Oscar Wong

Founder, Vice President, Schmoozing and Cleanup Guy

Highland founder, Oscar Wong, was born in Jamaica in 1940. At 18, he left the island to attend the University of Notre Dame, where he completed his masters in Civil/Structural Engineering. After retiring early from a successful engineering career that took him all over the country, Oscar landed in Asheville in 1994 and started Highland Brewing “as a hobby” in the 3,500 square foot basement of Barley’s Taproom in downtown Asheville.

He is an active member of the Rotary Club and other community-minded volunteer endeavors. He was awarded Small Business of the Year in 2007/2008 and the William A. V. Cecil Award for Leadership in Hospitality in 2011, both by the Asheville Chamber of Commerce.

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Backed into it by helping an award winning brewer get started


What do you like about the beer industry?

The people and the special social lubricant, beer


What is your favorite quote?

In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is strength, in water there is bacteria


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Thomas Jeffereson, a practical intellectual


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Content


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

A Belgian triple, transparent, layers of complexity, depth, easy to meet


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Only one? Tour the breweries, restaurants, visit Biltmore, The Arboretum


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Interacting with an exceptionally talented, fun staff

Leah Wong Ashburn

President/CEO, Family Owner

Leah has been a fan since the beginning in 1994 - Oscar is her father. Cheering him all the way, she worked in the printing industry for 15 years before joining the brewery in 2011. She is proud to be part of a company that has changed Asheville. Her favorite part of the job is the fact that “Drinking Highland beer is PR. Drinking other beer is Market Research.

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I think we all know the answer to this one…


What do you like about the beer industry?

Fun and community are baked into it. 


What is your favorite quote?

Comfort the disturbed. Disturb the comfortable.


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My parents


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Happy! Well traveled, open minded, thankful, loved and loving.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Gaelic Ale - balanced, reliable, high quality but not high maintenance, happy around food


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Hike around Craggy Mtn, pack a picnic, tube the French Broad, hang out in our Meadow, and catch the sunset on our roof. Then the dance party begins…


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

We elevate and celebrate beer and business, people and place.

Chuck Whitehead

Vice President of Sales, Business Development

How did you become involved in brewing? Campus Rep at the University of Tennessee for Miller Brewing Company in 1976.

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing? Was the General Manager of Skyland Distributing in Asheville from 1992-2002. We purchased the Highland Brand from Smoky Mountain in 1995 and got to know Oscar and the Highland Team. I have been talking to Oscar about working together for almost 20 years.

What’s your favorite beer? The one I am drinking with my family and friends.

What is your favorite quote? “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do”. John Wooden
 
What do you like about the beer industry? Competitive Fun

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.? My Mom

What do you want to be when you grow up? Deserving all I have.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style. Highland Oatmeal Porter…a Methodically Aggressive – Unexpected Total Package of Taste and Style

Brock Ashburn

Vice President of Operations

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Married the President


What do you like about the beer industry?

I can embrace my nerdiness unabashedly.


What is your favorite quote?

Everybody does well when EVERYBODY does well!


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Teddy Roosevelt


What do you want to be when you grow up?

An old nerd


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

NEIPA - Beautiful Aroma with low bitterness…


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Hike, bike, and swim!


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

I get to work with fun, happy, and intelligent people!

Liza Van Cauwenberghe

Controller

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Begged my way into an internship and then politely refused to leave.

What do you like about the beer industry?

I love the laid back atmosphere and that everyone is free to be their weirdest selves- and we’re pretty weird!

What is your favorite quote?

Guess what, I have flaws. What are they? Oh I don’t know. I sing in the shower. Sometimes I spend too much time volunteering. Occasionally I’ll hit somebody with my car. So sue me.— Michael Scott

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Oscar Wong - I swear I’m not sucking up. He’s successful yet humble and gives back wholeheartedly to people and the community. And he has that laid-back Island attitude where nothing gets to him!

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Knowledgeable and kind.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Duchesse De Burgogne- I’m Belgian, and a perfect blend of sweet and tart!

If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

I’d take a hike off the Blue Ridge Parkway- probably Craggie Pinnacle because it’s short with amazing views, walk around downtown and see the buskers and window shop, eat at any one of the amazing restaurants and see some live bluegrass. And visit Highland of course!

What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The people and the beer are the best!

Megan Best

Accounting Coordinator

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I had a really lucky day searching online job postings.


What do you like about the beer industry?

It is great how breweries collaborate with and support each other, even while in direct competition. It’s about building up, not breaking down.


What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

From the Crescent City to the Great Salt Lake, it ain’t what you got, it’s what you make.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Those who fights to protect the planet and improve the lives of everything that inhabits it.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

A fine, upstanding, pilsner of the community.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Berliner Weisse: German roots, usually tart but rarely bitter.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Hike to my favorite swimming hole or float down the French Broad river, followed up by dinner and a concert.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Working with folks who are passionate about their jobs and that everyone pitches in and works across departments to solve problems.

Tres Howell

Pilot Brewer

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

unequivocal good fortune


What do you like about the beer industry?

The beer. The people are pretty cool too…


What is your favorite quote?

No one here gets out alive!


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

I look up to Scotty, because he’s 2 feet above my head every time I walk out of the pilot room.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Who said I have to grow up?!


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Golden Monkey. Leaving that to your imagination.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Get on the river.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Is this a trick question? Which kid is your favorite?

Matt McComish

Supply Chain Manager

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

A Highland staff member


What do you like about the beer industry?

creativity, the people, drinking beer


What is your favorite quote?

My philosophy is basically this, and this is something that I live by, and I always have, and I always will: Don’t ever, for any reason, do anything, to anyone, for any reason, ever, no matter what, no matter where, or who, or who you are with, or where you are going, or where you’ve been, ever, for any reason whatsoever.”


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Alan Alda


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Assistant to the Regional Manager


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Orval 


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Bearwallow mountain for sunset. 


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Working with great folks.

Kitty Price

Key Account Director + Sales Team Leader

How did you become involved in brewing?

How did you become involved in brewing? I haven’t ventured into home brewing yet but I have lived in Asheville for a long time and like many WNC resident have gained an appreciation for tasty craft beer. Drinking beer has been my involvement in brewing.



How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I interned for several months during grad school and asked for a job. Lucky me, I got one!



What’s your favorite beer?

Currently Little Hump Spring Ale



What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.”         -Thomas Jefferson



What do you like about the beer industry?

The delightful people.



Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

Paul Wellstone



What do you want to be when you grow up?

Healthy, wealthy and wise.



Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

India Pale Ale, I travel well.

Jamie Rowe

Head Brewer

How did you become involved in brewing?

I got a job running a brew pub when I was in Atlanta.



How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

By dropping off a well-timed resume.



What’s your favorite beer?

I am partial to a good IPA.



What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

We are going to turn this team around 360 degrees.” - Jason Kidd, upon his drafting to the Dallas Mavericks.



What do you like about the beer industry?

Good atmosphere, good people, good music, good beer.



What do you want to be when you grow up?

Harrison Ford as Han Solo in the orginal Star Wars movie.



What do you want to be when you grow up?

A great golfer. No wait, a great husband. Then, a great golfer.



Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

I’m like a lager in that I am well-aged.

Trace Redmond

R&D Brewer

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Hop supplier friend hooked me up.

What do you like about the beer industry?

Supportive, fun community and its fun to make beer!

What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

“Get’er done”, “It’s go time”

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

My Mom and Ron Swanson

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Not sure if I want to grow up, still on the fence.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Barrel aged Scotch Ale. Super awesome with a kick at the end.

If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Hike and go to a brewery. Eat some tacos.

What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Nice people, nice beer. What’s not to like?

Mark Conti

Area Sales Manager - Sales Team Leader: WNC, TN, VA

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Started coming in on my day off from my other two jobs and scrubbing…persistence paid off.


What do you like about the beer industry?

There’s so much! From recipe creation and collaboration, to meeting other passionate and creative industry members, to being part of a team that makes a high-quality and consistent product, and working with a great distribution network. Never a dull moment! 


What is your favorite quote?

May the best of your past be the worst of your future.


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Whomever has made a living doing what they love, and still loves what they do.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Surrounded by family and good friends.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Saison - pretty complex and some people think they’re strange.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Cruise down the French Broad River with a 15pk of Daycation IPA!


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Working for an independent and family owned company that cares for and about it’s employees.

Alan Robinson

Bartender

How did you become involved in brewing?

Moved to Asheville, got my mandatory homebrew kit and started brewing beer.

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I would like to think that it had something to do with my resume, personality and knowledge of beer but like most here have said, “It doesn’t hurt to know someone on the inside.”

What’s your favorite beer?

I’ll stick with Highland nere. Black Mocha Stout is dark, toasty and smooth…and when you know the right people, totally free!

What’s your favorite saying, quote?

Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana.”

What do you like about the beer industry?

The simple fact that I can get paid doing something I love.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

Regan, my best friend for the past 10+ years. She has e ery trait that one could ask for in a friend and is proof that sometimes a dog is as good as any man!

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A child at heart.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

An American Stout - My roots come from Ireland but I am uniquely American. Usually unfiltered, more approachable than most people would expect, extremely dark but always smooth and sweet.

Toby Arnheim

Field Sales Manager

How did you become involved in brewing?

Started homebrewing the week after I graduated from college and haven’t looked back since.



How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

During a beer tasting  I was able to trick Leah into giving me an interview.



What’s your favorite beer?

Oatmeal Porter….freakin good



What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

If  you’re going to be stupid, you better be tough.

-My Pop



What do you like about the beer industry?

Being able to learn something new everyday.



Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

My wife.. she really is my better half



What do you want to be when you grow up?

Still growing up.



Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Definitely a Gaelic Ale because it never goes out of style…

J Ferris

Audio/Video Technician

Richie Whitson

Human Resources Manager

How did you become involved in brewing?

I’ve always loved craft beer and did a little homebrewing years ago. Now that I got the job at Highland I’m ready to learn and dive back into it.

How did you find a job at Highland?

Timing, persistence, and the internet.

What’s your favorite beer?

I can’t name just one. Bell’s Hopslam is usually at the top of the list, and Troegs Nugget Nectar, and Highland Black Watch, and Liefmans Goudenband, and…

What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

“We’re not here for a long time, we’re here for a good time!” – Tommy Lee

What do you like about the beer industry?

Great people, community and culture. Having the opportunity to be a part of getting someone’s new favorite beer into their hands.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to?

My mom.

What do you want to do when you grow up?

Happily retired and an expert fly fisherman.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

A Session IPA, I like for the party to keep on going.

Jesse Lapinski

Brewing Team

How did you become involved in brewing?

I bought my first homebrew kit in college and started brewing in various dorm rooms. The girls seemed interested.



How did you find a job at Highland?

The neighbors across the street.



What’s your favorite beer?

My favorite beer from Highland is the Kashmir IPA and my all tome favorite depends on the season but right now it’s the Dark Hollow Barrel Aged Imperial Stout from Blue Mountain Brewery.



What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

ASAP. Whatever htat means. It must mean, “Act swiftly awesome pachyderm!” - Dr. Suess



What do you like about the beer industry?

The creativity and science behind each beer.



Who is your idol? Who do you look up to?

Mostly my dad because he taught me the skills that I have today, and the guitarists from DragonForce keep me practicing scales.



What do you want to do when you grow up?

I want to be a master of all instruments and a climber of Mt. Everest and an astronaut and a National Geographic Explorer and a Pirate and a bartender at Highland Brewing Company.



Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

An Imperial IPA, they’re complex and high in octane.

Sean Sutherland

Distribution Lead

Nate Corn

Packaging Technician

Tim Oldread

Area Sales Manager - Sales Team Leader: Piedmont NC, Upstate SC, FL

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Preparation and persistence. 


What do you like about the beer industry?

The beer, the challenge, the friends. 


What is your favorite quote?

“We’ll figure it out. We always do. And we don’t have any other choice.”


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

“Lots of people. I rely on many to constantly help me improve.”


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Happy and accomplished. 


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Highland…seems to fit.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Eat a great breakfast, hang with friends, drive and hike the Blue Ridge Parkway, eat a great lunch, float on the river, visit Highland Brewing, eat a great dinner, and sleep well. 


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The people, the beer, and the collaborative work environment. It’s a great work culture.

Jason Unger

Bar Lead

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

One day, a friend said Highland needed help in the parking lot…. That was 5 years ago….


What do you like about the beer industry?

The variety


What is your favorite quote?

I’m the one who’s gonna die when its time for me to die….. so let me live my life the way I want to. -Jimi Hendrix


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

The 14th Dalai Lama, Joseph Campbell


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Don’t know yet…. Probably just happy….


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Black Watch…. Dark but sweet


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Get a tattoo, get a beer, eat some food, see live music.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

My co-workers in all departments

Kevin Kellar

Brewing Team - Head Cellarman

David Bradley

Area Sales Manager - NC & SC Coast

How did you find the job at Highland Brewing?

I loved the beer so much, so I kept asking for a job, and finally got the dream job.


What do you like about the beer industry?

You get to hang out with happy people!


What is your favorite quote?

and this too shall pass…


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

King David from the Bible


What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to own a biker bar on the beach. 


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Blackwatch


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Ride my motorcycle on the parkway.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The family atmosphere!

Megan McArthur

Accounting & Production Data Specialist

How did you become involved in brewing?

I began frequenting local breweries soon after moving to Asheville and became interested in the craft brewing industry. After taking some courses on the subject, I was lucky enough to land a job at Highland.

How did you find a job at Highland?

While browsing upcoming events at the brewery, I saw the job posting on Highland’s website and immediately applied.

What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

I drink, therefore I am.

What do you like about the beer industry?

The unique people that work in the industry and the fun atmosphere. The weekly beer tastings are a nice perk too.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to?

Anyone who follows their passions in life.

What do you want to do when you grow up?

Be a happy and well-traveled person with great stories to tell.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style

Belgian Witbier – I’m easy to get along with like a witbier is easy to drink, yet there is a mysterious complexity about me.

Katie Smith

Brewing Team

Chris McGuire

Packaging Technician

How did you become involved in brewing?

I started brewing in college. Some friends of mine were home brewing, so I figured if they could do it, so could I.

How did you find a job at Highland?

I actually inquired about an internship, but but just missed the opening. I asked if there was anything else that Highland needed help with. “Mountain Medley’s” was the answer.

What’s your favorite beer?

Favorite Highland beer: Black Watch Favorite other beer: Trip to the Woods Maple Scotch ale from Sierra Nevada  

What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

In beer, there is freedom.  In wine, there is wisdom.  In water, there is bacteria.” Also, “It is what it is”, my personal motto.  

What do you like about the beer industry?

There are lots of great hard working, fun-loving people in this industry.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to?

Gotta be Jeff “Puff” Irving, my brewing instructor in school. The man is a fountain of knowledge and fun to be around.

What do you want to do when you grow up?

To do what I love, which is anything that involves fermented beverages.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style

I guess I’m a bit like Gaelic ale. Well balanced, but with a interesting complexity and usually well liked.

Megan Rayfield

Quality Assurance

Pat Kazanjian

Facility Tech

How did you find a job at Highland?

Persistence. Bribery. Persistence. Begging. Persistence and a little more persistence…


What do you like about the beer industry?

Endless variety if flavors that can found in beers. And the people, there are a lot of really cool peeps in the industry.


What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

*nothing I can share here


Who is your idol, who do you look up to?

Mr. Rogers and Homer Simpson



What do you want to do when you grow up?

Grow up?? No


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Homebrew. Some are scared of it, some don’t understand it, some don’t like it, but those that give it a chance end up enjoying it.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Find a place to hike or motorcycle ride


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The people

John Mitchell

Packaging Technician

Tyler Melton

Distribution/POS Merchandise Coordinator

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

It happened via a blessing in disguise and my friendship with our supply chain manager, Matt McComish.  I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity with Highland!    


What do you like about the beer industry?

The many different aspects of the industry itself. Keeping pace with competition, trends, technology, and making a consistent product play vital roles for success. The beer in your glass is much more than the liquid itself.

What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

There is such thing as good grief, just ask Charlie Brown.” - Michael Scott


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

Eddie Vedder



What do you want to be when you grow up?

NASCAR Driver


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Miller High Life.  Such a simple beer that represents enjoying the simple things in life.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Brewery hopping


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Working at Highland you feel a sense of family. It’s an honor to work for the pioneers of craft beer in the Southeast. The ability of our team to adapt to the ever changing environment of the industry speaks volumes to our consistently high quality products.

Drew Ashdown

Brewing Team

Robert Stockdale

Marketing and Graphic Design Coordinator

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Lucked into it, I guess!


What do you like about the beer industry?

Definitely the people. I don’t think I’ve met someone in the industry that I dislike.


What’s your favorite saying, quote, etc.?

Possibility means I can. -Kierkegaard


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc.?

I’d have to say my dad. He is, without a doubt, the nicest and smartest guy I know.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

The cartoon editor at The New Yorker.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

A saison, different from what’s popular and always interesting.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Drive down the Blue Ridge Parkway with the windows down and the music playing.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Being able to get a beer with everyone at the end of a long day.

Amy Heald

Sales Administration Specialist

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

A couple of special connections, good timing and a resume filled with a variety of related work experience


What do you like about the beer industry?

It is so fun and unique! The beer industry in Asheville is quite special. Competition is certainly in the air, but breweries are supportive of one another and the people behind them are extremely talented!


What is your favorite quote?

Be the change that you wish to see in the world” - Mahatma Ghandi


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My family and friends. All of my family - my husband and children, my mother and father, my brother and sister-in-law, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews, all of them. No matter what I do, they are always supportive and proud of me. I don’t know where I would be or what I would do without each of them.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Do I have to grow up? If so, I want to be a great role model for my children; for the future is in their hands.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

I suppose I’m like any high gravity brew - I will make your smile bigger and your heart lighter!


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

I really enjoy getting out in nature more so than perusing downtown. I would hit the trails and check out our beautiful Appalachian Mountains and gorgeous waterfalls. And of course, at the end of the day, head to Highland Brewery for a rewarding, delicious craft beer! 


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

It feels so amazing to be a part of this family. I am honored to work with such talented and caring people. The beer that we produce is of top notch quality and everyone behind it genuinely cares about our products. Until I worked with Highland, I had no idea how much was involved with this business. From the brewery to the taps and shelves in the market, our outstanding beer experiences quite the adventure, every day! Cheers!

Will Horton

Market Development Manager - TN

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

The Internet!

What do you like about the beer industry?

As challenging as the beer industry can be, you still get to have a good beer with friends at the end of the day.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A farmer.

If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Float the French Broad or go see a show.

What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

It’s a great community of people to be a part of.

Alex Souza

Brewer

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Getting connected with some brewers here through mutual friends. Luckily for me there was an opening at the time!

What do you like about the beer industry?

The people! This industry is filled with some of the most creative, intelligent, and humble people I’ve met.

What is your favorite quote?

I’m not a pessimist, I’m an optometrist.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My family inspires me to be a better person every day. Industry-wise I look up to Brad Clark and Art Oestrike because of their community involvement and awesome beer.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to be improving the community through beer and hospitality.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

A nice balanced lager. They can be complex but they are generally easy to be with.

If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Float the French Broad River and hit some breweries.

What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

My co workers and the culture. Beer is my passion but it’s the people that work here that make me excited to go to work every day.

Kerry Rudisill

Quality Assurance Technician

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I wanted to work here so I applied!


What do you like about the beer industry?

I find fermentation science (zymology/zymurgy) very exciting. I also love the Craft community and collaboration surrounding it.


What is your favorite quote?

“And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make” - The Beatles


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My parents & husband


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Happy and healthy if I must grow up : )


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Daycation - I love a good adventure, as much as I love coming back to my own bed!


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Hike, eat, and DRINK BEER.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The people and vision of Highland. Integrity, collaboration, and ambition.

Michael Kissiah

Field Sales Representative - Foothills NC & Upstate SC

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I had just left my job as NC Market Manager for Palmetto Brewing. A mutual distributor partner recommended me to Highland during my hiatus. Turned out to be a great fit for both of us!


What do you like about the beer industry?

I love the passion for our craft, and the community that makes it what it is. 


What is your favorite quote?

“Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.” - Mahatma Gandhi


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My 3 yr old daughter teaches me so much everyday. And I’m a better person in so many ways because of her. So, in a way, despite being shorter than me, I look up to her:)


What do you want to be when you grow up?

A better version of myself.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

I think if I were a beer style, I’d be a Berliner Weisse. I was born in Germany, and I absolutely love that beer style. Slightly sour, but refreshing and enjoyable!


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Walk the streets downtown, and watch the people. What a beautiful culture this town has.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

It feels like a family. Everyone cares about everyone. That’s genuine. And its a very rare thing to find these days.

Dan Vinson

Packaging Tech

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Started as Tour Guide


What do you like about the beer industry?

Lots of people in good moods


What is your favorite quote?

The mother of love emulates the shapes of Cynthia 


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Carl Sagan


What do you want to be when you grow up?

 Astronaut!


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

NEIPA, so hot right now.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

See all the waterfalls 


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Almost all employees stay and share a beer together after work.

Gordon Jones

Field Sales Representative - GA

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Through the company’s website.


What do you like about the beer industry?

The people and all the different products!


What is your favorite quote?

What gets measured gets done.


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My family.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Old, healthy, and happy!


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

AVLIPA - Smells great, in your face, no bad aftertaste.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Go kayaking or tubing.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Drinking super fresh and new beers!

Tim Soto

Field Sales Representative - Florida

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Constantly looking at Highland’s website. 


What do you like about the beer industry?

The comradery amongst other breweries. Great beer.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter. Never can have enough coffee! 


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

I would start my day at the Biltmore Estate, and end at Highland Brewing on the rooftop bar.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

The people culture, the beer.

Tyler Bowlin

Assistant Bar Manager

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

From a friend at a previous job.


What do you like about the beer industry?

There’s beer involved.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Face-to-face relationships with our customers and coworkers! Also beer…Free Beer


What is your favorite quote?

I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.” -Unknown


Who is your idol, who do you look up to?

My grandparents.  They were and are the coolest people I’ve ever known.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Mr. Rogers


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style?

Barrel-Aged Blackwatch, I grow stronger over time.


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Float the French Broad in a tube/kayak/raft followed by a Tourists’ baseball game.

Emily Reeves

Brewery Tours and Beer Gear Manager

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

I posted a photo at a different brewery on social media, and one of my friends who worked here commented on my post, and I was working here within a week from that day! I started out giving tours and selling merchandise back in March of 2018.

What do you like about the beer industry?

Well the beer is a good start. It’s great how pretty much every brewery focuses on the outdoors along with beer.

What is your favorite quote?

Decide what to be and go be it. - Easier said than done, but sung well by the Avett Brothers.

Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

The Barack Obama / Joe Biden friendship.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A healthy mix of Leslie Knope and April Ludgate. Also proud of who I am and what I’ve accomplished.

Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

A White IPA. I have a refreshing presence, but am pale as heck.

If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

I would wake up early and go on a sunrise hike up off the Blue Ridge Parkway, probably at Black Balsam Knob, then I would do a few more short hikes before coming back to town for lunch. In the afternoon I would float down the French Broad River, and in the evening I would hit up the live music scene downtown!

What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

I love how much Highland focuses on sustainability and the community. It’s an amazing company with incredible people and fantastic beer.

Julie Swantek

Retailer Account Manager - WNC

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Preparation and positivity


What do you like about the beer industry?

Upbeat attitudes and commitment to growth, community and beer of course!


What is your favorite quote?

Don’t expect life to change around you unless you are willing to take that change within yourself. -Kia Miller


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

My Dad is my undeniable role model. I have never met anyone so kind, patient, and willing to put others before himself.


What do you want to be when you grow up?

A cooking show host on a ranch in Montana


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Definitely a Pilsner, easy going and best enjoyed outside!


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Visit Highland Brewing!


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

It means so much to me to work for a family owned company with 25 years of industry experience. Our sustainable practices and engrained community values make it an amazing place to work! (and we have amazing beer)

Eeva Redmond

Communications and Community Outreach Specialist

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

 I looked for a brewery that was family-owned, independent, and valued quality and sustainability. Highland is all of those things and I am proud to be part of that story. 


What do you like about the beer industry?

I love the camaraderie and the care we show for our craft, our colleagues, our customer. 


What is your favorite quote?

My Grandmother always said, “Never let the truth get in the way of a good story”.  


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

I look up to many people as I am rather short, but I try not to talk down to anyone. 


What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to write murder mysteries and read them for the audiobook edition. 


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

I once had a colleague describe me as a Grissette; Sounds fancy, ultimately approachable, but still a little overly pedantic


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do? 

I’d try to eat biscuits for breakfast, tacos for lunch, and BBQ for dinner with a beer pairing for each meal 


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

This workplace feels comfortable and familiar. We work hard, we work together, and everyone is there to say cheers when I’m ready for a beer.  

Abbey Temoshchuk

Packaging Manager

How did you find a job at Highland Brewing?

Persistence, good timing, and even better luck


What do you like about the beer industry?

The camaraderie and general encouragement of nerdiness.


What is your favorite quote?

“Change is not something that we should fear. Rather, it is something that we should welcome. For without change, nothing in this world would ever grow or blossom, and no one in this world would ever move forward to become the person they’re meant to be.” –B.K.S Iyengar


Who is your idol, who do you look up to, etc?

Prince & George Harrison


What do you want to be when you grow up?

Content & fulfilled, and helping others feel the same in their lives. Also someone with a lot of goats.


Compare yourself to a beer brand or style.

Is Abbey Ale too cliché? :)


If you were a tourist for a day in Asheville what fun thing would you do?

Get up early to go for a long hike in the Pisgah Forest, followed by a reward beer & food on an outdoor patio with my dog.


What’s your favorite part about working at Highland?

Being in a work environment that cultivates creativity, ingenuity, and innovation, and has fun while doing it!