Tennessee Distillers Guild with Map

The Tennessee Distillers Guild, representing 23 of the states licensed Distilled Spirits Plants – DSPs including Jack Daniel’s Distillery, the oldest licensed distillery in the country, has elected a new President and Board of Directors.

Kris Tatum - General Manager - Old Forge Distillery
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Kris Tatum, General Manager of Old Forge Distillery

The Guild has selected Kris Tatum, General Manager of Old Forge Distillery as the groups new President. Tatum has a background in the construction and restaurant industries. He started the Old Forge Distillery project in Pigeon Forge, TN in 2012 and opened the doors in June of 2014.

“2016 presents the Guild with opportunities to show off not only where we’ve been as a globally recognizable brand, but also where the future is heading in the Tennessee spirits industry,” Tatum said.

This marks his second term on the Board of Directors, and he follows Jeff Pennington and Billy Kaufman in the role of President.

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“This is an exciting time to lead the [Tennessee Distillers] Guild. The spirits industry is booming in Tennessee and we have some game changing projects in the works,” said Tatum. “We’re more ready than ever to claim our history and heritage as Tennessee distillers.”

The Board also appointed Jeff Arnett, Master Distiller at Jack Daniel’s Distillery, as Vice President, Greg Eidam II, Head Distiller of Sugarlands Distilling Company, as Treasurer, and Tyler Crowell, Chief Operating Officer of Corsair Distillery as Secretary.

Other Board member selections for 2016 include:

  • Chris Canale, Founder of Old Dominck Distillery
  • Heath Clark, Founder of H Clark Distillery
  • Allisa Henley, Distiller of George Dickel Distillery
  • Billy Kaufman, President of Short Mountain Distillery
  • Jeff Pennington, Co-founder of Speakeasy Spirits

Founded in 2014, the Tennessee Distillers Guild is the state’s voice for Tennessee Whiskey and spirits issues. There are currently 23 (DSP holder) members.

Tennessee’s registered distilleries have skyrocketed in the last six years from three to more than 40. Laws allowing the manufacturing of distilled spirits across the state changed in 2009, opening the door for the resurgence. New distilleries include entrepreneurs as well as the resurrection of pre-Prohibition brands. Together, worldwide brands and micro craft distilleries are working together to bolster Tennessee’s heritage as a producer of quality whiskey and spirits.

The Tennessee Distillers Guild was founded in 2014 as a non-profit trade association to responsibly promote and advocate for the distilling industry in Tennessee through the collective voice of its members.

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