2023 NanoCon Speakers

2023 NanoCon Online Speakers

Chris Bernardo Before becoming a professional brewer, Chris worked as a systems administrator. After over a decade of being unfulfilled by the corporate grind, he began his career in craft beer at Empirical Brewery. Eventually he made his way to Omega Yeast 2019 where he started as a production tech. He moved up to Yeast Propagation technician where he learned the rest of the company’s production processes. He’s currently using the knowledge he’s learned and applying it as the Innovation Brewer for the R&D team.  Join Chris on Saturday, November 4, as he speaks about “DIALING IN SOURNESS: pH vs. TA”.
John Blichmann Founder and President of Blichmann Engineering, John has over 25 years of homebrewing experience. John’s passion for designing quality equipment and his experience in product design, testing, manufacturing, and service led him to “retire” as an engineering supervisor so he could launch Blichmann Engineering and focus on designing the best brewing equipment for both homebrewers and  professional craft brewers. John speaks about “1 BARREL OR 5? DETERMINING START-UP BREWERY SIZE” on Saturday, November 4.
Andrew Coplon, founder of “Secret Hopper” and “Craft Beer Professionals,”  Andrew helps breweries nationwide create more memorable and profitable taproom experiences using data-based insights gathered from thousands of visits. He will speak on Friday, November 3, when he moderates out “TAPROOM EVENT PLANNING PANEL. ” 
Audra Gaiziunas is the owner of Brewed For Her Ledger, LLC, a management consultancy firm focused on providing guidance to the craft alcohol community. She is currently serving as Crooked Stave’s Chief Financial Officer. Prior to owning her own company, she served as Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s Controller (2009-2010) and Mother Earth Brewing’s Chief Financial Officer (2011-2014). She has been working exclusively in craft beer for 14+ years and joined the Brewers Association’s Finance Committee in January 2020. A graduate of the Kenan-Flagler One MBA program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Audra possesses 20+ years experience in senior leadership roles in craft brewing, manufacturing, services, non-profits, and startups. She earned her undergraduate degree in accounting and business management (double major) from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa in 1997.
Join Audra on Saturday, November 4 as she shares her expertise with “BUILD A BETTER BREWERY BUSINESS PLAN ” at 12:50 PM and  “ACCURATE SHORT & LONG-TERM BREWERY FINANCIAL FORECASTS at 5 PM.
Ryan Hansen is the founder and lead consultant at Big Pop Brewery Consulting. Ryan holds an MBA and a Professional Brewing and Distilling certificate from the BDC in Knoxville, Tennessee. On top of 10+ years as an avid home brewer, Ryan has experience running a 10-barrel brewhouse and taproom. He loves teaching and helping breweries with everything from marketing, business best-practices, and beer quality and consistency. You can follow Ryan’s brewing adventures on Instagram @BigpopBrewing and find out more about his consulting company at Don’t miss Ryan on Saturday, November 4 when he covers “KEYS TO BETTER BREWERY PRODUCTION PLANNING” seminar.
T. Dustin Hauck is a licensed architect, specializing in the craft beer industry. As an avid home brewer, craft beer enthusiast, and experience with over 200 brewery projects, he possesses the skill, experience, passion and reputation for planning and executing a successful brewery project.  Dustin will speak on Friday, November 3 on “TAPROOM DESIGN BEST PRACTICES”.
Jacquelyn Heitman is a partner in Pasich LLP’s Manhattan Beach, California office and a member of the firm’s insurance recovery practice.  Jacquelyn has extensive experience representing commercial and individual clients in a wide range of complex coverage disputes, including coverage advice, pre-litigation disputes, international arbitrations, and coverage litigation.  Her insurance coverage work includes first and third party claims, bad faith litigation and indemnity recovery.  Jacquelyn is speaking on Friday, November 3 co-presenting the “BREWERY INSURANCE 101 ” seminar.
John Holl For nearly 20 years John has been covering the beer industry as a reporter and editor. In addition to writing several books, including the recently published The Craft Brewery Cookbook, he hosts several podcasts, notably BYO’s Nano Brew Podcast. John will moderate the “NANO BREWERY TRENDS PANEL” on Friday, November 3.
Colin Kaminiski is the R&D Designer for MoreFlavor Inc. . He started homebrewing and probrewing about the same time in 1998. He started working for MoreBeer as a product designer shortly thereafter. He was also working at MoreBeer and as an assistant brewer 2 days a week for Downtown Joe’s Brewery in Napa California. He left MoreBeer in 2004 about a year after becoming the Master Brewer at Downtown Joe’s. He then spent 15 years as the Master Brewer, a one man department producing 750 bbls per year on a 7 bbl direct fired brewhouse. In 2018 he went back to be a product designer for MoreBeer. His responsibilities include designing fittings, pro tanks and homebrewing equipment. Much of the MB product line was designed by Colin. Join Colin on Friday, November 3 when he discusses the seminar “HEAT IT UP: CHOOSING BETWEEN AN ELECTRIC, STEAM, OIL OR DIRECT-FIRED BREWHOUSE”.

Keith Lacy holds a degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has been working for Omega Yeast since 2018. In that time he has been a Propagation Technician, Assistant Production Manager, and is now a Research Scientist in the R&D department. Keith will be presenting on Friday, November 3 with “BEST PRACTICES FOR USING THIOLIZED YEAST “
Ashton Lewis is the technical support and training manager for Brewers Supply Group and the technical editor of Brew Your Own Magazine.  Prior to working in the world of ingredients, Lewis was the Staff Master Brewer and Brewing Group Sales Manager for the Paul Mueller Company. Ashton is a be
Matthew McLaughlin is the Founder of McLaughlin, PC. and also the Founder and CEO of Fertile Ground Beer Co. in Jackson, Mississippi.  Matthew specializes in legal representation for craft breweries and distilleries. On Saturday, November 4, Matthew will lead two seminars during the day: “LEGAL CHECKUP LIST FOR BREWERIES and “BREWERY LAW 101 “.
Candace L. Moon is a San Diego-based attorney who has spent the last fourteen years dedicating her law practice to the craft beer industry.  During the course of her career, she has worked with over 500 craft breweries and craft breweries-in-planning nationwide, handling many different legal areas including business entity formation, alcoholic beverage law, contract review and trademark law. Today, she has minimized her client list to focus more in-depth on a small number of California breweries. Ms. Moon’s undergraduate degree is from the University of Virginia and she attended the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California.  She has been a member of the California State Bar since 2008 and the Brewer’s Association since 2009. Listen to Candace on Friday, November 3 when she speaks about “UNDERSTANDING BREWERY TRADEMARKS & AVOIDING HEADACHES”.
Steve Parkes is a leading industry figure with a national and international reputation. He holds a degree in Brewing Science from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland and has brewed professionally continuously since graduating in 1982. He started the first microbrewery in Maryland back in 1988 and has been a regular speaker at the National Craft Brewers Conference and National Brewpub Conference stage.  Steve is a Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup judge and has hosted the Institute of Brewing Studies “Ask the Expert” Q & A forum.  Steve is also the President and Lead Instructor of the American Brewers Guild and Founder & Brewmaster of Drop In Brewing, both based in Middlebury, Vermont. Join Steve on Friday, November 3 as he speaks on “FROM BREW POT TO BREWHOUSE – SCALING UP HOMEBREW RECIPES TO NANO SCALE”.
Julie Rhodes With over 2 decades of experience in the food and beverage industry, Julie Rhodes is an expert in off-site beverage sales, digital marketing, leadership, team management, and distributor partnership management. She is the owner of Not Your Hobby Marketing Solutions, an educational services and strategic business consulting company built specifically for small to medium-sized craft beverage companies where she teaches owners and operators how to work smarter, not harder. She is also a freelance business journalist and active public speaker, belonging to multiple state brewery guilds and cider trade associations. She was the Mentor of the Year for the Brewers Association in 2022, sits on the BA DEI Marketing and Communications Subcommittee and teaches Digital Marketing certificate programs for the University of Vermont. Julie will guide you through “STRATEGIC EMAIL MARKETING FOR BREWERIES” on Friday, November 3.
Kayla Robinson is a partner in the Westwood, California office of Pasich Law Firm. Kayla has represented insured individuals and entities in a variety of matters including major property damage, business interruption, and theft losses. She has also represented insureds in connection with third-party coverage disputes involving employment practices liability insurance, commercial general liability insurance, and high-net-worth homeowners’ insurance. Kayla is speaking on Fri., Nov. 3  co-presenting the “BREWERY INSURANCE 101 ” seminar.
Dan Russo, Director of Brewing Operations for Oakshire Brewing was born in New Jersey with his formative years of life in Richmond, Virginia. Dan earned his B.B.A. in Hospitality and Tourism at James Madison University. He’s also a graduate of the American Brewers Guild, attending on scholarship from the Glen Hay Falconer Foundation circa 2014. Dan moved to Eugene in 2011 after a brief residency in Newport, OR. He began with Oakshire as the first Public House manager, assisting in its Grand Opening in April of 2013, after which he naturally gravitated toward brewing operations. Dan will speak at NanoCon Online on Saturday, November 4 with the “STAYING ON TOP OF BREWERY MAINTENANCE – BREWERY OPERATIONS ” seminar.
Taylor Seidler is co-founder and creative director of SeaThirst Creative, a full-service design studio with the goal to develop long term collaborative relationships with those in need of top tier creative for their brands & businesses. As an award-winning designer, Taylor specializes in design and branding for breweries, beverage makers, restaurants & bars, and has spent the last 10 years working in and around the brewing industry. Join Taylor on Saturday, November 4 when she leads the “BRANDING FOR START-UP BREWERIES” seminar.
Kary Shumway is Publisher of Craft Brewery Finance, and CFO of Wormtown Brewery in Massachusetts. He spent the last 20 years using finance to help improve financial results in our businesses and Kary now helps breweries, beer wholesalers, and cideries to do the same. His financial training programs have been developed on a new learning platform in order to deliver the best experience available and are designed specifically for non-financial people who have the responsibility of either managing or contributing to the success of business. Kary will talk about  “BREWERY CASH FLOW STRATEGIES” on Friday, November 3.   
John Szymankiewicz is Founder of Beer Law Center, a practice centered on the craft beverage industry. John works with clients to help them achieve their personal and business goals. With a background in chemical engineering and homebrewing, John loves the industry and has dedicated his career to making a difference for artisanal beverage businesses everywhere. John is a BJCP Judge, holds a certification in WSET Level II – Wines, and is the US’s only Certified Cicerone Alcohol Attorney.  John is also the book author of Beer Law: What Brewers Need to Know.  John will lead the “PITFALLS OF BUYING AND SELLING A BREWERY” seminar on Saturday, November 4.
Amy Todd is the Founder and Brewery Laboratory Scientist of Zymology Labs. She offers analytical testing, training, and consulting for the fermented beverage industry.  Amy will talk Friday,  November 3 leading  the “QUALITY CONTROL FIXES: TROUBLESHOOTING QC TEST RESULTS” seminar.
Michel Varda is the Founder of Craft Beer Advisory Services (CBAS), the first and only full-service market research firm exclusively dedicated to craft beer. He began his professional career in market research roles advising some of the nation’s top universities on attracting students and several Fortune 50 companies on improving brand perceptions. In addition to CBAS, he also leads brand perception research at a Fortune 100 financial firm. Combining his research skill with a passion for craft beer, CBAS was born in Fall 2021. Since its founding, Michael has delivered CBAS research to more than 200 breweries in 40+ states and 10+ countries. Join Michael on Saturday, November 4 when he presents “UNDERSTANDING TAPROOM CUSTOMER MOTIVATIONS“.
David Wonder is the Direct Manager for all sales and customer service departments of MoreBeer Pro! On Friday, November 3 David will lead “SMALL-SCALE GLYCOL SYSTEMS” seminar.