LOUISVILLE, Ky. — With Michter’s Master Distiller Pamela Heilmann’s decision to retire from full time work effective May 1st, the distiller is implementing its succession plan. Michter’s Distiller Dan McKee will be elevated to master distiller, and Distillery Manager Matt Bell will become distiller. When the 2019 bottling of Michter’s 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon goes on sale this May, it will mark the final Michter’s release during Heilmann’s tenure as master distiller.
“After we hired Pam, she brought over Dan with her from her prior company. It quickly became apparent that he was extraordinarily talented and would someday be an outstanding Master Distiller,” said Michter’s President Joseph J. Magliocco. “Pam’s contributions to Michter’s have been incredible. She is a truly great distiller, and a truly great person. We’re all thrilled that she has agreed to stay on in a part-time capacity as a master distiller emerita, and I know Dan and Matt will be terrific in their new roles.”
McKee and Heilmann have worked together for over a decade, first at Jim Beam and then at Michter’s. Heilmann commented, “I’ve really enjoyed my time at Michter’s, and I’m very proud of what we have done here. One of the favorite parts of my job has been coaching and training younger people as they come up in the industry. Dan is a brilliant distiller, and I am confident that with him and Matt Bell at the helm, our production is in great hands.”
Says McKee, “I am so grateful to Pam. To work with her and learn from her has been an honor and a privilege. We will do everything we can to continue Pam’s work and pursue Michter’s goal of producing the greatest American whiskey.”
After moving to Kentucky from Indiana to pursue his dream of making whiskey, McKee went to work at Jim Beam Distillery in Clermont as a distillery operator and later was promoted to distillery supervisor at Booker Noe Distillery. Prior to becoming Michter’s Master Distiller, McKee has held the positions at the company of distillery manager and later as distiller.
To his new position as Michter’s Distiller, Bell brings his experience garnered at Alltech and its Town Branch Distillery along with experience garnered at Wild Turkey Distillery, where he held the position of distillery supervisor. Before becoming Michter’s Distiller, Bell held the position of the company’s distillery manager. Michter’s senior management continues to include its Master of Maturation and Executive Vice President Andrea Wilson. She commented, “Pam has been a tremendous leader, and I’m very proud of the team we’ve put together here at Michter’s. Dan and Matt are world class distillers.”
The 2019 release of Michter’s 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon will go on sale in May. It is 94.4 proof and it sells for a suggested retail price of $130 in the U.S.
Michter’s has a rich and long legacy of offering traditional American whiskeys of uncompromising quality. With each of its limited production offerings aged to its peak maturity, Michter’s highly acclaimed portfolio includes bourbon, rye, sour mash whiskey, and American whiskey. In November 2018, a single bottle of Michter’s Bourbon sold at a charity auction for over $17,000. In January 2019, Michter’s was named the #1 Top Trending American Whiskey brand by Drinks International in their Annual Brands Report. The selection of Michter’s US*1 Sour Mash by The Whisky Exchange as its 2019 Whisky of the Year marked the first time that a whiskey from the United States had achieved that honor.
In addition to Michter’s Fort Nelson Distillery, which just opened to the public, the company has Michter’s Shively Distillery in Louisville as well as its 145-acre farm and operations in Springfield, Kentucky. For more information, please visit www.michters.com, and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.