Jim Kelley is the co-owner and the winemaker at Batton Hollow Winery in Lost Creek, West Virginia. Jim has been making wine as a home winemaker for nearly 40 years and the winery is the realization of a lifelong dream. Batton Hollow Winery proudly opened its doors on June 1, 2014 and currently offers seven varieties of fine wine.
Jim is a West Virginia native, born in Parsons, West Virginia. He spent his childhood in the Cumberland, Maryland area with frequent weekend trips back to Parsons to visit grandparents and other family. He attended West Virginia University and received his undergraduate degree in chemistry in 1974. While there he met Toni, the love of his life, and they recently celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary. He also received his commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at WVU, and entered active duty in the Air Force in 1976 with an assignment to the Communications Officer Basic Course at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss. During his 25 year Air Force career, he commanded two communications squadrons, and served as the communications director for the NATO Combined Air Operations Center, Vicenza, Italy. There, Colonel Kelley provided the communications systems and infrastructure for Air Component efforts in Bosnia. He held a variety of additional assignments including joint duty with the Defense Information Systems Agency and three headquarters staff assignments.
After his Air Force career, Jim worked in the telecommunications industry in the D.C. area in various sales positions. He worked for an AT&T spinoff called Avaya, and with a leading videoconferencing company called Tandberg. In 2010, Jim and Toni made the break from the D.C. area and returned to Parsons where they lived until 2012 when their current home in Lost Creek was finished. In early 2013, they decided it was time to start working on the winery, so here they are.
Jim and Toni have three children, Tim, Beth and Katie and six grandchildren (so far).