Hudson Valley Region Nominees:
Hutch Kugeman – Brewery at CIA
It’s been an honor to serve the breweries of the Hudson Valley over the last six years, first as an appointed Board Member and then as the elected Hudson Valley Representative. I feel lucky to have represented your interests on the state level as a member of the Competition and NY Brewer’s Conference committees where we have been able to establish the largest state-run beer competition in the country and a fantastic conference that allows brewers to learn and connect with fellow brewers and members of our industry. Currently I have acted as Vice President of the NYSBA for the past year, Co-Chair of the Governance Committee, and will Chair the new Member Services Committee with the goal of providing more direct benefits to our brewery members and their employees. I hope to continue to represent the Hudson Valley as your elected representative so that we can continue to find ways to help your businesses grow and put more New York brewed beer into the hands of New Yorkers.
Hutch began his brewing career at the award-winning Pelican Pub & Brewery in Pacific City, OR. In 2002, he moved across the country to take a position at Great Adirondack Brewing Company in Lake Placid, NY. While at Great Adirondack he received several GABF, World Beer Cup, North American Beer Awards, and TAP NY medals and was featured in Beer Advocate Magazine. After 8 years at Great Adirondack and a stint at Ithaca Beer Company Hutch moved to the Hudson Valley in 2010 as founding brewer at Crossroads Brewing Company in Athens, NY. During his 5 years at Crossroads the brewery was recognized with multiple medals at GABF and World Beer Cup as well as the Matthew Vassar Cup for Best Brewery in the Hudson Valley in 2010. In 2015, Hutch was selected for his current position working with Brooklyn Brewery and the Culinary Institute of America at the newly built Brewery at the CIA, a combination production and educational facility. At the CIA, Hutch works with culinary students to create beers for the restaurants and student commons of the campus that reflect the high standards of the school while teaching the students more about brewing and the world of craft beer.
Tom Crowell – Chatham Brewing
As the Hudson Valley Representative to the NYSBA board, I would endeavor to continue the fantastic work that has been accomplished in recent years by the Association. The growth in the industry is the result of the hard work and entrepreneurial spirit of our fellow brewers, but ultimately can be traced back to the consumer embracing the products being produced. The Hudson Valley is perfectly situated to be the epicenter for food and beverage tourism in the State. I would like to see further efforts to promote this as an economic development strategy for the region and State, building cross-promotions between allied industries and the agri/culinary tourism. We are fortunate to be brewing in this time, but we need to realistic about future forecasting and need to continue to work hard to ensure continued success.
Tom is the co-founder of Chatham Brewing, which will be celebrating its 15th year of operation in December. His first commercial brewing experience was in 1995 when he worked as the project manager and assistant brewer for Harbor Brewing, a pioneering project on the waterfront in Brooklyn led by Dick Ponzi of Bridgeport Brewing. That project afforded him the opportunity to work with brewers from Long Island to Memphis. Upon moving to the Hudson Valley, Tom saw the opportunity for farm-based beverage production, Tom founded one of the first farm distilleries in the State before returning his attention to craft beer. Chatham Brewing started with a 3.5 bbl brewhouse in 2006 and has since expanded seven-fold, anticipating production in 5,000 barrel range this year. The Chatham brand continues to be 100% self-distributed, and is now widely recognized throughout the Hudson Valley.
W-Central Region Nominees:
Chris Spinelli – Roc Brewing Company
Chris Spinelli, Co-owner and Co-founder Roc Brewing Co., LLC located in the heart of downtown Rochester, serving great beer for 12 years. I am the W-Central Board Member of the NYSBA and Treasurer. I have served on the board for 6 years helping to educate, protect and promote NYS Craft Beer. I co-founded the 585Brewers in the Rochester NY area, a group of all the local brewers in the Rochester area helping each other and raising the standard of craft beer in Rochester. Chair of the NYSBA Competition committee. I am seeking my final term on the board of the NYSBA hoping to make impacts on our community that best serves NYS craft beer for years to come
Capital Region Nominees:
Kevin Mullen – Rare Form Brewing Company
Kevin Mullen is the co-owner and head brewer at Rare Form Brewing Company, a brewery in Troy, New York. Kevin started in the industry as a bartender for a craft beer-focused bar in Colorado in 1998 and started home brewing in 1994. Since then he has lived and breathed the craft beer culture working with brewers in Colorado, Washington, and New York. With more than seven years of non-profit administration experience, Kevin has started three non-profits, currently sits on the board of two, and did post-graduate work on the effectiveness of non-profit boards. Since Rare Form has opened, Kevin has been a part of numerous NYSBA events and lobbied at the capital to represent the needs of all breweries in New York over the past 8 years. As a current board member of NYSBA, Kevin sits on the executive committee and is the chair of the convention committee where Kevin strives to use his collective experience, knowledge from fellow brewers, and passion for the industry to help advocate for all breweries in the capital region and across New York. Kevin firmly believes that all breweries, no matter of size or license, can work together and create an environment that everyone can grow in.