Peggy Furth has been named chief executive officer of Chalk Hill Estate Vineyards & Winery, the high-end Healdsburg winery founded by her husband, flamboyant class action attorney Fred Furth.

The Furths, who are in the middle of a divorce, jointly decided the time was right for Peggy to head the winery, said Kerry Manahan-Ehlow, vice president of sales and marketing.

"They both share the same passion for the company, and it's time for Peggy to lead us into the future," Manahan-Ehlow said.

Fred Furth founded Chalk Hill in 1980. Both he and Peggy Furth will retain the title of co-chairman of the winery.

Peggy Furth appointed Ken Born, previously the winery's chief financial officer, as president and chief operating officer, according to a release. The winery's tasting room hours will also be extended.

The winery, which is surrounded by about 320 acres of vineyards, makes about 60,000 cases of wine a year, most priced between $30 and $60.

Neither of the Furths could be reached for comment.

-- Kevin McCallum