Lauren Operations Manager of Ballistic Beer Co What does IWD mean to you? A celebration of women across all disciplines and backgrounds breaking stereotypes, fighting for equality and doing what they love, unapologetically. What does the 2021 IWD "choose to challenge" theme this year mean to you? I personally really identify with the theme for this year. It reminds me to be courageous and step outside my comfort zone to chase my goals. It is never the path of least resistance to identify an issue you see in your life or workplace or to say yes to an opportunity that hasn’t historically been in your wheelhouse. They are however almost always the decisions you feel the most personal satisfaction from in the end, success or failure. This years theme reminds me that there is a community of men and women doing the same thing and it gives me confidence. What drew you into the industry? The community surrounding independent breweries drew me in initially. There was a small brewpub my parents used to take us to growing up that piqued my interest in craft beer. So when I moved from Canada to Brisbane I sought out a role relating to independent beer so I could join the community. Where did you start? I started my career in Canada as a Purchasing Manager for a golf wholesale company called G&G. When I moved to Australia in 2015 to travel for a year I sought out a position in hospitality working in independent beer to get to know like-minded people. I remember searching “craft beer in Brisbane” and an article listing Tipler’s Tap, The Scratch, Archive and two others coming up and I applied to all. I managed to get a position at Tippler’s Tap on Masters St. and got to know Mark Howes from Newstead a little bit through that. I eventually found myself working as 2IC at Doggett St. and eventually moving into Inventory and Production Management there. I started as Operations Manager at Ballistic in 2020 and have been enjoying that ever since. Are there any women you want to acknowledge for their support? I would be silly not to acknowledge my mum, who was a leader in her industry and always challenged the status quo. My parents have always supported whatever I’ve chased which means a great deal. I’ve met so many incredible women in this industry that to list them all would take up too much space, but I would like to tip my hat to all the women in beer that I’ve had the pleasure to meet and have yet to meet as I’m always in awe. A few individuals I have had the pleasure to work a bit closer with that I would like to recognise are Jim Gold, Erin Keaveny, Bec King, Jess Hundley, Michael Capaldo, Sim Bonetti, Tom Champion and Jared Palu. These people in different ways have impacted my career in this industry and I’m very grateful. Tell us about Pink boots? Pink Boots was created and exists to empower and support women beer professionals to advance their careers in the Beer Industry through community and education. It’s a spectacular community of people who are incredible at what they do and volunteer their time to chart paths to any aspect of the industry you could want. They offer scholarships for development, run networking events for members of the group in all states, and provide a forum where women and come together and discuss challenges and successes in their careers. Highly recommend jumping on Facebook or the web and visiting Pink Boots Australia and getting involved. Victoria - Quality Control & Beer Scientist What is your current role? I am the quality scientist at Ballistic, I make sure our beer is in spec and tasting good. What does IWD mean to you? IWD to me is celebrating women both in industry and life and acknowledging our achievements, a day to raise awareness about the boulders we move on a daily basis and usually stay quiet about. What does the 2021 IWD "choose to challenge" theme this year mean to you? The “choose to challenge” theme is an awesome way to empower women to speak up and be proud of themselves, this is especially important in the craft beer industry which is still such a male-dominated industry. What drew you into the industry? My love of craft beer and general interest in getting to know more about it. A generally laid back industry that is very serious about beer, it’s basically me in a nutshell so it seemed like a perfect fit. Where did you start? I have been educating the general public about craft beer through tastings and beer festivals since 2013 in my spare time while I put myself through school. Inspiring and educating consumers to try something new and getting the product into their hands is one of my greatest passions. Towards the end of my studies, I decided to dive further into the industry and learn how to brew beer at Soapbox Beer. Before then, I never realised how much science was involved in the brewing process and from there I fell in love. Now, I am able to combine my two passions, science and beer, into a full-time position and I’ve never been happier. Are there any women you want to acknowledge for their support? It’s hard to pick just one, I’d generally like to acknowledge all women in my life for always inspiring me to be my best self, to push harder and to be whatever it is I want to be. Tell us about Pink boots? Pink Boots is an awesome group of women who come together for the love of beer to celebrate women in the beer industry. I am new to the community this year and went to my first event on IWD, which was incredibly inspiring to meet other women with the same passion for craft beer as me. I look forward to forming life long relationships and learning everything I can from this inspirational group of women.
International Women's Day and Pink Boots
16 March 2021