Breaking boundaries: Fawn Weaver, Uncle Nearest CEO

Author and entrepreneur Fawn Weaver was researching a book about Nathan ‘Nearest’ Green, the enslaved Black man who taught Jack Daniel distilling, when her life took a turn and she ended up starting a whiskey brand that honours him. She tells SB how her groundbreaking marque came about. Fawn Weaver was a writer in pursuit of a love story when she first started researching Nathan ‘Nearest’ Green. Weaver’s interest was piqued by a cover article…

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Industry needs more people of colour in ‘critical roles’

The response to the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement must result in more people of colour holding “critical roles” in the spirits industry, the global brand director of Jack Daniel’s has said. Matt Blevins was speaking to The Spirits Business last month following the launch of the Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative, which aims to boost diversity across the American whiskey industry. He said: “Quite simply, we want more African-Americans and people of colour in…

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Uncle Nearest appoints ‘first’ African-American master blender

Tennessee whiskey brand Uncle Nearest has named Victoria Eady-Butler as its master blender, believed to be the “first-known” African-American person to hold the title. Eady-Butler is the great-great-granddaughter of the whiskey brand’s namesake, Nearest Green, who was the first African-American master distiller. “It’s difficult for me to put into words what the creation of this brand has meant to me and my family,” Eady-Butler said. “Being able to contribute to my great-great-grandfather’s whiskey-making legacy as…

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