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McKee to succeed Heilmann as Michter’s master distiller

Michter’s master distiller Pamela Heilmann will retire from the Kentucky-based distillery next month and will be succeeded by Dan McKee.

Dan McKee has been promoted to the role of master distiller at Michter’s

McKee, who is currently a distiller at Michter’s, will step into the new role on 1 May. Distillery manager Matt Bell will take over from McKee as distiller.

Heilmann and McKee have worked together for more than a decade, initially at Jim Beam and then at Michter’s.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time at Michter’s and I’m very proud of what we have done here,” said Heilmann. “One of the favourite 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.”

McKee previously worked at the Jim Beam Distillery in Clermont as a distillery operator and was later promoted to distillery supervisor at Booker Noe Distillery.

“I am so grateful to Pam. To work with her and learn from her has been an honour and a privilege,” said McKee. “We will do everything we can to continue Pam’s work and pursue Michter’s goal of producing the greatest American whiskey.”

Bell joined Michter’s after working at Alltech and its Town Branch Distillery, as well as the Wild Turkey Distillery, where he held the role of distillery supervisor.

Michter’s president Joseph J Magliocco added: “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.

“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.”

Michter’s senior management team continues to include master of maturation and executive vice president Andrea Wilson.

The 2019 release of the Michter’s 10 Year Single Barrel Straight Bourbon next month will mark the final expression produced by Heilmann. It will have an RRP of US$130 per 750ml in the US.

Earlier this year, American whiskey producer Michter’s opened its Fort Nelson Distillery in Louisville.

In addition to the Fort Nelson site, the company owns Michter’s Shively Distillery in Louisville, as well as its 145-acre farm and operations in Springfield, Kentucky.

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