Iowa STATEment Makers is a recognition program of the Iowa State University Alumni Association’s Young Alumni Council, honoring graduates of the past 10 years who have made strong statements in careers, entrepreneurial endeavors, academics, community service, or personal achievements. There are 17 honorees for 2014, and we’re introducing each of them to you here on the blog.
In 2010, Garrett (’03 community and regional planning, MS ’05) and his brother – a fellow ISU alum – took a chance on a dream and started Mississippi River Distilling Company to create home grown, handmade spirits in the Quad Cities. As evidenced by his use of local growers and farmers to help manufacture the product, Garrett is a firm believer in the family farm and in the stewardship of land and water resources. The Burchett brothers are known for emphasizing quality over quantity when making premium vodka, gin, and whiskey using a handcrafted German still. Thanks to the company’s commitment to quality, Mississippi River Distilling received the “Renew Rural Iowa” award from the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation. Its products can now be found on many store shelves in Iowa and beyond, making the company an Iowa success story after only a few short years in operation.
…his favorite ISU tradition: “football tailgates”
….what would make the world a better place: “if there were more Cyclones in it!”
…the movie he’s always quoting: “The Big Lebowski”
…what’s next for him: “Continuing to build a solid business here in Iowa. We plan to expand the reaches of the Mississippi River Distilling Company to include distribution in over 30 states.”