TINGUISHED PROFESSIONALS SPEAK ON THE EVOLVING INDUSTRYWe are honored to have trailblazers, trendsetters and rising stars join us on stage. They speak at Brewbound Live because they’re focused on the future of the beer industry. Expect a first-rate speaker roster delivering the highest quality business discussions. Our on-stage content is specifically designed with founders, C-level executives, and decision-makers in mind.
PAST BREWBOUND LIVE SPEAKERS
Speakers will be announced closer to the event. Please check back for updates.
Co-Founder, Firestone Walker
Firestone Walker co-founder David Walker is originally from Devon, a county in southwest England. He relocated to the West Coast in 1991, and established the brewery in Los Olivos, California with his brother-in-law Adam Firestone a few years after that. The company relocated Paso Robles in 2001. Walker makes regular trips home to see his family and check on his beer, which, along with 20 U.S. states, is distributed in the UK.
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.
Co-Founder / Field Hoperative, Melvin Brewing
Jeremy Tofte is co-founder of Melvin Brewing Company. Like all good modern day drinkers, Jeremy is all heart ?and? soul when it comes to craft beer. He founded Thai Me Up restaurant in Jackson Hole, Wyoming in 2000. He was working as a waiter in the current Thai Me Up space and, just like most restaurants in the most expensive town in America, it went under. Being the hustler that he is, he talked the landlord into giving him the keys to the space. After painting the walls and learning Thai food, he opened and immediately started ruining people’s vacations by playing loud hip-hop and Kung Fu while having fun at work. He started brewing legally at Thai Me Up in 2010 on a 20-gallon system. Jeremy was born in Montana and grew up in the beer business in both Oregon and Northwest, Washington where he began working at a beer distributorship in High School. His grandpa worked for Al Capone in Minot, Minnesota, and his father worked for Hamm’s -- and then Miller Brewing -- from age 24 until his retirement. After graduating from Portland State, and snowboarding all over the Western U.S., Jeremy moved to Jackson Hole in 1995. He is entirely committed to having the most fun, brewing the best beer, and making the most people laugh on any given day.
Founder, The Lost Abbey
Chief Economist, NBWA
Lester Jones tracks the economic factors that impact the beer distribution industry and alcohol policy decisions at the federal, state and local levels. He evaluates and develops primary industry data, including economic impact, tax impacts, sales and volume data. Jones has more than 20 years of experience in research, survey methodology and applied economics. He previously served as chief economist at the Beer Institute, where he developed and executed significant research initiatives that helped shape America’s beer industry. Jones also has become a respected public speaker, offering in-depth technical, analytical and quantitative expertise. In addition to his decade of work at the Beer Institute, Jones previously worked for Arbitron Company (Nielsen) in Columbia, Maryland, and the Regional Economic Studies Institute in Towson, Maryland. Jones holds a Master of Science in Economics from the University of Delaware as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.
Manager, Beverage Alcohol Practice, Nielsen
Caitlyn Battaglia is a Manager within Nielsen's Beverage Alcohol Practice Area, where she supports Nielsen's initiatives and thought leadership across beer, wine, and spirits clients. She has been with the Practice Area for more than two years. Prior to joining the Beverage Alcohol Practice Area, Battaglia worked in advanced analytics focusing on pricing and promotion as well as sales and marketing effectiveness. A current Roanoke resident, she holds a B.A. from Denison University and has been with Nielsen for over five years.
Co-Founder, Ninkasi Brewing Company
Nikos Ridge, grew up in Eugene and moved to the East Coast to pursue an education and career in finance. After graduating from New York University, working on the Stock Exchange floor, and living the hustle-and-bustle of city life, he heard the calling of the Pacific Northwest and returned to his hometown in 2003. In 2006, Ridge met brewer Jamie Floyd over a pint and soon after established Ninkasi Brewing Company. In the early days of Ninkasi, Ridge wore many hats. From drafting the very first business plan to providing a one-man local distribution service – loading up each and every keg and driving it to its final destination in his Ford Ranger – to selling in tap handles, brewing and packaging. Working closely with local restaurateurs and bar owners, Ridge quickly established Ninkasi as a craft beer staple of Eugene. Transitioning from his role of CEO to President in May 2017, Ridge helps lead the strategic direction of Ninkasi.
CEO, Craft Brew Alliance
Andy Thomas has served as Chief Executive Officer for Craft Brew Alliance (CBA) since January, 2014, where he brings more than two decades of leadership experience in consumer packaged goods and the beer and beverage industries to his role. As President of Commercial Operations for CBA from 2011 to 2013, Andy helped establish the company’s distinctive portfolio strategy which combines the power of national lifestyle brands such as Kona Brewing Co. with strong, authentic regional craft brands. Prior to joining CBA, he served as an independent consultant and senior advisor to The Monitor Group, a global management consulting firm. From 1995 to 2007, he spent 12 years at Heineken, working with brewers and beers in more than 55 countries across four continents, and served as president & CEO of Heineken USA from 2005-2007. He 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.
Chief Marketing Officer, Uinta Brewing Company
Jeremy Ragonese joined Utah’s largest craft brewery as Chief Marketing Officer in July 2016. Prior to his move to Salt Lake City, Jeremy had served as the Director of Marketing for Boulevard Brewing Company since 2006, where he led the marketing efforts for one of the craft beer’s most respected brands. Before joining the beer industry, he served in a variety of leadership, strategic, and creative roles within the advertising field, and in 1999 joined three partners to form CHRW Advertising, an award-winning creative agency located in Kansas City, MO. Jeremy is a graduate of Pittsburg State University and holds a Master’s degree from Syracuse University. He has proudly served on the boards of directors for AAF-KC, the AAF-KC Foundation, and the Children’s Mercy Hospital Cancer Center Auxiliary. Jeremy has also served on the Brewers Association’s Marketing and PR Committee, and is the former president and founder of the Boulevardia Festival in Kansas City.
Co-Founder, Three Weavers Brewing Company
Lynne Weaver is the founder and president of Three Weavers Brewing Company in Inglewood, California. Lynne leads all aspects of the brewery, including operations, finance and sales. Three Weavers Brewing Company is an independent craft brewery with a mission to build a positive sense of community through the collective passion for craft beer. Three Weavers is one of the largest independent craft breweries in Los Angeles County and currently expanding production and distribution on the West Coast. Led by award-winning Brewmaster, Alexandra Nowell, Three Weavers craft beers have received critical International acclaim, winning a World Beer Cup Gold Medal in 2016, a GABF Silver Medal in 2017, a European Beer Star Bronze in 2017, and the Australian International Beer Awards Best IPA and Champion International Beer in 2018. Three Weavers is proudly brewed in Inglewood, California.
Chairman of the Board, Pabst Brewing Co.
Eugene Kashper CEO and Chairman of the Board Eugene Kashper is the CEO and Chairman of Pabst, America’s largest independent brewer. He brings over twenty years of experience in the beer industry, including creating and/or launching more than 50 brands of beer and beverages and 10 breweries. Since taking the helm at Pabst in 2014, he has premiumized the company's core brands, strengthened its sales and distribution platform and forged exciting new partnerships. Eugene began his career in the beer industry in 1994 with The Stroh Brewery Company of Detroit, Michigan in international sales, where he worked with many current Pabst brands, including Old Milwaukee, Schaefer, Schlitz, Colt 45, and Stroh’s. He graduated from Columbia University in 1992. Eugene resides in Los Angeles with his wife and three children.
Chief Economist, Brewers Association
President, Tenth and Blake, Craft and Import Business Division, MillerCoors
Pete Marino is the President of Tenth and Blake, the craft and import business division of MillerCoors. Tenth and Blake is responsible for incubating five great craft partner breweries which include: Saint Archer; Hop Valley; AC Golden; Revolver; and Terrapin. In addition, Tenth and Blake’s import portfolio includes Peroni, Pilsner Urquell and Grolsch. Tenth and Blake recently expanded into the non-alcohol segment with an acquisition of California-based Clearly Kombucha. Marino also serves as Chief Public Affairs and Communications Officer for MillerCoors, overseeing Public Affairs, State and Federal Government Affairs, Corporate Social Responsibility, Environmental Sustainability, Brand PR and Communications. Marino holds an MBA from The Anderson School at UCLA and a BA-Journalism from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. He is active in his community and lives in the Chicago suburbs with his wife Jennifer and their three kids.
Partner & Chair, Alcoholic Beverage Practice Group, Pepper Hamilton
Alva Mather is partner and chair of Pepper Hamilton’s Alcoholic Beverage Practice Group and co-chair of the Food and Beverage Practice Group. Alva is a business lawyer, litigator and first-chair trial attorney with more than a decade of experience who has established herself as a leading attorney in matters affecting the highly regulated alcoholic beverage industry. She has advised breweries, distilleries, wholesalers, distributors, and restaurateurs on all aspects of manufacturing, distributing and selling alcohol. Alva is an active writer and speaker and on social media at @alcohollawyer.
President of Craft, Anheuser-Busch
Felipe Szpigel is the president of Anheuser-Busch’s craft division, The High End. In this role, oversees a portfolio that includes brands like Stella Artois, Shock Top, Goose Island, Golden Road, Blue Point, 10 Barrel, Elysian, Four Peaks, Karbach, Breckenridge Brewery, Virtue Cider, Devils Backbone, Veza Sur, and SpikedSeltzer. Szpigel’s appreciation for great beer and amazing experiences led him to Anheuser-Busch InBev 17 years ago in Brazil as a global management trainee, and he never looked back, rising through the company’s sales organizations, including region sales vice president in Brazil and global vice president of trade marketing, based in the US. A lifelong learner and explorer, Szpigel currently resides in New York City with his wife Paula and daughter Stella. He holds a master’s degree in business administration from Brazil’s IBMEC and a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Escola Politécnica da Universidade de São Paulo.
Founder, CERIA Beverages
Keith Villa is a third generation Coloradan, whose higher education began with an undergraduate degree in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology from the University of Colorado, Boulder. His first job out of school in 1986 was with Coors Brewing Company, conducting molecular biology research on yeast. In 1988, Keith and his wife, Jodi, traveled to Belgium where Keith earned a Ph.D. in brewing science and fermentation biochemistry from the University of Brussels. Keith is credited with creating Blue Moon Brewing Company in 1995 as an operating unit of Coors, which later became MillerCoors. Blue Moon’s Belgian White, garnished by a Valencia orange slice, grew to become the number 1 craft beer in the U.S. During this time, and Keith became a well-known brewmaster in the industry, appearing in Blue Moon TV commercials. Now retired from MillerCoors after 32 years, Keith and Jodi are focusing on the next stage in their careers – the creation of non-alcoholic brews infused with THC that offer consumers a socially acceptable and responsible way to enjoy cannabis. These new products will be offered by their CERIA Beverages Company and sold first in Colorado.
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.
Founder, Evergreen Herbal
Marco Hoffman is the CEO and Founder of Evergreen Herbal. Marco originally began his career as a cinematographer where he worked for networks such as National Geographic and The Food Network. In 2008, he witnessed firsthand the drastic benefits of cannabis as a medicinal aid and made the decision to enter the cannabis industry. After much success in California and the creation of the iconic 4.20 Bar, Marco turned his attention north to Washington state, founding Evergreen Herbal in 2013. Today, Evergreen Herbal is the largest cannabis-infused edibles producer in the State of Washington. The company has the highest quality control standards in the industry, with the most responsible packaging and labeling standards possible. Marco and his team are committed to providing the same great quality products to the recreational market as they have been for the medical industry all these years.
President - Craft & Specialty, Constellation Brands
Ben Dollard is the president of Constellation’s craft & specialty beer division and a member of the beer leadership team. In this recently appointed role, Ben is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Constellation’s craft & specialty beer business. Ben joined Constellation in 2001 as the senior vice president marketing of Pacific Wine Partners (PWP), a joint venture between BRL Hardy of Australia and Constellation Brands. Ben was later appointed President of PWP where he played a key role in Constellation’s acquisition of Blackstone, Rex Goliath and Black Box, turning PWP into one of the fastest growing premium wine companies in the U.S. He later served as the senior vice president of Constellation Brands International before being promoted to Chief Growth Officer. Most recently, Ben held the position of SVP – Chief Marketing Officer for the Wine & Spirits Division. Before joining Constellation Brands, Ben began his beverage career in Adelaide, Australia, with BRL Hardy Wine Company in international sales and marketing before moving to the company’s U.S. headquarters in Washington, D.C., where he assumed the position of company president.
Former 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.
Founder, Camden Town Brewery
Jasper Cuppaidge started out brewing cask ales in the basement of his pub, The Horseshoe in Hampstead. Unable to find locally brewed beers he loved for his other bar taps, he set out to open a Brewery in a quest to make the world’s best lager. In 2010 Camden Town Brewery opened in the railway arches of Kentish Town West station, since then the brewery has been devoted to championing the style and using modern techniques to convert a whole generation of beer enthusiasts into lager lovers. Camden Town’s second brewery in Enfield is set to open next year.
Co-Founder, Odell Brewing
Wynne Odell is co-founder and CEO of Odell Brewing Company in Fort Collins, CO. Starting in 1989 with her husband, Doug, and sister-in-law, Corkie, the trio had no grand plans, but after five years of a draft-only format, bottles were introduced and rapid growth ensued. 26 years later, Odell Brewing Company ranks 34th in size among craft breweries in the U.S. Odell is a Colorado-centric company, with 65% of its sales coming from Colorado. With the addition of Texas in 2014, it now distributes in 11 states. Wynne, Doug and Corkie undertook two transactions in July, 2015 that sold the majority of their stock to a combination of an ESOP and a trio of long-term managers. Having chosen legacy over maximum wealth, the three founders sleep well at night. Wynne, Doug and Corkie, along with 3 of their children, remain active at the brewery. Wynne currently chairs the Colorado Brewers’ Guild Board.
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.
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