ABOUT US. OUR STORY. SO, WHO ARE...
The Minds Behind the Merchandise?
|CATHERINE C. ROBERTS
Co-Founder and CEO – The Celeste Alexandra Group, LLC
Catherine is the foremost strategist and creative mind within the company. She spearheaded efforts to found the company and design its products after an interesting career in the defense and government industry. When opportunity emerged, her enthusiasm and initiative lead to transition. She eagerly left behind the bureaucratic office environments to focus her efforts as an entrepreneur.
Her professional background consists of senior and executive level writing/editing, communications and outreach, strategic communications, public affairs, marketing/branding and leadership roles for various defense contracting companies as a contractor and independent consultant. She’s held top-secret cleared positions located at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the National Security Agency (NSA), the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Pentagon. Her earlier work experience includes serving in the U.S. Air Force signals intelligence field, marketing and promotional modeling. She is a graduate of American University in Washington D.C. with a BA in Journalism from their School of Communication.
With intense ambition, motivation, and creativity, Catherine is passionate about her journey in life. Visualizing and achieving goals comes naturally. Her philosophy is that life is an opportunity to reach one’s true potential and is best lived surrounded by positive family and friends in an abundance of love, laughter, health and prosperity.
Co-Founder and President – The Celeste Alexandra Group, LLC
Christopher is the predominant technical and operational mind within the company. His accomplished leadership background as a software engineer and eCommerce professional complements his co-founder’s strengths to form a dynamic business partnership.
His career began at the corporate headquarters of QVC, Inc., one of the largest multimedia retailers in the world. He thrived in various positions as a website developer, team leader and project manager for television and online eCommerce and multi-channel marketing integration projects. He collaborated with merchandise and marketing teams, designed high performance applications and executed highly technical projects before he advanced to other software and technology companies.
While his career is technical in nature, Christopher possesses sharp people skills. He’s mentored individuals, formed and managed successful team projects, and served as a liaison for business and technology departments. He received a BS in Computer Science from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA and holds a Master of Software Engineering degree from Penn State University.
Christopher is charismatic and driven. He seeks adventure and welcomes a challenge. His willingness to take risks while focusing on final outcomes fosters his role as an entrepreneur.
The Celeste Alexandra Group founders credit their first product, the Wine Wagon, as the catalyst for starting their business. The Wine Wagon is a patented, unique and novel product created by a family member, but developed and designed by the company. Vincent A. Risteter Jr., a prolific builder of countless homemade “inventions” constructed the “wine wagon” without any intentions. He handcrafted his seemingly modest design in one day. Upon introduction, the original prototype of the Wine Wagon immediately became Catherine’s inspiration.
What started as a spirited holiday party in Pennsylvania ended as a significant occasion. Vincent excitedly exclaimed to Catherine he had something for her to see. He then emerged from a dark room with a whimsical but impressive looking wooden wagon. After an amusing and impromptu presentation from Vincent, she immediately envisioned a unique and marketable product. She reacted at first glimpse with laughter, then inquisition. She realized the potential of the raw design. To her knowledge, the box wine industry lacked marketing campaigns, promotion of its benefits and unlike the bottle, also lacked accessories. What box wine didn’t lack, is the stigma associated with quality. No product like this existed. If it did, it would be her mission to find out. Within minutes, her wildly creative spirit turned the night into a brainstorming session.
Despite being a bottle of wine lover, Catherine became an instant fan of the rough prototype inspired by the stigma of drinking from a box. Vincent’s hilarious “hide your box of wine” design became a platform for future change. Why not market merchandise that promoted box wine with a trendy approach. She relentlessly pursued the idea to transform the Wine Wagon into an intriguing, stylish product with clever designs and “personalities”. Catherine’s perseverance and ambition ignited the entrepreneurial spirit that already existed within the siblings. She seized the opportunity and her brother Christopher’s time. She researched, strategized, motivated key players and fueled the fire that turned her vision into reality. Her initiatives to develop and manufacture the Wine Wagon line proved successful. Vincent unknowingly created the product that would launch a company. With Christopher as her savvy business partner, they founded The Celeste Alexandra Group, LLC in November 2011.
The journey has since lead to a patented product, a trademark pending logo and multiple other products in development. It also lead to a career change for Catherine sooner than anticipated. She focused on building the family owned business for the brother and sister team. Each sibling's unique and distinct expertise contributes to their energetic partnership. Their love of world traveling, adventure and wanting more to life than the status quo promotes their determination to grow their business. They strive to offer consumers an intriguing array of creative merchandise made and manufactured in the U.S.A.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering - Catherine and Christopher still love a good bottle of wine with family and friends, but have since embraced the benefits and taste of drinking a quality box wine. The Wine Wagon stole their hearts and changed their opinions. Drink more box wine! They hope you love their products as much as they do.