Shannon Cogan's Five Questions with Old Forester President Campbell Brown

Published: May. 12, 2016 at 8:19 PM EDT|Updated: May. 13, 2016 at 8:00 AM EDT
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Campbell Brown (Source: Brown-Forman)
Campbell Brown (Source: Brown-Forman)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Now that the Kentucky Derby is over, this week instead of asking questions about horse racing, it's on to another Kentucky favorite; Bourbon.

Old Forester is the longest-running bourbon on the market today. The Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey is produced by the Brown-Forman Corporation, and has been around for 145 years.

Campbell Brown was named president of the company in March 2015. For the record, he prefers drinking Old Forester on the rocks with family and friends he says, preferably in someone's backyard.

Here now are my five questions with Campbell Brown.

1) The Old Forester Mint Julep is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby. Any clue how many Old Forester bottles they went through at Kentucky Derby 142?
Last year, we sold over 120,000 mint juleps. I've not heard what we sold this year, but I imagine it is in that range. I certainly saw a lot of smiling faces holding Old Forester Mint Juleps tightly in their hands.

2) How are things moving on your new distillery? When will it be finished?
Much like the bourbon-aging process, it's slow and steady. We are happy with the progress we've made and we are still planning to be up and running by the end of 2017.

3) How will the new distillery change things for your brand?
Above and beyond being able to add capacity to our production process, we will have a wonderful and very unique bourbon experience that draws back the curtain on a 144-year-old history that has deep ties to the city of Louisville.

4) You are a Brown family member. How do you fit into the line of Browns and the founder?
George Garvin Brown was my great, great grandfather, making me a fifth-generation descendant of our company's founder.

5) Did you always know you would work in the family business?
It was never guaranteed that I would work here. My first job at Brown-Forman was in the late 1980s as a summer intern in our mail room. I've now worked here for a little over 20 years. Leading our founding brand, Old Forester, has been a privilege. I am grateful to be a part of a business that was started by a great grandfather over 140 years ago.

Previous Installments:
April 15: Milliner Kenzie Kapp
April 8: The owner of MexA Steak Tacos
March 31: The owners of Louisville's Drybar
+ March 25: Local entrepreneur Junior Bridgeman
+ March 18: Author Emily Bingham
March 11: PurseKeyper co-rounder Dana Robinson
March 4: Chef, restaurateur John Varanese
Feb. 26: Wicked Sheets Founder Alli Truttmann
Feb. 19: Lilly's Chef Kathy Cary
Feb. 12: Speed Museum Director Ghislain d'Humieres
Feb. 5: Miss Kentucky USA Kyle Hornback

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