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.
I would like to nominate myself, Matt Johnson, as a candidate for the American Homebrewers Association Governing Committee. I have been an avid homebrewer for the last 15 years and a member of the AHA for at least 5. More importantly I believe that I have the qualifications necessary to be an active and productive participant on the Committee. In addition to finding great satisfaction in brewing my own beer I am passionate about helping others learn to brew, taste, and enjoy fermented beverages.
In my professional life I work for a grant-making agency focused on empowering people to serve their communities through volunteerism. I have been engaged in the non-profit world for many years in various roles including managing organizations and sitting on boards of directors. One of the ways that my professional life and homebrewing hobby have converged is through non-profit fundraising. I have donated many kegs of homebrew to local non-profits to support fundraising efforts and thoroughly enjoy this type of partnership. It has given me the opportunity to brew custom beers for a good cause and interact with beer lovers throughout the community.
Recently I started a club in the Reno area called IMBIB (Independent Master Brewers of Innumerable Beverages). We are an informal club but our goal is to help anyone learn to brew or brew better. One of my goals has been to become certified through the Beer Judge Certification Program. Part of my commitment to the club members has been to research the process so that anyone interested can get involved and work towards certification. Already I have been able to find a local judge to administer the tasting test and I have set up a series of study/tasting sessions for the participants.
My passion for homebrewing has also led me to other endeavors such as helping to organize a Craft Beer Tour of Reno during CanFest for some of the brewers and brewery staff who travelled here to participate in the event. We were able to get 4 local businesses involved in the tour and highlight their great products. This was a great way for our homebrew club to support an up-and-coming event and contribute to boosting our local economy.
I would like to learn more about the strategic goals of the AHA to be able to better provide targeted input into the future of the organization. One idea I have for the AHA is to take a role in inspiring homebrewers to give back to their communities by blending their hobby with community service. The AHA has been a supportive entity throughout my time as a homebrewer and I am excited about the opportunity to get more involved through the Governing Committee. I believe that my passion for the hobby and my professional skills will be an asset to the Committee. Thanks for your consideration.