Who We Are

Welcome to Drake Enterprises, Inc. the premier vineyard and avocado grove Management Company located in Temecula, California. Drake Enterprises, Inc. provides a full range of vineyard and avocado related activities to its clients. These include site selection, soils and water evaluation, variety, rootstock and scion selection, vineyard and avocado grove layout and development, vineyard and avocado grove management, harvest, consulting, avocado marketing strategy and grape brokerage. We follow the most modern techniques and are known throughout the industry. If you have a vineyard or avocado ranch in the Temecula area that requires management or if you are interested in acquiring or developing a vineyard or avocado ranch in the area do not hesitate to contact us. We can provide the professional quality service you require to assure success.

Ben Drake, President

Ben Drake, PresidentAs President of Drake Enterprises, Inc., a farm management company specializing in the development, maintenance and marketing of winegrapes and avocados in Southern Riverside and Northern San Diego counties, he is continuously taking on the challenges and issues that face our industry and community on a daily basis. Ben has taken on many active roles in preserving the future water supply of our communtiy, being a visionary on pest management/control practices, and a leader in sustainable winegrape and avocado growing practices and the participation and is a major part of numerous statewide organizations to secure the future of agriculture in our wonderful state.

Ben Drake has lived in the Temecula area for 40 years, planting much of the agricultural acreage for Kaiser Aetna in the 1970’s. He and his wife, Sharon, were married in 1975 at the Rancho Community Church and she taught 5th grade, at what is now Temecula Elementary School. Ben’s four children graduated from Temecula Valley and Great Oak High Schools. Ben graduated from California State University of Fresno and was a graduate of the California Agricultural Leadership Program in 1983.

Ben’s professional affiliates are:
President Rancho California Water District Board of Directors
Past Chairman California Association of Winegrape Growers & Board Member,
Past President Riverside County Farm Bureau & Board Member,
Past President Temecula Valley Winegrape Growers Association & Board Member,
UCR Chancellors Agricultural Advisory Council Member,
Past President California Winegrape Growers Foundation,
Board Member California Sustainable Winegrape Alliance,
Member Agricultural Leadership Association.  

Ben’s State Appointments are:
California State Board of Food and Agriculture,
Past Chairman of California Pierce’s Disease/Glassy-Winged Sharpshooter Board, and California Pierce’s Disease/Glassy-Winged Sharpshooter Task Force

2013 California Association of Wine Grape Grower Leader of the Year.
Robert M. Howie Award in 2010 for Outstanding Service to Riverside Agriculture.
2004 Valley Group Award for Excellence in Agriculture.
Award of Excellence from the USDA, as he was a large contributor to theCooperative Glassy-Winged Sharpshooter area wide management team that spearheaded the solution to the threat of Pierce’s Disease and the GlassyWinged Sharpshooter in June of 2003.

J.D. Harkey, Director of Operations

J.D. HARKEY, Director of OperationsBorn in Fallbrook, CA and has lived in Temecula since 1980, J.D. graduated from Temecula Valley High School in 1995 and was part of two CIF semifinal baseball teams. J.D. went on to Point Loma Nazarene University and graduated in 2000 with a degree in Business Administration while being named as a NAIA Baseball All American . With 10 years of experience in avocado and wine grape production, he is an integral part of our everyday operation.

J.D.’s professional affiliates are: 
Current Director for CAWG representing District 7 and was recently appointed as a Current Director to the California Wine Grape Grower Foundation Board, which is a Foundation that recognizes students with families in the Agriculture industry and rewards applicants with scholarships to colleges and universities.

Kathleen Hammond, Secretary

Kathleen Hammond, SecretaryKathleen is a graduate of Ben’s archenemy…USC. She was the first scholarshipped women’s basketball player at USC. After college, Kathleen played basketball over seas in Europe. Kathleen graduated USC with a degree in Physical Education and has worked for us for more than 20 years. She is the piston that drives the engine and we wouldn’t be able to do what we do without her. Kathleen is an extremely valuable part of our business to say the least.

Maximo Ugalde, Vineyard Foreman

MAXIMO UGALDE Vineyard ForemanMaximo has over 20 years of experience in growing avocados and wine grapes. His hands on ability and technical skill has proven to be a very valuable asset to our company. His current duties are as foreman on our vineyard side of the operation.

Cresencio Hernandez, Avocado Foreman

Kathleen Hammond, SecretaryCresencio, or “Cres” as many people know him as, is not only a great guy, but is highly qualified and extremely conscious about his craft. He is extremely hands on and performs his duties as if each plant were his own. Thought of by many as a perfectionist, we are lucky to have Cresencio on board.