Assistant Vineyard Manager
What’s your favorite quote?
“Work for what you’re worth.” – Unknown
What achievement do you consider your crowning glory?
Being able to come back home to Sonoma County and work in the place I love—both the area and these vineyards.
What’s your favorite color?
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a fireman.
If you were a superhero, what power(s) would you have?
I would be Dr. Strange and slow down time. That would be cool.
What are you doing to make the world a better place?
I am an agriculturalist, and I always bring a positive attitude.
Born and raised in Sonoma County, Riggs Lokka was raised in the wine industry—from going to work with his dad at Sonoma Cutrer to going with his mom to Glenn Ellen Winery. When Emeritus Vineyards was established, he was out planting vines with the crew and has been a piece of the puzzle ever since.
When the Lokkas moved to the ranch in 2004, Riggs enrolled at El Molino High School and began taking an agriculture class. This is where he found his love for animals and began sprouting the seed for teaching. He was an active member in 4H but flourished in FFA where he excelled in career development events. While in high school, Riggs competed in Livestock Judging and Grapevine Pruning. His skills and hard work paid off there, propelling him towards being a State Champion Livestock Judge in 2007 and three-time Sonoma County Pruning Champion.
After completing high school Riggs moved on to Santa Rosa Junior College, where he earned associate degrees in Animal Science and Vineyard Management, and then to Fresno State for a degree in Teaching as well. While at Fresno State he was the vegetable crop unit manager, sheep unit manager, and in his spare time was also a meat cutter in the 100% student-run Fresno State Meat Lab.
Riggs went into teaching in 2013 at Santa Rosa High School, instructing students in Animal Science and Viticulture. Three years passed, and, deciding to try something different, he moved south to Stockton and taught Agriculture Mechanics (welding and woodshop). Every summer, when not attending fairs and helping kids with projects, Riggs returned home to work alongside his father Kirk at Emeritus.
In July of 2020, Riggs decided that while teaching for seven years had been incredibly fulfilling, he was ready to transition to his final career. He moved back to Sonoma County and joined the Emeritus Vineyards crew full time, and these days can be found either out in the vineyards, popping into the tasting room to provide a laugh, or with his wife-to-be Emily, Mini Heeler dog Jade, and cat Ivy.
Riggs and Emily had their engagement photos taken at Emeritus Vineyards.