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2017-2018 Candidates for Board of Directors


Regular Member Candidates

Associate Member Candidate


Regular Member Candidates


Brandon Ade, Manager of Blacklands Malt

Guild Member Since: The Beginning?

What is your personal vision for the craft malt community?  I would like to see the guild serve as a community builder for us smallsters who have embarked on the same treacherous and unproven path of bringing malt back to a regional level. I would like to see the guild facilitate building this community through events, travel, outreach, and benefits. We should talk more.

Why are you interested in serving on the Guild’s Board of Directors (BOD)? The guild is driven by volunteers, all of which are strapped for time. So it is imperative we step forward to help lead the guild if it is going to survive.

What skills, resources, and connections do you feel you will be able to contribute to the Guild’s Board? I hope my familiarity with most of the Guild members will help when it is necessary to reach out to members. After being in full time production for a number of years I have some useful knowledge that can be passed down to others.

What do you hope to get out of service on the Guild’s BOD? I would like to see the Guild develop more member benefits and develop greater connections throughout our small community. A lot of times it feels like while we are geographically diverse, as a community we err on the side of tight-lipped competitors. I would like to see this change where the Guild fosters better connections and promotes face-to-face interactions.

What is one thing that your fellow Guild members should know about you? When I put my mind to something I dedicate a lot of energy. I expect this energy to be reciprocated with those I work with. This can make me difficult to work with!  Personally, I live in NW Austin with my wife Samantha, son Hadwin, and two fur-babies Riker and Barley.


Andrew Martahus, President of Haus Malts

Guild Member Since: 2015

What is your personal vision for the craft malt community?  I want to build upon the already great community of malt house in the guild that help and support one another. This should lead to an improvement in the art of malting for every member who participates and stay on the cutting edge of technology and malt development. It will be through high quality malt and personal relationships with our communities (farmers, brewers, employees, other malt houses, etc.) that will allow craft malt community to thrive.

Why are you interested in serving on the Guild’s Board of Directors (BOD)?  I have benefited from interacting with numerous members through the guild forum and webinars and I want to give back to this great group by giving my time, knowledge, and problem solving skills. Second, I’m interested in working with other malt houses to establish quality standards, new tasting methods, and potentially collective marketing. Lastly, I want to see the bigger picture of the industry and the trends it may be following.

What skills, resources, and connections do you feel you will be able to contribute to the Guild’s Board? I graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a Bachelor’s in Chemical engineering. My ability to not only understand, create, and improve processes is helpful, but my ability to convey the idea to other engineers, designer, fabricators, brewers, and the general public is essential. As a younger member I can give a unique perspective to the board with respect to generational trends.

What other long term volunteer opportunities have you been involved in, including service on other Boards? During my sophomore year, I was a WUSA (Washington University Student Advisor), we helped incoming freshmen throughout the year as a more relatable support resource than a RA. My senior year I became part of the Social Programming Board that planned events for students, in particular, I helped arrange the monthly happy hour that we put on.

What do you hope to get out of service on the Guild’s BOD?  First and foremost, I hope to learn. Not only to learn more about each malt house and get to know the owners, but to learn best practices in the industry. That will help me improve my craft and make the best malt I can. It will be the first time I see how industrial organizations are run to help their members, but make sure business ethics are followed. Lastly, I hope to learn how collective decision are made and affected.

What is one thing that your fellow Guild members should know about you?  I like to bake and cook, combined with my love for beer lead to Haus Malts. It was not my intention to start a business after college, but it has been one hell of a ride so far.


Joel Alex, Founder & Maltster at Blue Ox Malthouse

Guild Member Since: 2014

What is your personal vision for the craft malt community?  Our community is an exciting confluence of beer and agriculture that I believe has enormous potential for innovation and positive impact in beer, agriculture, and economy. My vision for the craft malt community is for us to reach this potential with the highest standard of excellence possible. Never one to shy from lofty goals!

Why are you interested in serving on the Guild’s Board of Directors (BOD)? I tend to be something of a serial entrepreneur and find myself most engaged when I am helping something I care about grow and positively develop. 

What skills, resources, and connections do you feel you will be able to contribute to the Guild’s Board?  Non-profit and community organizing background with extensive board experience that can help our new organization continue to develop strong priorities, visioning, and organizational structures for good governance and strong positioning in these early days. I bring skills and experience gained from Blue Ox Malthouse—creative financing, project management, and grant writing/reporting to name a few—and have also stayed connected to the national community through annual events such as Farmer Brewer Winter Weekend and the Guild’s Annual Meeting.

What other long term volunteer opportunities have you been involved in, including service on other Boards? Please list and describe:

  • CISV (Children’s International Summer Villages), Multiple Positions, 2002-2012: International youth leadership organization. Facilitated trainings, participated in visioning, and coordinated events on the local, regional (New England and Canadian Maritimes), and national levels while serving in multiple board, committee, and advisory roles locally and nationally.
  • Mitchell Institute, Alumni Council, 2012-2015: Maine scholarship program founded by Senator George Mitchell. Develop engagement strategy and conduct programming, events, and targeted communications.
  • The Ecology School, Board of Directors, 2013-Present: School invested in teaching the science of ecology and the practice of sustainability. Provide leadership through a period of active growth and development for the school including board growth, programming expansion, and acquisition of a new campus. Secretary since 2017.
  • Downeast Friends of the Folk Arts, Nominating Committee, 2014-2017: Vet and nominate candidates for leadership positions in the organization which focuses on promoting traditional music and dance in Maine.

What do you hope to get out of service on the Guild’s BOD?  I am a “visioning person”. Being part of a larger vision and helping to realize that vision gives me energy and excitement. I am excited to take the energy from Board Service back to my region, community, and malthouse.

What is one thing that your fellow Guild members should know about you?  I lived out of my car for the first 18 months of starting Blue Ox Malthouse—I guess I can sometimes come across as intense, but when I believe deeply in something, I do what it takes to get the job done!


Brent Manning, Founder of Riverbend Malt House

Guild Member Since: 2013

What is your personal vision for the craft malt community?  The craft malt community will continue to thrive for the foreseeable future. The focus on quality, flavor, and transparency will remain at the forefront as we move forward. We are at an exciting crossroad of science, sustainability, and consumer interest as we help chart the next phase in the development of craft beverages.

Why are you interested in serving on the Guild’s Board of Directors (BOD)?  As a founder of the guild, I have a vested interest in helping to navigate the next phase of our growth. We have accomplished a tremendous amount in the past few years, but there are many important steps left to take. These include expanding our quality/safety focus, consumer education efforts, and academic partnerships. I also hope to play a role in transitioning the next wave of board members into leadership roles within the community.

What skills, resources, and connections do you feel you will be able to contribute to the Guild’s Board?  I have spent the last 6 years serving as an advocate for this industry. During that time, I have developed a strong network of contacts in the agricultural, academic, and craft brewing sectors. I have strong public speaking skills, technical knowledge, and real world experience that can benefit the stated goals of the guild in the years ahead.

What other long term volunteer opportunities have you been involved in, including service on other Boards?Prior to my tenure with CMG, I served as founder and President of Cape Fear Biofules, a non-profit focusing on renewable energy in Wilmington, NC. I also serve on the advisory board of Carolina Ground, L3C, a local flour mill that focuses on sourcing from organic growers throughout the South.

What do you hope to get out of service on the Guild’s BOD?  I have really enjoyed my time on the board and have gained new insight from everyone that I have served with during the past four years. As we bring on new members and transition roles, I hope that this trend will continue!

What is one thing that your fellow Guild members should know about you?  I am turning 40 this summer and could possibly be launching into an entertaining midlife crisis! Oh, and I also love a good saison!


Associate Member Candidate


Chris Swersey, Supply Chain Specialist, Brewers Association

Guild Member Since: 2013

What is your personal vision for the craft malt community?  Hundreds of independent, innovative and sustainable family businesses which consume locally grown malting barley and consistently provide high quality malt to brewers, who in turn brew the best beers on Earth, thereby fostering a connection of community all the way from farm to beer drinker.

Why are you interested in serving on the Guild’s Board of Directors (BOD)?  I have been a fan ever since the foundational CMG meeting at the 2014 CBC in Washington DC. The craft malt community feels like my craft brewer community did 25 years ago – new, vibrant, inquisitive and above all, passionate. I’ve enjoyed my activity and engagement on the periphery to date, and can’t wait to become more involved in the middle of this group.

What skills, resources, and connections do you feel you will be able to contribute to the Guild’s Board?

  • Nearly 30 years of experience in craft brewing
  • Outstanding technical and practical brewing knowledge
  • Very good technical malting knowledge
  • Outstanding experience in technical committee and subcommittee work and governance
  • Access to Brewers Association technical and human network assets
  • Hundreds (thousands?) of brewing and malting industry connections

What other long term volunteer opportunities have you been involved in, including service on other Boards? Please list and describe:

  • Barley Improvement Committee (2012 – present): AMBA’s lobbying arm, monitors ag policy year round, lobbies congress and USDA for ag policy favorable to barley production. BIC service is entirely voluntary (except for 2 staff members)
  • Hop Growers Association (HGA) Sustainability and Best Practices Working Group (2016 – present): advise hop industry on best practice requirements of brewing industry, develop collaborative tools that satisfy brewer and regulatory requirements
  • Upper Salmon Basin Watershed Advisory Committee (2001-2004 ish): native and anadromous fish and water conservation, bringing together water users (primarily cattle ranchers and growers), regulators, wildlife managers, legislators to facilitate endangered species recovery and fulfill regulatory compliance while keeping producers on the land
  • Salmon, ID Homebrew Club Board (2008 – present): founding member and board member of active local homebrew club
  • I also serve on Hop Research Council (2011 – present) and BMBRI (2016 –present) boards – these are not voluntary since BA pays for membership in both organizations. But hundreds of hours spent between meetings is voluntary and in addition to the minimum requirements of BOD members
  • Arizona Craft Brewers Guild (1996-2000): founding member, founding board member, second President. Achieved regulatory relief for beer serving; negotiated brewery use taxation relief, resulting in >$250,000 savings for combined membership

What do you hope to get out of service on the Guild’s BOD?  I hope to foster a community in which N American craft brewers have access to locally and sustainably grown ingredients, allowing them to compete with beer brands that only local brewers can lay claim to, in an increasingly intense market place. That would be a personal win for me. Plus, I dig growers and nerdy brewer and maltster tinkering type folks, so the camaraderie is a huge plus for me.

What is one thing that your fellow Guild members should know about you?  I’m passionate about brewing, and believe that malt is sexy.