Brewers Association Code of Conduct

The Brewers Association Code of Conduct codifies its commitment and responsibility as an industry to respect the law, promote and consume beer responsibly, and eliminate discrimination, harassment, and bias of all types.

The Brewers Association Code of Conduct, developed by the Board of Directors in collaboration with the Governance and Diversity committees and staff, was adopted by the board as official policy on August 6, 2020. 

Code of Conduct Complaint Process

The complaint process aims to hold our peers accountable for unacceptable behavior while pursuing an educational path forward for a more professional, responsible, inclusive, and respectful environment.

The Brewers Association Code of Conduct Complaint Process was developed by the Brewers Association Board of Directors in collaboration with the Governance and Diversity committees and staff, and was adopted by the board as official policy on September 10, 2020.

The complete complaint process procedure can be found here.

Who can file a complaint?

Any active professional division Brewers Association member can file a complaint against another member or members.

What actions and activities are eligible for the complaint process?

Any alleged violations of the Brewers Association Member Code of Conduct that occurred on or after the date of issuance of the Brewers Association Member Code of Conduct, or August 6, 2020, are eligible for filing and review.

How are complaints filed?

All complaints should be filed online via the Code of Conduct Complaint Intake form.

What is the complaint process?

Once a complaint is filed via the Code of Conduct Complaint Intake form, the Brewers Association will acknowledge receipt of complaint within five (5) business days. Brewers Association staff will confirm membership and eligibility, as well as review submission for completeness and, if needed, request additional information. Brewers Association staff will then submit the complaint to the independent review panel. The panel has the power to dismiss complaints deemed frivolous, untimely, or otherwise improper, and may stay proceedings where the same conduct is subject to a government investigation or other proceeding. Unless dismissed or stayed, in no later than sixty (60) days following acknowledgment of complaint, the panel will issue its written findings and recommendations to the Brewers Association Board of Directors. Within thirty (30) days of receiving the panel’s recommendation, the board shall decide what actions to take. A final decision to remove a member requires a two-thirds majority vote by the board. The complete complaint process procedure can be found here.

How long will the complaint process take?

The complaint process review and subsequent recommendation may take up to 90 days following acknowledgment of complaint. The complete complaint process procedure can be found here.

Who is on the independent review panel?

The panel consists of three impartial business professionals with experience in fields related to potential areas of complaint (i.e. alcohol beverage and employment law, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) best practices, and marketing). The panel does not include individuals directly working at craft breweries to ensure third-party integrity and minimize potential conflicts of interest.

Why are there only three people on the independent panel?

Three individuals are common practice in appellate courts, arbitrations, and other third-party independent review panels. The Brewers Association has precedent with a panel of three outside experts to review Advertising and Marketing Code grievances.

Who is the final arbiter of the decision?

The Brewers Association Board of Directors shall consider the panel’s recommendations and make the final decision.

What are the potential types of remediation?

Remediation methods may include censure, membership conditioned on a member taking certain remedial actions, removal from membership for a set period, or indefinite removal from membership. Remedial actions may include educational activities including reading material, webinars, and facilitated conversations with subject matter experts to build knowledge and awareness in areas related to the complaint.

How will the BA enforce remediation?

Where a member fails to take the steps required to remediate particular conduct, the board may remove the member from Brewers Association membership.

Why is the Brewers Association not considering complaints for incidents prior to August 6, 2020?

The complaint process specifically enforces our Code of Conduct. Our publication of the code puts members on notice of what we expect of them. We do not think it is appropriate nor fair to punish a member for conduct in violation of rules that the member did not know at the time it occurred.

What is the “statute of limitations” on filing of complaints?

The panel will have latitude to determine whether a member waited too long to file a complaint. We recognize that a complaint related to certain conduct may need a greater time allowance than other potential violations. Members are encouraged to bring complaints as soon as practical to promptly help improve the climate of our industry and avoid the problems that arise when memories fade and information is lost.

Why didn’t the Brewers Association incorporate the Code of Conduct and Procedures for Removal into the Bylaws?

We amended the Bylaws to authorize removal and give the board the power to adopt procedures for doing so. Both those changes are stated very generally. We need to anticipate the possibility of changing the Code of Conduct or Procedures as we gain experience in using and applying them. Leaving them outside the Bylaws will give the Association more flexibility in the future, as changing the Bylaws takes more time and effort. We have followed the same approach with many other important Association documents like our statements of Purpose and Core Values.

Code of Conduct Complaint Process Procedure

After reviewing the above documents, please submit your complaint via the online Code of Conduct Complaint Intake form.

Code of Conduct Complaint Review Panel

Tawny Alvarez

Tawny Alvarez

Tawny Alvarez, Partner in Verrill’s Employment & Labor Group and Co-Chair of the firm’s Food & Beverage Group, enjoys helping small and large companies in the food and beverage community stay in compliance with state and federal laws and regulations, while simultaneously maintaining a culture that works for the organization. She represents retail organizations and manufacturers that produce wine, beer, ice cream, and other specialties, as well as restaurants and bars throughout the Northeast. Tawny is a frequent author and speaker on topics for the brewing community including anti-discrimination training, implicit bias training, manager training, public accommodations, and serves as editor of the firm’s blog, Lawyers on Tap. Tawny is a graduate of Thomas College, with a major in Business Management, and The Elizabeth Haub School of Law. Prior to moving into private practice, she clerked for state and federal judges across the country, including in the Middle District of Pennsylvania and the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

Dr. LaNita Gregory Campbell

Dr. LaNita Gregory Campbell

Dr. LaNita Gregory Campbell is the director of the Office for Racial and Cultural Engagement at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Her office is committed to the work of inclusive community building, racial justice, and education for the campus community. She is passionate about empowering people to build coalitions and use their collective voice for change.

A Los Angeles native, Campbell received her undergraduate degrees in Spanish and Gender Studies from the University of Southern California. She received her MA in Latin American and Caribbean Studies and PhD in Gender Studies from Indiana University. Her doctoral work explored the racialization of HIV/AIDS and the social constructions of gendered communicable diseases. Prior to coming to Emory, she was the inaugural postdoctoral fellow for Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Delaware and an Assistant Dean of the Weppner Center for Leadership and Service-Learning at Florida Atlantic University.

Gloria Materre

Gloria Materre

Gloria L. Materre, principal for Materre & Associates, P.C., is a former regulator having served as the Executive Director of the Illinois Liquor Control Commission. She is well-versed in alcohol regulatory compliance matters on all three tiers, licensing, and regulatory/trade practice counseling and enforcement, navigating the TTB and state and local commissions. She has also worked with distributor clients and has handled commercial matters and agreements related to the industry.

Materre was appointed by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn to serve in executive leadership roles in state government. In 2009 she served as his Deputy Chief of Staff and was later appointed to serve as Executive Director of the Illinois Housing Development Authority and the Illinois Liquor Control Commission, allowing her to further utilize her abilities to bring positive change across the state. Prior to her stint in government, Materre built a successful national practice as principal of Materre & Associates, P.C. from 1995-2009, with her team servicing clients in the media and entertainment industries and practicing in real estate and corporate law. Relaunched in June 2017, Materre & Associates, P.C. continues to service client needs with the addition of the valuable knowledge gained in government advising clients on alcohol regulatory and government matters.