Northeast region Nominees:
Chris Ericson- Lake Placid Pub & Brewery
This past year has been uncharted territory for everyone in the brewery world, and the entire world in general. As we look to both the immediate and long term future, it is important to have leadership at the NYSBA which has experience with the political and wholesale relationships which will be crucial in moving our industry forward. As current president, and an original member of the NYSBA, I am confident that I can be an asset to the organization at this critical time in New York brewing. Most importantly, I truly enjoy working with the other Board members, the brewery members, and allied members who are all dedicated to beer and brewing in our state.
Christopher Ericson has owned and operated The Lake Placid Pub & Brewery since he founded the company in 1996 at the age of 24. In June 2016, he opened a new brewpub in Lake Placid, Big Slide Brewery & Public House. He is also the owner of The Lake Placid Craft Brewing Company, which is the distribution side of the business. Chris is currently the President of the New York State Brewers Association and is a member of the brewing industry’s national trade group, the Brewers Association, where he sits on the national Brewpub Committee.
Mr. Ericson has been a guest lecturer at Williams College, SUNY Plattsburgh, Paul Smith’s College, Lake Placid High School, the North Country Alliance, and Northwood School, teaching classes in entrepreneurship, restaurant economics, food & beverage management, microbrewing, marketing, and social media.
Chris & his wife of 20 years, Catherine, run all their businesses together, and currently live in Lake Placid with their daughter, Grace (15), and their son, CJ (11).
Long Island Nominees:
Rich Vandenburg – Greenport Harbor Brewing
Our region of Long Island has grown tremendously over the past few years with new and growing brewery operations. The formation of the LI Guild/Chapter has been a testament to that engagement and interest in protecting and benefiting our region within NYS. There have been a host of good ideas within our meetings and the energy and focus continues to be refined. Local CBC events, greater politico engagement and larger focus on tax benefits, BID incentives and support are ideas within our reach.
While having served on the Board for these past years, I am very proud of the fact that I have been able to contribute to the organization on a state level. Serving on the Executive and Governance Committees, I have authored the By-Laws for the Guild, created the Brewer’s Bill of Rights with fellow board members, pushed for greater transparency and accountability with finances, lead the argument that we need to have regular voting for board seats, and participated the many successful legislative agenda items we have passed. These are only few of the things that I am most proud of.
Certainly, a background as an attorney helps and while that may be a specific tool that allows me to help push organization forward, it is secondary to my passion for good beer, local success and team loyalty. I want to turn those skills and that attention now to Long Island and push our Guild/Chapter to the front of NYS and continue the success that we have had with our statewide organization tactics to our local level.
So I am asking for the opportunity to serve you for another term as the State Guild Representative in order to continue to turn greater focus on Long Island’s growing and very respectable craft beer presence and brewery business culture.
Central Region Nominees:
Marc Schulz – Prison City Pub & Brewery
Statement: For many years I have been on the outside looking in to the New York brewing scene and admired the work the association has done to grow and promote NYS breweries. I would be very honored to bring whatever knowledge and experience I can to the board in effort to continue to watch our industry grow and thrive here in New York State and beyond.
Bio: My career in craft beer started as a server at a small brewpub in Stowe, VT in 1994. Since, it has taken me on a ride with stops at The Lake Placid Pub & Brewery (jack of all trades, master of nothing), Don Scammell, Inc (distributor route sales), Boston Beer/Sam Adams (account manager, key accounts manager, district manager), Ithaca Beer Company (sales manager) and TJ Sheehan (Craft sales manager). Currently, I serve as the mouthpiece/eye candy at Prison City Pub & Brewery working for the true brains, braun and beauty of the operation, my wife, Dawn Hearns Schulz. In summary, I live and breathe craft beer, but, honestly, I’m just a craft sales person with almost 30 years of experience in every tier. My best skills happen to live in distribution and distributor relations. I take the business of beer very seriously with an aggressive approach to sales. With that said, I feel I can add a lot of insight and value from many perspectives as we all navigate our way through challenging and changing times. Plus, I’m devastatingly handsome and wicked smaht. Even my mom says so.
Ian Conboy – Lucky Hare Brewing
As a founding member of a small business here in The Finger Lakes, I have experienced every step along the way of what it takes to create a successful New York State Farm Brewery. Lucky Hare Brewing Company has grown from a 3bbl brewhouse in a 100-year-old barn, to a state-of-the-art production facility in Watkins Glen. From this growth and gained knowledge, I believe I can represent the Central Region while being able to share the experience of what it takes to operate a brewery. The support from the NYSBA over this past year has been paramount to our success and I would like to contribute as much as possible to help this continue. If I am awarded the seat, I will draw on my years of experience, both good and bad, to help lift our great association while continuing to showcase our amazing craft beer and brewing community.
Ian Conboy is a founder of Lucky Hare Brewing Company and has served as Vice President since 2014. Beginning originally as a brewery producing less than 300 barrels per year, Lucky Hare is now operating 2 separate taproom locations and a new production facility in Watkins Glen, NY. Ian has held every position in the brewery and taproom and now focuses on sales and marketing throughout the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions. Ian was a Marine Biologist until leaving that career to focus entirely on producing delicious farm brewed beer here in the Finger Lakes. He has been a guest lecturer for Cornell University, Experience the FLX, The Schuyler County Historical Society, and the Sciencenter of Ithaca. Originally from the Philadelphia area, Ian now lives in Watkins Glen with his wife Denise and two-year-old son Wolfgang Xavier.
Issac Rubenstein – Middle Ages Brewing