Columbia Distributing’s Inclusion Council

Studies show that more and more American workers value a workplace that makes meaningful efforts toward greater diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). According to a report from Pew Research Center, 56% of employed adults in the United States believe increasing DEI in work environments is beneficial.

At Columbia Distributing, we’ve always been dedicated to the communities we serve throughout Washington and Oregon. We recognize that answering the call of more DEI requires real effort. In response, we’ve created the Inclusion Council to highlight our diverse workforce, ensure all teammates have a voice, and guide the company in following sustainable, strategic DEI practices. Learn more about the council and our commitment to DEI.

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Inclusion Council Member: Delivery Director Dusty Auxier

Dusty Auxier

Since its founding in 1935, Columbia Distributing has been committed to providing clients throughout Oregon and Washington with some of the leading brands in the beverage business. The company has been through a lot of changes. In 2008, Columbia Distributing, Mt. Hood Beverage, and Gold River Distributing merged to form Columbia Distributing as it stands today. In 2018, the company acquired General Distributors, Inc., and Marine View Beverage. With an extensive selection of domestic and craft beer, wine, spirits, and non-alcoholic beverages, Columbia Distributing is the go-to choice for businesses throughout the Pacific Northwest.

One employee who has been steadfast through all these changes is Dusty Auxier. As the delivery director for Columbia Distributing’s site in Canby, Oregon, Auxier has been with the company for 28 years. Here, Auxier shares his perspective on the organizational culture at Columbia Distributing and why he enjoys his role.

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Inclusion Council Member: Sales Director Seth Paterson

Seth Paterson and wife

Seth Paterson appreciates that teamwork is valued at Columbia Distributing. It takes a group effort to coordinate all the detailed logistics of delivering cold beverages to clients all over our service area in Oregon and Washington. Paterson has been with the Columbia Distributing team for 25 years! He currently works as the sales director for Columbia Distributing’s location in Vancouver, Washington. Here, he shares insights into his leadership role and what it’s like to work for a leading beverage distributor.

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Inclusion Council Member: Senior Vice President of Human Resources Michelle Rose

Michelle Rose

It’s a team effort to supply retailers across the Pacific Northwest with refreshing beverages from the top brands in the industry. At Columbia Distributing, we couldn’t do the work we do without our amazing employees – and no one knows that better than Michelle Rose. As senior vice president of human resources, Rose is responsible for overseeing the HR teams in Kent, Washington, and Wilsonville, Oregon. Here, Rose highlights some of the programs and initiatives that make Columbia Distributing a great place to work.

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Inclusion Council Member: Sarah Meisner, Merchandiser

Sarah Meisner

At Columbia Distributing, we pride ourselves on being a reliable source of the best non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages around. We couldn’t do the work we do without our merchandisers, who stock products at all our retail partners.

Today, we’re highlighting Sarah Meisner, one of the members of our merchandising team. Meisner has worked as a merchandiser at Columbia Distributing since August 2021. Here, she shares a few insights into the employee culture at Columbia Distributing and why it’s a great place to work.

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What Is Dark Lager? Exploring This Unique Style of Beer

Glass of dark lager beer with foam on table

Whether you’re an avid beer drinker or not, chances are when you see a big glass of dark brown beer, you probably think it’s a porter or a stout. However, it could be another dark brown beer, called dark lager, that offers the same bold look as other dark beers but with a unique flair. Columbia Distributing is a beverage retailer providing bars and restaurants in Washington and Oregon with the beverages their customers want, including dark lagers. Here, we’ll share more about this unique style of beer and its history.

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How Is Fresh Hop Beer Different than Regular Beer

Close-up of a green hop plant cone on a bush

Any beer drinker has heard of hops, but you may not know exactly how they play a role in the brewing of your favorite beers. Hops are green cone-shaped flowers of the Humulus lupulus plant that are used in the brewing process to create bitterness, aroma, and flavor. Depending on when they’re harvested and used, different types of beer like fresh hop and dry hop can be created. Columbia Distributing is a beverage distributor serving Washington and Oregon with reliable services and more than 90 years of experience in the industry. Here, we share more information about fresh hop beer and how it differs from traditional beer.

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Not All Hops Are the Same

Fresh hops ready for beer being held in farmer’s hands

What are hops in beer? The flowers of the Humulus lupulus plant, hops are a staple in nearly every beer recipe known to humankind. The earliest brewers began using the ingredient to balance out the sweetness of barley, wheat, or oat-based beers. Today, hops are regarded as the basis of the modern craft beer movement, which began in the 1960s and 70s and exploded in the 2010s and 20s.

Hops are grown in regions with mild climates, nutrient-rich soil, regular precipitation, and lots of sunshine. They come from all over the world, so the flavor, aroma, and bitterness of each type can vary greatly. Here, Columbia Distributing, a trusted distributor of non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages in Oregon and Washington, discusses the different types of beer hops and how they affect taste.

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Inclusion Council Member: Douglas Bailey, Vice President of Optimization

As communities become more diverse across the United States, efforts to create more inclusive and equitable workplaces have been a major point of discussion in the business world. For Columbia Distributing, inclusivity isn’t just a sentiment but a core component of our vision and values, and team members at all locations and across all levels work toward it every day.

One team member with a passion for fostering a more inclusive culture at Columbia Distributing is the Vice President of Optimization, Douglas Bailey. Learn about what his role entails and his thoughts about the progress of the company with inclusivity, as well as what work still needs to be done.

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Understanding What IBU and ABV Mean When It Comes to Beer

Blue beer cans in red cooler on ice

Consumers have several common questions when it comes to alcoholic beverages: What is IBU in beer, and what does ABV mean? International bitterness units (IBUs) and alcohol by volume (ABV) are two types of measurements commonly used to classify beers. IBUs and ABV are important to know, as they can help consumers determine what to expect from the beer’s flavor, mouthfeel, and potency.

Here, Columbia Distributing, which serves businesses in Oregon and Washington as a premier beverage distributor, explains the difference between IBU and ABV.

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