For Immediate Release — April 16, 2014
FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Kentucky Distillers’ Association has bestowed Senate President Robert Stivers with its coveted “100 Proof Award” for his commitment, dedication and support of the Commonwealth’s signature Bourbon and distilled spirits industry.
Sen. Stivers, R-Manchester, is only the third person to receive the prestigious award, which the KDA created in 2009 to recognize elected officials who demonstrate tremendous care, diligence and initiative in promoting and protecting Kentucky Bourbon.
Nominees must receive a unanimous vote of the KDA Board of Directors. It is the highest honor that the state’s iconic Bourbon industry gives to elected officials.
“Senate President Stivers’ bold leadership during the 2014 General Assembly led to the passage of several of the KDA’s top legislative priorities, including the Bourbon Barrel Reinvestment Tax Credit,” said KDA President Eric Gregory.
“We deeply appreciate his tireless work that will create jobs, spur investment and make Kentucky more attractive for craft operations,” Gregory said. “We are proud to honor him with this award as 100 percent proof that he is a champion of our legendary industry.”
KDA Directors, Master Distillers and executives from all 18 member companies presented President Stivers with a commemorative “100 Proof Award” barrel head in a ceremony Tuesday at the Capitol.
“Bourbon is a true signature industry in Kentucky, and I’ve been impressed over the last few years how it’s grown from more than just a drink,” Sen. Stivers said. “It creates jobs, it attracts tourists with the Kentucky Bourbon Trail and it’s a significant part of our worldwide image.
“People have been saying for years that they wanted to help the Bourbon industry, but no one ever did anything about it. I’m glad I was able to help this session, and I’m truly honored to receive this award. Thank you to the KDA and its members for their support and efforts.”
Rep. Susan Westrom, D-Lexington, received the first “100 Proof Award” for her tireless efforts in the 2010 legislative session to modernize Kentucky’s Bourbon sampling laws. Gov. Steve Beshear earned the award in 2012 for his leadership and global support of the industry.
The KDA, a non-profit trade association founded in 1880, is the state’s foremost voice on spirits issues, from taxes to trade and tourism, including coordination of the famous Kentucky Bourbon Trail® and Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour® experiences.
Kentucky Bourbon is a $2 billion industry, generating nearly 10,000 jobs in the Commonwealth with an annual payroll of $415 million, pouring more than $126 million every year into local and state tax coffers and investing $350 million in the last three years in capital improvements.
KDA heritage members include Beam Inc. (Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark); Brown-Forman Corp.; Diageo North America; Four Roses Distillery; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; and Wild Turkey Distillery. Proof members include Michter’s Distillery.
Craft distillery members include Alltech’s Town Branch Distillery, Barrel House Distilling Co., Corsair Artisan Distillery, Kentucky Artisan Distillery, Limestone Branch Distillery, MB Roland Distillery, The Old Pogue Distillery, Silver Trail Distillery, Wilderness Trace Distillery and The Willett Distillery. Educational members include the Distilled Spirits Epicenter.
For more information, contact KDA President Eric Gregory at (502) 875-9351 or visit online at www.kybourbon.com or www.kybourbontrail.com. Kentucky Bourbon Trail®, Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour®, Urban Bourbon Trail® and Bourbon Trail™ are registered trademarks/service marks of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association. Please drink responsibly.