Breakthru Beverage, Brown-Forman Hold Second Annual Presidents’ Meeting and 1870 Society Awards in Washington, D.C.

Jun. 14, 2017

The second annual Breakthru Beverage and Brown-Forman Presidents’ Meeting took place June 7-8 in Washington, D.C. with executive and corporate leadership in attendance from Breakthru, as well as Brown-Forman’s division and territory leadership teams from around the country.

Breakthru Beverage Group Co-Chairman Charlie Merinoff, President and CEO Greg Baird and Vice Chairman Danny Wirtz, along with EVPs Kevin Roberts and Brian Albenze met with the Brown-Forman team, including North American Region National Sales Director Johnny Manuel and Executive Vice PresidentPresident of North America and Latin America Jill Jones to share ideas and align on key priorities.

As Brown-Forman’s largest worldwide customer, Breakthru’s performance is critical to their success — and each year, associates from all levels of Brown-Forman and Breakthru Beverage are inducted into the prestigious 1870 Society for outstanding contributions to the Brown-Forman North American Whiskey Business. Induction into the 1870 Society is the only sales and marketing award in the spirits industry where associates from wholesalers and suppliers can earn the same recognition. Four Brown-Forman associates earned the award this year, including Division Portfolio Manager Robert Goode, On-Premise Manager Alexis Arons, National Account Manager-Casinos Loni Gray and On-Premise Manager Brianna Smith.

The awards ceremony took place the second night of the Presidents’ Meeting, and those awarded received recognition, along with a long weekend for two at an exclusive resort and a custom-designed gold ring signifying membership to this exclusive group. Two-time winners have two diamonds added to their rings.

This year, Jeff Mangold from Breakhru Virginia and Kyle Rivera from Breakthru Florida earned their third consecutive trip to the 1870 Society Induction ceremony, and will additionally receive 25 shares of Brown-Forman stock. Two-time winners include Daren Balch from Breakthru Florida and Loraine Abreu from Breakthru New Jersey. Additionally, Breakthru Eastern Region President Kevin Dunn was inducted for his contributions and superior performance for Maryland and Washington, D.C.’s on-premise channel.

Chairman Emeritus Ray Herrmann was also inducted for his lifetime contribution to Breakthru Beverage Group, Brown-Forman and the North American Whiskey business.

Other winners include:

  • Chris Howard, Breakthru AZ
  • Melissa Walters, Breakthru CO
  • Alexis Edney, Breakthru DC
  • Daniel Burke, Breakthru DE
  • Chris Forbus, Breakthru FL
  • Tony Winiecki, Breakthru FL
  • Dave Whalen, Breakthru IL
  • Lennie Youck, Breakthru IL
  • Katie Lonergan, Breakthru IL 
  • Dave Houseknecht, Breakthru MD
  • Andrew Robertson, Breakthru MN
  • Maggie Myers, Breakthru NV
  • Samantha Beedle, Breakthru PA
  • Darterian Moore, Breakthru SC
  • Michelle Fines, Breakthru VA
  • Tom Milazzo, Breakthru WI

Congratulations to all of this year’s winners! 

Group shot of 1870 Society winners in Washington, D.C.
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