Fresh, foamy and deliciously hoppy, craft brews and sustainability seem to go hand-in-hand. This is one industry where brewers tend to take an interest in being green and consumers are willing to pay a premium over the mass-produced competition. But, what makes craft beer an industry that is particularly interested in sustainability? Is it a unique target market or something special about beer itself?
Jenn Vervier, Director of Strategy and Sustainability
Jenn Vervier started on the bottling line at New Belgium Brewing Company over 19 years ago. She became NBB’s first Chief Financial Officer and later the Chief Operating Officer. As the Director of Sustainability her responsibilities include the sustainability management system, corporate responsibility reporting, greenhouse gas accounting, natural resource management, legislative advocacy, and philanthropy. As Director of Strategic Development, Jenn oversees New Belgium’s strategic planning process, public/private partnerships, and property development—including finding and securing the home of NBB’s first site outside of Colorado in Asheville, NC. Jenn’s a collaborator and a connector, creating opportunities to expand New Belgium’s business role model practices both within and without the brewery. Jenn received a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities from Washington College in Maryland. She also holds an MBA in Finance from Regis University and completed the course work for a Masters in Applied Ethics from Colorado State University.
Chris O'Brien, Author of Fermenting Revolution: How to Drink Beer and Save the World
In 2009 Chris became American University's first Director of Sustainability. He is responsible for sustainability policy, planning, outreach and implementation. Previously, he directed the Responsible Purchasing Network at the Center for a New American Dream, and earlier served as Managing Director of the Green Business Network and the Fair Trade Federation. He is Treasurer of the Fair Trade Resource Network, and co-owns the Seven Bridges Organic Brewing Supply Cooperative. He serves on the Electronic Products Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) Advisory Board, the Green Advantage Board, The Sustainable Purchasing Council board of directors, and the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education's STARS Steering Committee. In 2006, Chris authored the award-winning book Fermenting Revolution: How to Drink Beer and Save the World (New Society Publishers). He twitters about greening the American dream at twitter.com/GreenAU
. He has a BA in Liberal Studies from Penn State and a MS Science and Technology Studies from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.