How did you get into the beer industry? Why does beer matter to you?
I've been in the beer industry all my career but initially on the periphery, and I came to it through the PR and marketing route. As the craft beer world grew so did my interest and passion for the subject. I was lucky enough to begin my long relationship with the Brewers Association back in 2006 and I gradually took on more responsibility. My role widened until in 2019 when I was appointed American craft beer ambassador for Europe. It's an honor and a privilege to work for the Brewers Association and I'm incredibly proud to represent them either when traveling overseas or at home in the UK. For me, beer is not just a career but a way of life. I love the wide variety of flavors and aromas found in beer. It’s super versatile and makes the perfect food accompaniment. I love the beer community and the people who make this industry special. Everyone is friendly, welcoming, and united in a shared appreciation of this beautiful beverage. It’s a uniquely collaborative space and I count myself very lucky to be associated with some of the most talented brewing minds in the industry.
Why do you judge at the World Beer Cup? What does judging at the World Beer Cup mean to you?
Judging in the World Beer Cup is the pinnacle of my beer journey and the gold standard in beer judging. It’s like competing at the Olympics! The quality of the competition is second to none — from the world class quality of the entries to the high standards of the judges and the professional, smooth-running organization behind the scenes. Of all the competitions I’ve judged around the world, the World Beer Cup is the biggest, most prestigious, most international, best-organized and most professional of them all — in my humble opinion, of course! Being selected as a judge for the World Beer Cup is a huge honor and fills me with pride. I love judging because it focuses my mind on everything I’ve learned about beer and brewing. Much like an Olympic athlete, I have to be at the very top of my game and that’s an exciting and thrilling prospect. I have only judged one World Beer Cup so far (2023 in Nashville) but was completely blown away by the standard of entries, quality of the judges, and organization of the competition. It was an enormously rich and rewarding personal experience and one I hope to repeat again soon.
What else would you like the world to know?
I play hockey (that’s field hockey to my American friends!) for a Club in southwest London and have done for many years. It’s great fun, a chance to run around and blow away the cobwebs before a beer in the bar afterwards. Last season we were undefeated and won promotion to a higher league. This season may be different! I’m married with three grown up children and one very lively dog.