The views and opinions expressed in this statement are those of the candidate and do not necessarily reflect those of the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) or the AHA Governing Committee.
My first batch was brewed Jan 1st 2002. Christmas 2001 my son gave me a Mr. Beer brewing kit and I have never looked back. My first brew was a kicked up Mr. Beer Oktoberfest, brewed with the aide of Charlie’s book, Joy of Homebrewing, ProMash and a couple pounds of DME. Along the way I’ve developed a love affair with all things beer (especially big beers, I call anything under 1.100 a ‘session’ beer).
I have had the pleasure of serving on the Governing Committee for the past 3 years. The AHA has been growing at astonishingly high rates during that time. As a result capacity for the National Homebrewers Conference and National Homebrewers Competition has stretched. The AHA has grown from 15,497 in January 2009 to 29,821 in October 2012 essentially doubling in size in the last 3 years. You have seen the impact of this with the speed that both the National Homebrewers Conference and the National Homebrew Competition sell out far faster than we would like. Well we are working on these (and other) issues, an extra regional has been added and what else to do is still being evaluated. It won’t stop a sellout but additional entries are being accommodated. The 2013 National Homebrewers Conference in Philly will be the largest yet, but it too will sell out and the 2014 Conference will be significantly larger than that. The AHA is growing and working hard at keeping up with the growth.
Clubs are the best resource a brewer has. It is where you can go and discuss the technical aspects of beer and brewing and even bring in your bad beer to figure out what went wrong and how to correct it. Joining a club is the best thing that a brewer can do to improve their brewing. They will then be around brewers, on a regular basis, who have already made the all the mistakes that a new brewer will make. Under my tenure as President of C.R.A.F.T. the club has nearly doubled in size and we continued the very important “Education Corner” portion of the meeting presenting various technical aspects of brewing. The support of homebrew clubs is one area where I hope to help the AHA.
To improve knowledge of the technical aspects of brewing I instituted regular “Beer Appreciation” classes which include preparation information for taking the BJCP exam. I have added other classes to introduce Craft and Homebrew beer to new people and frequently speak at various homebrew clubs around Michigan.
The Internet is a great thing, but there is also a lot of misinformation out there, especially in the form of recipes. To help with this I searched the Internet for award winning recipes and founded BeerDuJour.com as a place to house them. At the time it was, to my knowledge, the only location where you could find a library of proven recipes. Prior to Jamil’s “Brewing Classic Styles” I was publishing his recipes from his “The Brewing Network” shows. I am now supporting a new but awesome resource for the homebrewer as a moderator, the AHA forum.
The bottom line is that I love getting involved and helping people. You will find anyone that runs for the GC will have enthusiasm for brewing and will make an excellent addition to the GC so you can’t go wrong with any of them. What I am asking for is the chance to continue to support you as a member of the AHA Governing Committee and to share my enthusiasm for this great hobby.