Robert Hess

Forming The Guild

48 posts in this topic

As we move toward officially establishing ourselves as the Washington Distillers Guild, I think it will be important for us to reach out to "sister" organizations across the state and seek input, advice, and cross-organization support.

One obvious group to reach out to would be the Washington Brewers Guild.

http://www.washingtonbrewersguild.org

A list of their currend officers are here:

http://www.washingtonbrewersguild.org/who_officers.htm

Do any of you know any of them? It would be best to approach any friends in these organizations if possible before just doing a "cold call".

Here is the list repeated just for ease of access:

Directors

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If we make contact with the Brewer's guild, I would suggest we keep any detailed info exchange quiet until after this Thursday's testimony. Anyone have any more info on this DRAW organization?

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I agree. Our objections really aren't that far fetched, and are now well known to those who would need to be able to build up a defense against them.

Part of my thought about reaching out to the brewers guild isn't so much to build opposition against the bill, but to build awareness of the guild.

-Robert

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I know a few of them.

Will probably be playing poker this week with Drew or Jeff Smiley's partner, which will be a good time to bring it up.

My good friend is Ed's (B. Bay) brewer so could easily contact him.

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If we want to start working on a possible "state-sanctioned" seal, this is the section in the CFR that deals with prohibited practices, with the relevant sections in bold.

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I think that looks workable.

I think "our" crest should be incorporated in the "award", which means our crest can't have the state of washington image on it, or george washington, or anything that might make it appear to be a sanctioned entity of the state of washington. I could even percieve having the "word" Washington on it could be problematic. so perhaps our crest (as used in the award) just has our initials? "W. D. G."

Perhaps the "full" version of our crest has a band around it which says "Washington Distillers Guild"... and for this "award" we replace that with something like: "Micro Distillers Award Of Excellence"... and we work up some specific regulations necessary to get that "award".

-Robert

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I was thinking we could draft some strict criteria, pretty much like Dry Fly has and get the state to authorize it.

We come up with a contract application where a manufacturer applies to use the seal on a given product, affirming that X% of the product is made from Washington produce.

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Oh, and by the way, it's official:

February 1, 2008

Congratulations:

Your online filing has been completed.

Company Name: WASHINGTON DISTILLER'S GUILD

UBI Number: 602-799-736

Effective date: 1/23/2008.

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I'd like to nominate the following officers:

Robert Hess: President (chair, whatever)

Steven Stone: Vice whatever

Matt McSweyn: Secretary (dude's always taking notes)

Margot Arellano: Treasurer

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I was thinking we could draft some strict criteria, pretty much like Dry Fly has and get the state to authorize it.

We come up with a contract application where a manufacturer applies to use the seal on a given product, affirming that X% of the product is made from Washington produce.

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I'm not that dry. ;)

I was thinking of an alternative to the 51% requirement for craft distillers. If it's state authorized, it'll mean a lot more.

We can come up with something like this:

post-1-0-98156200-1339797403_thumb.png

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Ahhh... I get it, you aren't trying to create something that will recognize "our" definition of "craft distillers", but one that will take the place of the "Made In Washington" language in the bill, and one which won't be applicable to several of your products.

From the wording of the above legal stuff, I "think" the image of Washington State is problematic, since it could be seen as implying that WA/Gov was behind it.

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Well I'm all in favor of trying to set up a standard! We should work up a preliminary set of guidelines, and graphics "package", and then try to figure out exactly how to get it "approved" for use. Does anybody know of any similar standards that we could use as a reference? I've sent some e-mail to the folks behind the "Washington Grown Chicken" program (www.CluckCluck.org) to see if they can provide us with their guildlines (strange that they are listed on their site).

-Robert

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Ok, here is a slightly old thread, but looks appropriate for kicking up once more to use for making plans about continueing to formalize our guild.

I would like to submit that we schedule another meeting within the next 30 days to address some issues that we should move forward on.

So far, all of our meetings have taken place in Seattle, as well as at "Liberty" up on Capital Hill, since it "appears" as though the majority of the membership is located in this vacinity. As forum membership has increased, is this still the case? Do we need to consider an alternate location?

Are Weekday Evenings better for people, or would Weekends work good? I am sort of thinking that a early Weekend meeting somewhere might result in more results since we won't be winding down from working all day... but maybe that's just me. If folks who are seriously interested in participating in the next meeting could respond with any issues about meeting in Seattle, as well as recommendations for when to meet, we can hopefully get something planned asap.

A suggested agenda would be:

1. Appointment of a "Board Of Directors" for the Guild - The members of this board would be responsible for maintaining and supporting communication and to oversee the general process and procedures of the "Washington State Distillers Guild".

A "Call For Nominations" should be gathered beforehand, with anybody interested in being a member of the Board of Directors submitting their name for consideration. It should be pointed out that while this appointment is "volunteer" (ie. no pay :-) it will be expected that all members of the board will play an active role in the activities of the guild.

The Board of Directors will be up for re-appointment annually, at which time new members may be added.

2. Nominations tendered for Officers - Officers shall be President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Voting will be taken on by the Board of Directors, and will happen during the week following this meeting (to allow any BOD not physically present to be able to participate).

A "Call for Nominations" should be gathered beforehand. And it will be assumed that any officer is also a member of the board of directors.

3. Membership - Open for discussion at this meeting shal be the determination of the membership levels, and the appropriate annual dues to collect for each level. While membership should be focused on "distillers" in "Washington", provisions should be considered for both non-distillers as well as non-Washington residents. In addition to individual membership, corporate membership should be discussed, as well as a discussion as to what the benefits are to be offered both to individual and corporate members. Site/Information access for non-members should be discussed as well.

4. Guild Projects - Identification of projects, events, and operational needs should be discussed, and if possible assigned. This will include the drafting of informational documents and materials which will be available on the site, as well as general information packets which we can mail out to members and the press. I would like to propose we also discuss the "Seattle Cocktail & Spirits Festival" which I have been looking into, and which I feel would be a good opportunity for the Guild to manage the "Pacific Northwest Spirit Awards" portion of. Management and improvments of the website and its offerings should also be discussed.

5. Distillers Role Call - We should attempt to identify as many people/companies within Washington State who are working towards opening up their distilleries and identify their current status.

6. Guild Associates - We should attmept to identify other/similar organizations who should be approached to discuss cooperative relationships. Washington Brewers Guild, American Distillers Institute, Oregon Distillers Guild, United States Bartenders Guild, Oregon Bartenders Guild, Museum of the American Cocktail, etc. And identify an outreach program for them to make sure that proper awareness and levels of interaction can be achieved.

-Robert

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There are other parts to Washington other than Seattle.

How about meeting somewhere in the middle?

Don

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Yeah... I know... which is why I asked the question :->

Would it be silly to suggest someplace like Levenworth? It's a little over 2 hours from Seattle.

Another option would be to try a "Virtual" meeting, where we could include out-of-towners via a web-cam link?

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Leavenworth and the Greater Wenatchee area is a good halfway split. I also wouldn't be against a Spokane gathering if given enough time to coordinate time off from my "day" job. I have a mini-van that can hold up to seven folks from the Seattle area if people are willing to split gasoline costs.

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Plus we just got us some runnin water and some cities have them new fangled outhouses. I think the stagecoach runs at least twice a day.

You all could come over to our distillery. We use oxen power to run the still. It's a huge wheel and it doesn't turn very fast, but as long as we got a good supply of hay, it works. We can schedule a day when we are running 192 proof, and have a contest to see who can lay under the still the longest! That person automatically becomes president.

Don

We do have accounts in Wenatchee, Leavenworth, and Lake Chelan that would provide us space for a meeting.

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... a contest to see who can lay under the still the longest! That person automatically becomes president.

Why not?

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Yes, but my time on that trip will be very limited. We have new equipment arriving and being installed.

Don

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