2022 Program Recognition

STEPUP is so humbled in our inaugural year, to have the honor of partnering with the most qualified, talented, and dedicated participants. 

Meet our 2022 Interns, Mentors, and DSPs!

2022 Participating Interns

Erin Lee

2022 Intern

Erin Lee Homeyer will be joining us by way of Canada and most recently, Brooklyn, NY where she has a career background in the fashion industry. Her most recent endeavors have expanded her skills in tasting by becoming a Certified TAC Tea Sommelier through the Academy of Tea and Tea and Herbal Association of Canada. She is thrilled to embark on this new journey that will help to hone and pair her skilled palette with her passion for craft spirits!

Yakntoro “Yaki” Udoumoh

2022 Intern

Yakntoro “Yaki” Udoumoh hails from Maryland just outside of the Washington D.C. area and is currently putting his Techniques of Alcohol Management (TAM) Certification from the Maryland Bartending School to great use, as a Bartender at the Colombia Room. His career in hospitality has led him to the doorsteps of the craft spirits industry, having had previous Internships with Craft Distillers. STEPUP is excited to see how this Howard University Alum will use his creative and ambitious outlook on building community to bust the craft spirits industry-wide open!

Yakntoro “Yaki” Udoumoh

2022 Intern

Yakntoro “Yaki” Udoumoh hails from Maryland just outside of the Washington D.C. area and is currently putting his Techniques of Alcohol Management (TAM) Certification from the Maryland Bartending School to great use, as a Bartender at the Colombia Room. His career in hospitality has led him to the doorsteps of the craft spirits industry, having had previous Internships with Craft Distillers. STEPUP is excited to see how this Howard University Alum will use his creative and ambitious outlook on building community to bust the craft spirits industry-wide open!

Erin Lee

2022 Intern

Erin Lee Homeyer will be joining us by way of Canada and most recently, Brooklyn, NY where she has a career background in the fashion industry. Her most recent endeavors have expanded her skills in tasting by becoming a Certified TAC Tea Sommelier through the Academy of Tea and Tea and Herbal Association of Canada. She is thrilled to embark on this new journey that will help to hone and pair her skilled palette with her passion for craft spirits!

2022 Participating Distilleries

Westward Whiskey 

“Single Malt Reimagined. American Whiskey Elevated.”™
2022 Participating Distillery

Portland, Oregon

For nearly two decades, Westward has brought something new, different, and relevant to whiskey by reimagining what Single Malt can be, brewing it like a pale ale, distilling it like a traditional Single Malt, and aging it like a bourbon. The result is a robust spirit — the pinnacle of American whiskey. 
Westward is a whiskey of the elements, born from the unique culture, climate, and abundant resources of the American Northwest, where our relentless pursuit of perfection creates bold award-winning whiskeys.

Eight Oaks Farm Distillery

“We don’t just make whiskey, we make a difference.”™
2022 Participating Distillery

New Tripoli, Pennsylvania

Eight Oaks Farm Distillery is veteran-owned and family-run. We are located in the rolling farmlands of the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania. We grow all our own grains, including corn, wheat, rye, and barley to craft a wide range of award-winning spirits, like Bourbon, Rye Whiskey, Vodka, and Gin. 

We source other ingredients to create unique spirits such as Applejack, Rum, and Ocho Robles—our version of a traditional tequila.

We practice our craft from the roots up, with love. We proudly grow our grains right here on our farm and the farms of our neighbors. We support the growth of local jobs by welcoming our crew into our family and providing them a career where they can learn and grow. We work closely with our nonprofit partners, giving more than just money; we give them our attention, our time, and our hearts. The result? Unique farm-to-bottle spirits with rich, Pennsylvania roots that run deep.

It was in this soil that we found our name. A symbol of strength, nature, and longevity, the oak tree provides the barrels that distillers have been using for centuries to age their spirits. At Eight Oaks strive to honor that legacy in everything we do.

Cascade Hollow Distilling Co. 

“ESTD. 1870. Home of George Dickel Tennessee Whisky.”
2022 Participating Distillery

Tullahoma, Tennessee

Born 40 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, George A. Dickel was an established Nashville merchant when he entered the whisky business. Dickel grew his reputation for selling the smoothest, most mellow spirits in the region. 

Thus, Geo. A. Dickel & Co. was born and when the Cascade Hollow Distillery opened in 1878 in neighboring Coffee County, George Dickel bought a large share. George Dickel followed in the Scottish tradition of spelling whisky without an “e.”

George Dickel preferred whisky made in the winter months more than summer months because he felt it made the whisky taste smoother, so the company began advertising their Geo. A. Dickel’s Cascade Tennessee Whisky as “Mellow as Moonlight.” This is why our whisky is chilled before undergoing the charcoal-mellow filtration known as the Lincoln County Process. This extra step smooths out the flavor and we’re still the only Tennessee distillery to do it.

By 1904, under Augusta Dickel and business partner Victor Schwab, the distillery had prospered. Although Prohibition became federal law in 1919, it was enacted in Tennessee nine years earlier. The distillery was closed, but the then-named Cascade Whisky was allowed to be sold as a medicinal spirit through leased equipment at the Stitzel distillery in Kentucky.

Twenty-five years after the Repeal of Prohibition, in 1958, a new distillery was opened down the road from the original Cascade Hollow Distillery and it began producing whisky known as Geo. A. Dickel Tennessee Whisky. In 1964, the whisky was bottled and released as Dickel Black Label Old No. 8 and Dickel Tan Label Superior No. 12. Today, our Distiller carries on the tradition of excellence that has made our brand a symbol of quality for over 130 years.

2022 Photo Gallery

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