Meet the Whalebird Team

Profile Picture - Mike Durighello


CEO/ Founder

Mike started brewing Kombucha in his garage back in 2012 because some hippy surfer in Santa Cruz told him it could make him shred harder. Surfing super powers aside, Mikes primary Kombucha interest became sourcing organic and sustainable ingredients to create Whalebird’s core flavor line up. After many late nights of brewing followed by climbing sessions at the local bouldering gym, Mike stumbled upon the bold yet balanced base Kombucha that Whalebird still uses today for all of its flavors. Out in the wild you can find Mike playing a game of “What Are The Odds“ with Max Shulman or crushing down some single track on his mountain bike. Literally no person on the face of the earth can beat him in a game of Worms 2.

Profile Picture - Jacob Pritzlaff


Numbers Guy

Jake joined what became Whalebird back in 2013 when Kombucha kegs were still being delivered on oversized commuter bikes and invoices were handwritten notes. The two loves of Jakes life are the History Channel and Microsoft Excel. Need to know who won the French Revolution of 1789 or the best way to build your financial forecast? Whatever the problem, if Jake can’t get you the answer you want, undoubtedly he’s sure to convince you of his. Outside of the brewery you can find Jake downtown swing dancing, spear fishing a secret spot, or playing along to some early 2000’s Eminem with his acoustic guitar. Literally no person on the face of the earth can beat him in a game of Worms 2.

Profile Picture - Lee Wilkerson


Builder Man

Lee joined Whalebird in 2015 as the teams Macgyver, and all around mad scientist engineer. He enabled the team to drastically improve production and ferment more with less by designing and building the systems in place today. Beyond his functional design, Lee possesses a skill set that many engineers lack and that is the ascetic eye, which is why the Whalebird brewery also doubles as a constant art installment. Although humble, Lee can shred just about any board sport with the best of them. Find him at the beach, in a drum circle, or in the water catching some waves on any of the amazing beaches here on the central coast.

Profile Picture - Dustin Oswald



With 10 years experience in craft beer, Dustin joined up with Whalebird in the fall of 2016 just as things were really starting to pick up speed. He brought with him a knowledge and foundation for scaling production and distribution that has proven to be invaluable. Not only can Dustin run a production team like no other, he has an uncontrollable vigor to plan years down the road in all aspects of business. This foresight has helped Whalebird identify and solve future problems and has made the team overly excited at the possibility of sharing more Kombucha with more people. The only time he doesn’t talk too much is when the waves are good and then it’ll take a force of nature to keep him out of the water. He’s also got the cutest puppy on team.

Orion Headshot 2022 (1)


Director of Operations

10. Carmela Rosas

Carmela Rosas

Sales Rep

Britta Higgins Headshot

Britta Higgins

Sales Rep

Dyno Logo Portrait

Dyno Creative Team

Daniel, Austin and Alec

The Dyno Team is a creative powerhouse led by their fearless leader Daniel Adoff and his awesome mustache. Together they have helped Whalebird rebrand, build a new website, launch new packaging, and design a whole host of marketing and sales materials. They are a quintessential part of the team and we don’t know what we’d do without them. Smooches.