Chris Thorne, the Beer Institute’s vice president of communications, has announced his resignation from the organization effective May 29.
Thorne plans to open his own “media and issue advocacy” group in Washington D.C. and continue working with the Beer Institute as an independent consultant. He will represent the lobbying group as its communications counselor until the organization fills his vacant position, BI president Jim McGreevy told Brewbound.
“Chris was our first in-house vice president of communications and he is a model for the kind of person we will look to bring in as his successor,” McGreevy said. “As an advocacy organization – for our members and a category – you can’t just be talking to people inside the building. You need to talk to people in the community so that they understand the importance beer has in Washington D.C. and America. That is what Chris did so well and what he will continue to do on behalf of beer.”
Thorne began his time at the BI in April 2012, helping to rebrand the organization and execute the launch of various industry campaigns such as “Know Your Drink” and “Brand Beer.”
“Being involved in regulatory issues but also representing the category to the broader public is the piece of the job that Chris excelled at,” said McGreevy.
Not surprisingly, the BI is Thorne’s first official client, though McGreevy said it’s unknown how long the BI intends to work with his yet-to-be named venture.
McGreevy said the Beer Institute is currently searching for a replacement and will look to “have a team that is at full strength” by early summer.