Russian River Vineyards Consolidates Ownership

 Giovanni Balistreri (Gio), Russian River Vineyards Winemaker and General Manager, and a small team of financial backers have purchased Russian River Vineyards from the large partner group that has owned the business since 2008. Balistreri, an original RRV partner, has invigorated the business, built a strong operating team, and expanded sales and distribution since becoming General Manager in 2019.

In the fall of 2008, the historic estate was purchased by Giovanni Balistreri, famed Pinot Noir winemaker Anthony Austin, Chris O’Neill and over 40+ other investors and partners.

“Having just a handful of owners and a simpler management structure now makes it easier for me to focus on the wine and on growing the business,” says Gio.

RRV is in the heart of the Russian River Valley and has been renowned for making award-winning single vineyard artisanal Pinot Noirs, Chardonnays, and other classic varietals since its inception in 1963.

Most recently, Russian River Vineyards has won “Best Pinot Noir” in NorthBay Biz’s annual “Best Of the North Bay” readers’ poll for the second time and won Best Tasting Room and Best White Wine in the 2022 Press Democrat Reader’s Poll.

Anthony Austin, an original founder, and consulting winemaker will remain as an advisor to Balistreri and Russian River Vineyards.

Russian River Vineyards

Reed Shelly



Microsoft Word version of the press release


  • Food & Beverage
  • Hobbies & Craft
  • Lifestyle
  • Wine

Canada – Campbell River professional whale watching guide fined $10,000 under the Species At Risk Act for knowingly approaching Threatened killer whales

On September 13, 2021, in Campbell River Provincial Court, the Honourable Judge R. Lamperson found Nicklaus Templeman, the owner and operator of Campbell River Whale and Bear Excursions, guilty of violations under both the Species At Risk and Federal Fisheries Acts.

October 21, 2021

Campbell River, British Columbia – On September 13, 2021, in Campbell River Provincial Court, the Honourable Judge R. Lamperson found Nicklaus Templeman, the owner and operator of Campbell River Whale and Bear Excursions, guilty of violations under both the Species At Risk and Federal Fisheries Acts. Justice Lamperson ordered Mr. Templeman to pay a fine of $5,000 for each violation, for a total of $10,000. He also directed that these monies be used for the conservation and protection of marine mammals in the waters off British Columbia.

The sentence stems from a incident on May 27, 2019, when Mr. Templeman was observed by two other whale watching guides illegally approaching a killer whale within 35 metres near Willow Point. Mr. Templeman acknowledged over the VHF radio that he was aware of the presence of the whale pod. However, he continued to travel in their direction and positioned his vessel in a way to ensure that the whales would have to pass him in close proximity.

The Department has a mandate to protect and conserve marine resources and to prosecute offenders under the Fisheries and Species At Risk Acts. It ensures and promotes compliance with these Acts and other laws and regulations through a combination of land, air, and sea patrols, as well as education and awareness activities.

As part of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s work to end illegal activity, the Department asks the public for information on activities of this nature or any contravention of the Fisheries Act and regulations. Anyone with information can call the toll-free violation reporting line at 1-800-465-4336, or email the details to

Record, Reporting line by the other whale watching guides and a Conservation and Protection fishery officer from the Campbell River Detachment went to assess the situation.

There were six to seven commercial whale watching vessels in the area of the incident who subsequently provided witness statements, as did several of the tourists who were on board. These witnesses also provided significant amounts of photos and video statements.

It is mandatory to respect the approach distances and other protective measures in place for marine mammals.

Section 7(2) of the Marine Mammal Regulations states that: disturb includes to approach the marine mammal to, or to attempt to trap it or its group between a vessel and the shore or between a vessel and one or more other vessels. Mr. Templeman contravened this section of the Fisheries Act by approaching from behind within 35 m and encircling the whales, and positioning his vessel near the shoreline, resulting in the two groups of Orca transiting between his vessel and the other whale watching vessels that were offshore.

The Species at Risk Act (SARA) is part of the Government of Canada’s commitment to keep Canadian wildlife species from becoming extinct and secure the necessary actions for their recovery. It provides for the legal protection of wildlife species and the conservation and preservation of their biological diversity.

Bigg’s killer whales are long-lived upper trophic level predators that are considered to be at risk due to small population size, very low reproductive rate (one calf approximately every five years), and high levels of chemical contaminants that are persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic. Because they rely on stealth and passive listening to detect prey, Bigg’s killer whales are at risk of habitat degradation through acoustic disturbance from underwater noise.

Leri Davies, Strategic Media Relations Advisor

Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region

Tel: (604) 666-8675

Cell: (604) 612-6837

Platte River Equity Announces the Acquisition of Municipal Emergency Services, Inc.

 Platte River Equity (“Platte River”) announced today that it has acquired Municipal Emergency Services, Inc. (“MES” or the “Company”) from HB Equity Partners. Headquartered in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, MES is a leading equipment supplier and service provider to first responders throughout the United States.

“We are looking forward to our new partnership with Platte River,” said Tom Hubregsen, CEO of MES. “Over the last 15 years, our team has helped make MES the top choice for first responders to meet their equipment and service needs. The team at Platte River will provide a unique perspective and insight to help us continue our expansion of product and service offerings and geographic reach.”

“We are excited about the opportunity to work with Tom and his team,” said Eric Crawford, Principal of Platte River. “MES represents the leading brands in the industry and has built a strong organization and stellar reputation for customer service. We look forward to building upon these successes.”

Michael Bonnet of HB Equity Partners said, “We are proud of what Tom and the team at MES have accomplished over the last 15 years and are looking forward to the opportunity to participate alongside Platte River in the next phase of the Company’s growth.”

Nelson Mullins served as legal counsel and Jefferies served as financial advisor to MES. Bartlit Beck LLP served as legal counsel and Houlihan Lokey served as financial advisor to Platte River. Varagon Capital Partners, L.P. served as Administrative Agent and Joint Lead Arranger for the financing; Crescent Direct Lending served as Joint Lead Arranger and PennantPark Investment Advisers and Siemens Financial Services, Inc. served as co-lenders.

About Platte River Equity

Founded in 2006 and based in Denver, CO, Platte River Equity is a private equity firm focused on investments in established lower middle market operating companies within targeted industrial sectors where it has substantial operating and investing experience. Platte River utilizes conservative capital structures in order to invest in future growth opportunities and withstand changing economic environments. The firm also provides significant ongoing support to its portfolio companies through dedicated resources across functional areas.

The firm has raised funds with committed capital in excess of $1.3 billion and is currently investing out of its $625 million fourth fund. Platte River’s employees are the largest collective investor across its funds, deeply aligning the firm with its investors and portfolio company management teams.

About Municipal Emergency Services, Inc.

Established in 2001, Municipal Emergency Services, Inc. has quickly grown to be a leading supplier for first responders. MES represents the industry’s best brands, including 3M Scott, Point Blank, Honeywell, FireDex, RevolveAir Systems, Seek Thermal, Hurst Jaws of Life, Matex Hose, Elbeco, 5.11 Tactical and many more. MES has a national network of sales representatives, mobile service technicians and in-house service centers strategically located around the United States.

Municipal Emergency Services, Inc.

Shridhar Shah


America’s largest supplier of firefighting equipment and PPE to first responders.



  • Business
  • Mergers & Acquisitions

“Leadership In The River” is Free on Amazon for One More Day (Until 08/27/2021)

Best Seller Publishing announces the release of Chris Walsh’s new #1 best-selling book, “Leadership In The River: Obeying God In Our Leadership.” It will be available for free download in the Amazon Kindle Store for one more day, August 27th.

In God we trust? It is a pertinent question answered by this book, for trust comes from believing something, and belief is another word for faith. The Bible says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God, so the purpose of this book is twofold:

  1. To equip ministers to better understand the often brutal law of the jungle that the business world has become and to see Jesus as King of the Jungle, a mighty warrior who fights for our families, our businesses, and our churches.
  2. To further equip successful business owners in their growth in mature Christian leadership.

If you are a Christian leader in either ministry or business- the eternal revolutionary truths revealed in this book make it a manual for success you cannot afford to pass by.

“Leadership In The River” by Chris Walsh is free and available for download on Amazon for one more day (08/27/2021) at:

For More Information:

For questions or to schedule an interview about this press release please contact us at (626) 765-9750 or email

Best Seller Publishing is a Los Angeles Publishing Company dedicated to helping business owners and entrepreneurs become “the hunted” with their best-selling books.

About The Author

Chris Walsh is a Christian Missionary who recognizes the fact that history rises and falls on the shoulders of great leaders. So, he began to study and implement Biblical leadership principals into his life, business, and ministry; and has discovered (after reading over 100 books on Christian Leadership) that the Bible itself has the answers to life’s challenges that we all need. So he wrote one of the absolute best books on Christian Leadership ever written, to help leaders lead like Jesus, in the complexity of our human experience.

Focus of River Conservation

There are two types of rivers in the country viz: perennial and non-perennial rivers. Perennial are those rivers in which water remains available throughout the year and non-perennial are rain-fed rivers, in which water flows only during the monsoon. Rivers in the country are polluted mainly due to discharge of untreated and partially treated sewage from cities/towns and industrial effluents in their respective catchments, problems in operation and maintenance of sewage/effluent treatment plants, lack of dilution and other non point sources of pollution. Rapid urbanization and industrialization have compounded the problem.

Cleaning/rejuvenation of rivers is an ongoing activity. It is the responsibility of the States/UTs and local bodies to ensure required treatment of sewage and industrial effluents to the prescribed norms before discharging into river and other water bodies, coastal waters or land to prevent and control of pollution therein. For conservation of rivers, this Ministry has been supplementing efforts of the States/UTs by providing financial and technical assistance for abatement of pollution in identified stretches of rivers in the country through the Central Sector Scheme of Namami Gange for rivers in Ganga basin, and Centrally Sponsored Scheme of National River Conservation Plan (NRCP) for other rivers. Further, priority for effective rejuvenation of small rivers has been accorded under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).

Proposals for pollution abatement works in the towns along polluted river stretches are received from the States/UTs from time to time for consideration under NRCP and sanctioned based on their prioritization, conformity with NRCP guidelines, availability of plan funds, etc.

NRCP has so far covered polluted stretches on 34 rivers in 77 towns spread over 16 States in the country with the project sanctioned cost of Rs.5965.90 crore, and inter-alia, a sewage treatment capacity of 2522.03 MLD has been created. Under Namami Gange programme, a total of 346 projects including 158 projects for sewage treatment of 4948 MLD and sewer network of 5213 km, have been sanctioned at a cost of Rs.30235 crore.

In addition, sewerage infrastructure is created under programs like Atal Mission for Rejuvenation & Urban Transformation (AMRUT) and Smart Cities Mission of Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs.

As per the Provisions of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution), Act 1974, industrial units are required to install effluent treatment plants (ETPs) and treat their effluents to comply with stipulated environmental standards before discharging into river and water bodies. Accordingly, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) and Pollution Control Committees (PCCs) monitor industries with respect to effluent discharge standards and take action for non-compliance under provisions of these Acts.

Besides, in compliance of the orders of National Green Tribunal (NGT) in Original Application No.673/2018 regarding rejuvenation of polluted river stretches in the country, States/UTs are required to implement approved action plans for restoration of the polluted stretches in their jurisdiction as identified by CPCB and published in their report of 2018, within the stipulated timelines. As per the orders of NGT, regular review on implementation of action plans is undertaken in the States/UTs and also at Central level.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Jal Shakti & Food Processing Industries, Shri Prahlad Singh Patel in a written reply in the Lok  Sabha today.



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