What Goes On at Brewbound Session?
The Pulse of the Beer Business, Presented by Industry Innovators
- See the big picture. Understand growth opportunities for both the industry and your business. Drive the beer business forward together through new insight and perspectives.
- Our speakers are leaders of both established and emerging breweries and interesting people from all three tiers of the beer industry.
- Speakers deliver talks on the state of the industry, growth strategies, best practices, market research, and cases that focus on growing your brewery and the lessons learned along the way
Time to Discover Your Next Partner and Share Stories with Your Peers
- The beer industry is competitive, but it’s also convivial. Rub elbows with beer’s best and brightest. Collaborate with brewery leaders and the ecosystem of supporting businesses: distributors, investors, lawyers, consultants, retailers and suppliers.
- We paced the program to allow for fruitful off-stage conversations during breaks. We also make sure there is plenty of time to share battle stories over a couple beers before and after the event.
Your Brewery Showcased on Stage
- The Startup Brewery Challenge is a showcase for new brewers. This is your opportunity to pitch against the best of the best, get instant feedback from a group of industry expert judges and compete for a cash prize and a trip to Portland, OR.
- Each brewery acts as a case study and a spark for discussion. Benefit from both the instant feedback on-stage and your brewery being a point of conversation among the audience.
- Past champions: Border X Brewing, Hopewell Brewing, Appalachian Mountain Brewery, Wynwood Brewing, and Braxton Brewing.
Connect your Products and Services to the Community
- Brewbound Session is an intimate conference for a select number of beer-specific industry supplier and service companies. It delivers more personalized participation than mega trade shows in an environment fit for in-depth conversations.
- The Sample Bars are a chance to get your beer in front of other brewers and the people who know your daily challenges. Bond over shared experiences and receive valuable feedback.
Past Brewbound Session Speakers
CEO, Craft Brew Alliance
Andy Thomas took the helm as Chief Executive Officer of Craft Brew Alliance (CBA) in January, 2014, after serving as President of Commercial Operations for the craft brewing company since 2011. Andy brings more than two decades of leadership experience in consumer packaged goods and the beer and beverage industries to his role as CEO for CBA. He spent 12 years, from 1995 to 2007, at Heineken, working with brewers and beers in more than 55 countries across four continents, including serving as president & CEO of Heineken USA from 2005-2007. Following that, he served as an independent consultant and senior advisor to The Monitor Group, a global management consulting firm. Andy holds an MBA from the Simon Graduate School of Business, University of Rochester, and a Bachelor of Science, with a concentration in Marketing, from Bryant University.
Co-Founder, Executive Chair, New Belgium Brewing
Kim Jordan, co-founder and ex-CEO of New Belgium Brewing, has developed expertise at the intersection of business, the environment and community building to create one of the most respected craft breweries and innovative businesses in America. Employing humanistic philosophy that is integrated with a systems perspective, tenants of her training in Social Work, Kim has guided and influenced New Belgium’s culture with progressive policies like employee-ownership, open book management, environmental stewardship and philanthropic giving. In her twenty-plus years as an entrepreneur, Kim has had the opportunity to speak in front of thousands of people in the business, nonprofit and academic worlds about how to create a vibrant and rewarding work culture that enhances the company’s bottom line as well as her coworker’s and customer’s lives. After 25 years of growing and leading New Belgium, 15 as the company’s CEO, Kim is now in the role of Executive Chair of the New Belgium Board of Directors. She’s looking forward to watching her management peers and coworkers take New Belgium into new and exciting territory. Kim continues to be involved in New Belgium at the strategic level and to advocate for progressive business practices while she works with her family at the New Belgium Family Foundation, and relearns how to live at a more relaxed pace.
Founder, Oskar Blues Brewery
Dale Katechis -- a passionate and engaging person who is fueled by doing things differently -- founded Oskar Blues Brewery in 1997. Since, Oskar Blues has spawned a number of diverse enterprises, including multiple brewpubs, a farm, a non-profit organization, a food truck and even a bicycle company. In 2012, Oskar Blues became the first Colorado brewery to open an expansion brewery in the East. In 2014, the Colorado and North Carolina breweries together produced 119,000 barrels, and the brewery was listed as the 24th largest craft brewery in the U.S. When he's not working, Dale spends time with wife and four children. He is an avid mountain biker, and served as president of the Lyons Chamber of Commerce from 1999-2006.
Co-Founder & CEO, Founders Brewing Company
Mike Stevens is a co-founder of Founders Brewing Company and serves as the company’s CEO. Founders is one of the fastest-growing craft breweries in the nation, currently ranking among the top 20 largest craft breweries in the United States as of 2016. The brewery has received numerous awards from the World Beer Cup and the Great American Beer Festival, and its beers are often rated among the best in the world by RateBeer and BeerAdvocate users. The company has seen its annual barrel output nearly double each of the last seven years while distribution has expanded from seven states to 46. Founders finished 2016 with a total of 347,780 barrels shipped.
Category Manager – Beer, BevMo!
Amy Gutierrez, a native Northern Californian, started her beverage career, with Southern Wine & Spirits. The last two years there, she was the BevMo! Category Captain, where she helped open 19 stores. She joined BevMo! in 1997, in the same roll and then transitioned to Assistant Buyer for Food and Hardlines. Amy has always had a passion for beer, and in 2003 was promoted to the Assistant Buyer for beer. Then four years later, was promoted to her current position as Category Manager for Beer. She is responsible for all beer buying in 163 stores, in three states.
Founder, Heavy Seas Beer
A sixth generation Baltimorean, Hugh J. Sisson has been involved in all aspects of craft brewing. The Founder and Managing Partner of Heavy Seas Beer, Sisson is among Baltimore's premier authorities on craft brewing and a former manager of the state's first pub brewery, Sisson’s, located in Federal Hill. In the mid-eighties, Sisson, along with the help of Senator George W. Della, Jr., successfully lobbied the Maryland General Assembly to pass legislation required to open a brew pub in Maryland. With the initiation of pub brewing in Baltimore in 1989, Sisson immersed himself in the development and market recognition of both Sisson's and its beers. In 1994, he left Sisson’s to begin a new venture, Clipper City Brewing Company. Clipper City has been in operation for more than 21 years and markets fine beers – under the brand name of Heavy Seas -- in 18 states, as well as Washington, DC. Sisson is a member of the Brewers Association, is past president for the Brewers Association of Maryland, and a former member of the Master Brewers Association of America. He was founder of the Cross Street Irregulars Home Brew Club, Maryland’s oldest such club, and co-hosts a weekly program on WYPR Radio, Baltimore, entitled Cellar Notes that critiques fine wine and beer.
Former CEO, New Belgium Brewing
Christine Perich serves as the CEO of New Belgium Brewing and is a member of the company’s Board of Directors. At the end of 2012, she guided the company through a 2nd Stage ESOP transaction, which resulted in New Belgium becoming a 100% employee-owned company BCORP. Perich now has oversight of all day to day operations and the construction and integration of the company’s second production facility in Asheville, North Carolina, which is slated for completion in late 2015. Christine has been an integral part of New Belgium’s growth and success. When she started at New Belgium in 2000, the company operated a 165,000 barrelage production facility and distributed its products in 7 states. In 2014, New Belgium will produce more than 970,000 barrels and distribute its products in 37 states and throughout Canada and Sweden.
Co-Founder & CEO, Harpoon Brewery
Dan Kenary serves as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Mass. Bay Brewing Company, aka, the Harpoon Brewery. Dan graduated from Harvard College in 1982 with a degree in American History then earned an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business in 1985 while working at the First National Bank of Chicago. Frustrated with the lack of beer options, Dan left the bank in 1986 to co-found Harpoon. Dan has served on the Institute of Brewing Studies Board of Advisors, as director and treasurer of Save the Harbor/Save the Bay, a local environmental advocacy organization, president of the Boston Marine Park Business Association, and founding president of the Massachusetts Brewer’s Guild. He currently serves as Chairman of the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the Commonwealth’s largest employer association. In 2014 Dan led Harpoon through its transition to employee ownership through the creation of the Harpoon Employee Stock Ownership Plan (“ESOP”). Originally from Worcester, Dan lives in Wellesley with his wife, Julie, and has four children.
Director of Beverage Strategy, Yard House Restaurants
Greg began his restaurant career over two decades ago in service and continued into management through multiple concepts eventually landing at Yard House in November of 2005 opening the 13th location. After spending two years in management serving several locations in Southern California he moved into a beverage support role at the home office in 2007 officially taking over the beverage program as Director in September of 2014. Greg and his team currently manage beer, wine, cocktail, sprits and non-alcoholic beverage programing for the 69 Yard House locations in 24 states supporting over 9,100 tap handles nationwide and $36 million dollars in beverage purchasing.
Founder, The Beer Connect
Chris is the Chief Beer Drinker at The Beer Connect, focusing his award winning strategies and leadership in assisting the craft beer segment exercise their self-distribution rights while utilizing The Beer Connect's self-distribution and marketing technology. Since The Beer Connect's inception in December of 2015, Chris and his team have been able to help over 90 breweries grow their brands and gain exposure to millions of craft beer consumers and beverage managers across the US and world. Prior to diving into the intersection of craft beer and technology, Chris was a service member of the United States Coast Guard, managing pharmaceutical operations and supply chain, as well as serving as an EMT. After exiting the Coast Guard, he pursued a career in digital marketing and won multiple awards in direct correlation to his leadership and success of his teams. He has assisted fortune 500's to small privately held companies become more successful with their digital marketing strategies.
Chairman, Pabst Brewing Co.
Eugene Kashper is an American beer entrepreneur who acquired a controlling interest in Pabst Brewing Company in 2014. Mr. Kashper lives in Los Angeles where the company is headquartered, and currently serves as Chairman and CEO of PBC. Upon graduating from Columbia University, Kashper joined Ernst & Young as a consultant in International Business Services. In 1994, he left Ernst & Young to become the Stroh Brewery Company’s first and sole representative in the former Soviet Union. From 1995 to 1998, Kashper co-founded and served as CEO of North Winds Brewing, a beer and beverage import and distribution company based in Moscow, Russia. North Winds exclusively represented some of the brands Pabst owns today such as Strohs, Colt 45, Old Milwaukee, and Schaefer, as well as handling the marketing and distribution of Corona, Perrier, Heineken, Red Bull energy and other beer and beverage brands. In 1998, Kashper co-founded Ivan Taranov Breweries (ITB) and served as CEO until 2001. ITB grew to include 3 breweries and 23 wholly owned distribution operations in Russia. Kashper also co-founded the Syabr Brewing Company in Belarus and Vlad Pivo, a brewery in the Russian Far East. In 2008, Kashper co-founded Oasis Beverages, which currently has brewing and beverage operations in Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia. As CEO of Pabst, Kashper has worked to strengthen the company’s sales and distribution and supply chain capabilities, forge new partnerships with high-end brand owners, and take full advantage of the company’s unique portfolio of heritage brands which include such iconic brands as Pabst Blue Ribbon, Lone Star, Old Style, Stroh’s, Rainier, Colt 45 and others. Over the past 24 months Pabst has added 150 employees mainly in the sales and marketing functions, partnered with Small Town Brewery to launch Not Your Father’s Root Beer, become the exclusive importer for Tsingtao, and entered a partnership with Vermont Hard Cider Co., the maker of Woodchuck and other cider brands. Most recently, Pabst collaborated with Dog Tag Brewing Company founder Seth Jordan to launch Legacy Lager. Dog Tag donates 100% of its profits to benefit charities created or selected by Gold Star Families. Recent heritage brand innovations launched by Pabst include Stroh’s Bohemian Pilsner, Rainier Pale Mountain Ale, Ballantine Burton Ale and Old Style Oktoberfest. Mr. Kashper attended The Lawrenceville School in New Jersey and graduated from Columbia University in 1992 with a major in East Asian Languages and Cultures. He is married and has two children.
President, Alchemy & Science
A serial entrepreneur, Alan Newman's craft beer roots date back to 1993 with the launch of Magic Hat Brewing Company. Newman spent over 17 years at the helm of Magic Hat before turning to new opportunities in the industry. Newman brings his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for craft beer to his latest project, Alchemy & Science (A&S). The company is home to four brewery projects, including Traveler Beer Company, Angel City Brewery, Coney Island Brewing and Concrete Beach Brewery, all with a mission to expand the share of the craft beer nationally.
Owner, Atwater Brewery
Mark Rieth was born and raised in the metro Detroit area of Michigan. He is a proud alumni of Michigan State University, graduating with a Bachelor’s of Business in 1989. The automotive industry is where Mark got his start after college, working for Toyota Motor Corporation in Torrance, CA, followed by a transfer to the Regional Office of Sales and Marketing in Boston, MA. Mitsubishi Motor sales eventually recruited Mark, transferring him down to Phoenix, AZ as Director of Sales and Marketing. Mark was then transferred back to his home state of Michigan in 1997, the same year Atwater was founded. Mark got into the beer business by investing in Atwater Brewery in 2002 and took over the brewery outright in 2005 where it was producing around 250 barrels annually. Atwater Brewery produced approximately 45,000 barrels in 2015, making it the 3rd largest producer in the state of Michigan. Mark also resides in the Park with his wife, Sheri and their three kids, Parker, Emmie, and Lexi.
CEO, Bell's Brewery
Laura Bell is CEO of Bell’s Brewery, Inc., the seventh largest craft brewery in the United States. A second generation co-owner (Laura was just 2 months old when Larry Bell founded the brewery), she has spent time working various odd jobs when she was younger like gluing labels to bottles and in the Eccentric Café’s kitchen while in high school. Laura officially started working at the brewery full-time in 2007 after graduating from Michigan State University. Since then, she has spent time in sales, all areas of beer production and built the marketing department from the ground up. She now oversees all brewery operations and planning for Bell’s and its sister brewery in Escanaba, Upper Hand Brewery.
Director of Brewery & Distributor Relations, World of Beer
Since opening and managing the beer program for World of Beer’s 11th tavern, Marc has spent the last 6 years leading the beverage program for World of Beer, a market leader in the craft beer bar and restaurant space with over 70 locations in the United States and China. He developed World of Beer’s category management strategy and works with managers across the country to implement and customize beer offerings relative to local market and consumer trends. Partnering with local, national and global breweries, he works to ensure priority of new and rare products for his taverns to use in the creation of traffic driving programs and events.
Co-Founder, Bronx Brewery
Chris is the General Manager and Co-Founder of The Bronx Brewery, a craft brewery that creates exceptional pale ales. His journey in the food and beverage industry has taken him throughout the world, from Boston, MA to Sao Paulo, Brazil, before settling in the South Bronx. As General Manager, Chris focuses on the business-related aspects of The Bronx Brewery. As with all startups, he wears a number of hats, but is generally tasked with setting the overall strategy for the company and on a daily basis oversees Sales, Marketing, Finance, and Investor Relations. Before starting The Bronx Brewery, he worked as an independent marketing, sales, and business development consultant to Heineken International, focusing on small or turnaround operating companies. Prior to his work with Heineken, Chris oversaw a number of engagements with Bain & Company, a management consultancy, helping food and beverage companies tackle a wide range of issues from sales strategy to organizational restructuring to acquisition diligence. Chris holds an MBA from the Sloan School of Management at MIT and a BS from Bentley University.
The High End President, Anheuser-Busch InBev
Felipe Szpigel is president of The High End, with responsibility for the development of the company’s craft and import beer brands in the U.S. market. His portfolio includes Stella Artois, Shock Top and the company’s craft businesses: Goose Island in Chicago; Blue Point in Patchogue, N.Y.; 10 Barrel in Bend, Ore.; Elysian in Seattle; Virtue Cider in Fennville, MI; and Golden Road in Los Angeles. Szpigel is also a member of the company’s North American management committee, who oversee all aspects of the business in the United States and Canada. Before his current position in the U.S. market, Szpigel was vice president of trade marketing for the global parent company, Anheuser-Busch InBev, in New York. There he led a series of key projects around the world such as the company’s renewed on-premise focus.
Chief Economist, Brewers Association
Founder, Two Beers Brewing & Seattle Cider
Nearly one decade ago, Joel VandenBrink started brewing beer in the basement of his Seattle home. Today, he is founder and CEO of Two Beers Brewing and Seattle Cider Company, one of the country’s fastest growing craft cider brands. Responsible for the management and operations of the two Seattle-based companies, Joel has used his background as manufacturing engineer to craft his dream, taking it from an 170-square-foot ActiveSpace to a more than 29,000 square foot production facility and tasting room, distributing to 12 states and four countries. Most recently, VandenBrink led the companies through a merger with Agrial, France’s largest cider producer, expanding the brewery and cidery’s capital investments and international distribution.
President, Rogue Ales & Spirits
Brett Joyce began his career at Rogue Ales & Spirits in 1989. At age 16 he worked as a keg washer and truck driver. Brett graduated from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon in 1995 with a double major in History and Economics. He worked at Adidas for 10 years, principally in product marketing, and worked at Adidas-Taylor Made Golf in Carlsbad, California where he was Director of Global Golf Footwear. He spent two years at Fila North America, outside of Baltimore, Maryland, where he was General Manager. He eventually “returned” to Rogue in 2006, where he learned the business working along side of his father (Founder & Chief Wisdom Officer, Jack Joyce). Brett was named President in 2007. He is married 16 years to Rhonda, has two daughters -- Lauren (14) and Emily (13) -- and a dog named Rascal.
Managing Partner, First Beverage Group
Townsend developed his love of beverages while at graduate school in Northern California, where he found an appreciation for wine that evolved into a 25-year collector’s history. Prior to joining First Beverage, Townsend spent over 25 years in investment banking and private equity at The First Boston Corporation, Wasserstein Perella & Co., and Wasserstein & Co. He has completed over $40 billion in mergers and acquisitions advisory assignments, and as a principal investor over 30 private equity investments ranging from leveraged buyouts and growth equity to venture capital. In this capacity, he served on numerous private and public company boards of directors. He is a former Director and Non-Executive Chairman of Imax Corporation, a leading large-screen film projection company, and a former Director of two other public companies: Collins & Aikman Corporation, a $2 billion automotive components company, and Maybelline, Inc., a leading mass market cosmetics manufacturer. While at First Beverage, Townsend has advised Firestone Walker in its partnership with Duvel Moortgat, Brooklyn Brewery in its investment from Kirin, Southern Tier in its investment from Ulysses, Boulevard in its sale to Duvel Moortgat, Hop Valley Brewing and Terrapin Beer in their sales to MillerCoors, 10 Barrel Brewing, Breckenridge Brewery, Devils Backbone Brewery and Spiked Seltzer in their sales to ABInBev.
President, Brooklyn Brewery
Robin Ottaway is co-owner and President of the Brooklyn Brewery. His relationship to the company began when he first met founder Steve Hindy while living in Egypt, where his father David Ottaway worked alongside Steve as a war correspondent in the Middle East. Robin attended Colby College in Maine before moving to Boston to run the distribution arm of Brooklyn Brewery with his brother, Eric. He later moved to Brooklyn and took over management of the sales team, where his booming laugh and expansive knowledge of the beer industry proved indispensable. In his time managing sales and as President, Robin has overseen the Brooklyn Brewery expand into more than ten new states and over a dozen new countries. He and his family are Brooklyn fixtures; Robin sits on the executive board of the Brooklyn Historical Society, and he and his family are deeply involved in many community events.
SVP, Beverage Alcohol Practice, Nielsen
Danny Brager is the Senior Vice President of Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Practice Area in the United States, supporting relationships with Nielsen’s many Beer, Wine, and Spirits clients, as well as with key industry groups and the media. In this role, Danny and his team provides business information, analysis and insights, focusing on the U.S. retail environment and consumer – who they are, what they buy, and why. Danny has fifteen years of experience specific to the Beverage Alcohol industry, and for the past 30 plus years has held a variety of marketing and sales positions with Nielsen in both Canada and the United States. Danny is a frequent speaker at many client and industry events on the subject of Beverage Alcohol retail and consumer trends. Danny holds an Honors Bachelor of Business Administration from York University in Toronto, Canada. After residing and working in Canada for many years, he now lives in Southern California. And as a Canadian, he's a passionate hockey fan!
Founder & CEO, Liberation Distribution, Inc.
Cheryl Murphy Durzy has been managing wholesale sales for her family’s 80,000 case winery, Clos LaChance, for over 17 years. She has a full understanding of the industry and issues regarding alcohol distribution in the United States. She is passionate about LibDib and hopes to disrupt the current system by offering all small, family-owned wineries and businesses an opportunity to sell their products to other businesses that want them. Cheryl is truly entrenched in the industry, sitting on several Boards, including the California Sustainable Wine Association and Free the Grapes.
Owner, Shmaltz Brewing
Jeremy Cowan is the founder and proprietor of Shmaltz Brewing Company – the world’s smallest, largest, and most award-winning Jewish Celebration and Sideshow Freak beer company. Recently named “Best American Craft Brewer” for 2010 by Beverage World Magazine and ranked by consumer website RateBeer.com as one of 2013’s “Top 100 Brewers in the World,” Shmaltz has made quality, community, and shtick the defining pillars of its business over the past seventeen years. Over the course of 2011 and 2012, Shmaltz Brewing won 14 Gold and Silver Medals with the World Beer Championships. Over the past 18 years, Shmaltz has grown into a 200,000 case per year operation (over 12,000 barrels), grossing $3.9 million in sales in 2012, a 42% increase over 2011. In May 2013, Shmaltz opened its own New York State production brewery. Located in Clifton Park, NY, 10 minutes north of Albany's capital district, Shmaltz's new home boasts a 50-barrel brewhouse with 20,000 barrels of annual capacity.
Co-Founder, Pints LLC
Daniel Lust, the former Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Golden Eagle Distributors, Inc., a family-owned beverage wholesaler based in Tucson, AZ, is an independent consultant with PINTS LLC supporting the beverage industry in strategic planning, data analysis, marketing and branding, territory expansion, and wholesaler management. During his tenure at GED he was focused on developing internal process improvements, profitable pricing initiatives, business intelligence tools and portfolio development. His sales leadership was recognized by supplier partners, including national recognition by Anheuser-Busch for developing innovative solutions to measure sales performance and execution. He is also an avid mountain biker, road cyclist, golf nut, home brewer and active member of various charitable organizations in the local community.
Co-Founder, Night Shift Brewing
Rob is part of a trio of friends who left their day jobs to follow their passion for brewing. Rob graduated from college with a strong love for craft beer. Post-college Rob worked for 6 plus years in the technology industry in Boston. In early 2012 Rob and his two other Co-Founders launched Night Shift Brewing in Everett, MA. For the past 5+ years Rob has lead the brewing team at Night Shift pushing for innovation and the creation of unique world class beers. In the fall of 2016 Rob and his Co-Founders launched a second business venture, Night Shift Distributing. Rob now leads this disruptive beer wholesale operation. Rob also serves as a the President of the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Brewers Guild where he works to protect and promote the state's brewing industry.
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