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Fermly Blog

  • Writer's pictureFrances Tietje-Wang

Woman Crush Wednesday: Janelle Buxton

Janelle Buxton between her peers at a Pink Boots collaboration brew day

Janelle Buxton, a native of southwest Iowa, embarked on a journey of personal and professional growth that led her from the fields of agricultural communications to the bustling world of craft beer. Armed with an undergraduate degree from Iowa State University, Buxton made the bold decision to pursue an MBA at Colorado State University, driven by a desire to broaden her horizons and delve into the realm of business.

Despite entering business school with no prior accounting experience, Buxton embraced the challenge, recognizing the value of higher education in expanding her skill set and confidence. She emphasized the importance of mentorship and exposure to diverse perspectives in shaping her business acumen and leadership abilities. For her, the MBA wasn't just about practical knowledge; it was about gaining the confidence to claim her seat at the table during discussions on profit and loss and leadership strategies.

Janelle Buxton being interviewed during a collaboration brew day

Buxton's career trajectory took an unexpected turn when a visit to Odell Brewing Company sparked her fascination with the craft beer industry. Inspired by the culture and authenticity of craft brewing, she made a leap of faith, leaving behind a corporate job to immerse herself in the world of craft beer. From working in a farm-to-table restaurant to assisting the Craft Maltsters Guild and eventually landing a role at New Belgium Brewing, she has embraced every opportunity to learn and contribute to the craft beer community.

Driven by a passion for connectivity and community, Buxton has been a vocal advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion in the craft beer industry. She played a pivotal role in revitalizing the Pink Boots Society chapter in Iowa, empowering women and non-binary individuals in the brewing industry. Recognizing the importance of representation and inclusivity, she has championed initiatives to create welcoming spaces for underrepresented groups in craft beer.

Buxton's commitment to environmental sustainability and social responsibility is evident in her work with Big Grove Brewery, where she spearheaded initiatives focused on supporting local communities and reducing environmental impact. She has now moved on to a position as Vice President of Marketing and Development with Red Boot Beverage, where she will continue to strive to make a positive difference and foster a culture of giving back within the craft beer community.

With a career marked by resilience, advocacy, and a relentless pursuit of excellence, Janelle Buxton continues to break barriers and inspire others to follow their passions, challenge conventions, and make a meaningful impact in their communities.



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