About Us

All 3 Tiers

3 Tier Beverages had been an idea of ours for several years as a way to provide sales and marketing direction to companies taking their first steps or needing assistance navigating the path they are already traveling. 3 is more than just the number of businesses in the alcohol distribution system; supplier, distributor and retailer. 3 is the number of steps we will take to provide solutions, step one is to understand, step two is to strategize together and step 3 is to implement.

Supplier

Manufacturer of the product,
but can include importers.

Distributors

The middle of the process and the only time a supplier sells a product.

Retailers

Independent or chain, On or Off premise, the final touch to the consumer.

Our founder

My career in the beverage industry started out on the retail side working at bars and restaurants in Chicago until my first supplier job with SAB selling Pilsner Urquell previous to their acquisition of Miller Brewing Company. Opportunity to build out a new sales team at Goose Island led me there during their transition from an externally led sales and marketing organization to recreation of an internal team. My next move was to Heineken/USA as a part of the Star Brand Imports team managing distributors along with developing and implementing the annual business plans across the Midwest. When Heineken made the decision to close our import division it led me back to craft beer and to Dogfish Head where the middle of America became my home managing their distributor side of the business along with On Premise National accounts. My final stop before beginning this next step was at Revolution Brewing back home in Chicago for the last eight years building out their sales, marketing and logistics side of the business from case zero. 3 Tier Beverages is based out of the Logan Square neighborhood in Chicago where it shares office space with a wife, two daughters and a 100lb Chocolate Labrador who thinks he is a lap dog. 3 decades of genuine, authentic and real experience in the beverage industry working for you.

Donn Bichsel, CEO
1

Our Co-founder

A self-described data nerd – I started my career over a decade ago at PepsiCo working a variety of roles across finance and sales strategy for Gatorade and Tropicana (Chicago, IL). With data analysis being front and center, I developed P&Ls for new innovation launches, created volume forecasts, helped develop ABPs, and projected share movement of Tropicana vs its primary competitor Simply Orange using retail scan data.

Later, I would make the difficult decision to leave PepsiCo to accept an opportunity to work at Revolution Brewing in Chicago as the “data director”, where I met Donn Bichsel Jr. (who later became co-founder of 3 Tier

Beverages). At Revolution, I worked with the sales team to develop best in class internal reporting, retailer presentations, and played a center role in creating the brewery’s annual business plan.

In 2020 Donn and I started 3 Tier Beverages with a roster of 5 clients, and in three years now support over 150 beer, wine, and spirits suppliers and distributors with recurring and customized sales data reporting in partnership with VIP and NIQ.

When I am not crunching numbers, I enjoy spending time with my son Arthur, wife Rosy, and my old grumpy dog Albus.

Joe Sepka, Co-Founder
16

Chief Operating Officer

Originally from the Chicagoland area, I’ve had a fantastic career in the beverage industry, moving across the country from St. Louis, to Los Angeles, New York City and finally home to Chicago. I’ve had the privilege of working for some of the world’s most innovative and analytically sophisticated Brewers (e.g., MillerCoors, Heineken, Anheuser-Busch) and their distributor networks. This combined with my experience growing small beer and wine brands within competitive metro markets helped me build a powerful analytics, strategy and marketing toolkit.  

Most recently, I served as Chief Growth Officer for a large multinational packaging production and design agency.  I led through a philosophy of winning via a commitment to simplicity and a relentless focus on the fundamentals. I’m excited to bring my collective experiences to the mission of growing the 3-Tier team and service offerings and supporting our regional and local beverage clients in their maturation journey. 

On a personal note, I’m excited to reunite with Donn, Mary, Danelle and Danny, each of whom I’ve had the pleasure of working with in a prior role. The speed of innovation in total beverage makes this journey exciting, unpredictable and fun and we get to work with great data partners and the best clients in world!    


 

Turiya Luzadder, COO

Danny Brager

consultant

I was born in Calgary and moved to Toronto where I graduated from the Schulich School of Business at York University. Once a graduate, I  relocated to Mission Viejo, California in 1993 where I reside today.

I have a wealth of experience in the Beverage Alcohol industry, analyzing trends over many years. I formerly headed the Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Practice Area in the U.S, where I led teams that supported relationships with Nielsen’s clients (suppliers, importers, distributors, and retailers) as well as key industry groups and the media. In that role, I succinctly provided data driven analysis and insights, focused on the U.S. marketplace environment and consumer/shopper.

I regularly provide analysis services to companies seeking to translate market data into fact-based insights in support of their goals.  Each year, I present at a large number of notable industry and company events, and am a frequent thought leader contributor to the media/press. My informed opinions are highly respected by the beverage alcohol industry.

2

Danelle Kosmal

Consultant

I most recently served as the Vice President of Research at the Beer Institute in Washington, D.C. With a strong background in leadership, project management, data analysis, and marketing analytics, I have shaped industry strategies and driven impactful research initiatives. In my previous role at NielsenIQ, I led the Beverage Alcohol Practice, focusing on thought leadership and industry insights across beer, wine, and spirits. My previous roles at NIQ included managing major accounts like MillerCoors, Heinz and Kellogg.

I am passionate about the beverage industry and my ability to drive data-informed strategies shaping the industry’s future with my expertise and insights.

Mary Mills

consultant

I come from NielsenIQ, where I spent 14 years across client management, business development, and innovation insights. I have experience working with various clients in the food, beverage, and consumer goods industries, with 9 years focused on alcohol specifically.

I hold a Marketing degree from The Ohio State University and am an avid Buckeye fan. I reside in Columbus, Ohio and live with my husband Andy and our two children, Luke (4 years old) and Ava (2 years old).

Jackson Kirk

Consultant

Coming out of college I joined a South Jersey Vodka Distillery working in sales and everything day-to-day. Once Covid hit, I took a position in small E-Commerce store, and from there I landed in the start-up world focusing on Project Management. It was in that position I learned how pivotal data was in the overall success of an organization allowing for major insights into where to deploy focus. Looking to move to a more analytical role, I stumbled upon 3 Tier Beverages thinking it would be a great fit for what I was looking for.

I am a Stockton University graduate, holding a degree in Computer Science. For several years I was an ocean lifeguard on the beaches of South Jersey where I competed in athletic competitions. I am big on sports (especially fantasy football), the gym, a little bit of a chess nerd, and love the summer. Excited to join the 3 Tier Team!

13

Stephanie Roatis

Consultant

I started out my career at IRI in their Strategic Analytics team, where I was running pricing & promotion analysis, assortment optimization, and marketing mix analysis for national CPG brands. I slowly gravitated towards the Bev-Alc space as I became fascinated with the depth of BWS data. During the pandemic, I documented thought leadership regarding the effects of COVID-19 on the already-complex retail landscape, particularly with our BWS clients.

After several years at IRI, I realized I missed working on a smaller team and the more personal client relationships that stem from one. I had worked in the service industry for almost a decade, most recently at Commonwealth Tavern in Chicago, where I convinced patrons to buy beers from breweries that I wished I was representing. This past January, I joined 3 Tier Beverages. I’m proud to be a part of this team and leverage our skill set to help clients compete and win shelf (and bar) space. I get to be both data-obsessed and people-forward.

I’m a UVA grad (Go Hoos!), Chicago native who recently moved to Dallas. I love hiking, mountain biking, going to concerts, and volunteering at sporting events. Cheers

Tim Oldread

Consultant

I grew up in Massachusetts and yet I’m a Yankees and Giants fan.  I studied Wildlife and Fisheries Science at Penn State and I somehow most recently worked at Highland Brewing Company in Asheville, North Carolina.  And my pre-Beverage Alcohol career was in informal science education at SeaWorld Orlando, Mote Marine Laboratory (Sarasota, Florida), and Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World.  

It’s been an interesting and circuitous route landing at 3 Tier Beverages.  While working in Bev-Alc retail for two years after Disney, I fell in love with the craft beer industry.  Starting at Highland as the Florida Field Sales Rep, my wife and I moved up to Asheville after about four years, where I covered Upstate South Carolina.  I then led a team that covered FL, SC, and central NC until I moved into Business Development.  

I am passionate about using data to help make informed business decisions across the three-tier system.  I have experience providing market insight for chain presentations and distributor Annual Business Plans.  I have worked across all brewery departments – helping plan production, implement portfolio changes, and allocate limited releases.  And I have overseen pricing, promotion, freight, and margin to maximize profit.

I love my wife – Erin, our two dogs – Raven and Mozzarella, and College GameDay. 

Peyton Hammon

Business & Communications Coordinator

My first position was in Business Development at Candor Health Education; a non profit located in the west suburbs of Chicago that provides student health and wellness programming. I was able to learn how to work efficiently within a CRM and collaborate with Academic Professionals to implement health education for Chicagoland students. I now have found myself in Business Development at 3 Tier and have been eagerly working to maintain team workflow, streamline communications, and track revenue. As our Administrative Specialist/Business Administrator, I am experienced in various fields. This includes social media management, writing newsletters and client contracts, organizing webinars/events and utilizing CRM tools to streamline project coordination. Additionally, I assist in managing billing processes, payroll, healthcare/insurance, and 401K contributions. Throughout my journey, I have learned the importance of effective communication, adaptability, and caring for the well-being of employees. I strive to create seamless operations and to bring my best to every task I undertake.

Michael Wilson

Analyst

As a Northern Illinois University graduate with a degree focused in Data Analytics, I am a data focused individual. As well as data analytics, I’ve studied data visualization, database structure management, and quality & process improvement. After growing these skills both academically and personally, I’m excited to finally use these skills professionally with the great people at 3Tier.

Ever since my first tour at Budweiser’s Brewery in St. Louis, my interest in the process behind the drink was rooted. Having the ability to now work behind the scenes helping pull insights and build stories for the people in this industry is an amazing opportunity I never thought I would have.

When not working, I love to spend as much time with my friends and family that I can. Whether it is playing a board game, seeing a live concert, or just meeting to have a nice drink, sharing good experiences with good people is always going to be important.

Kim Kulig

Database Specialist

I have been a professional data wrangler for over 25 years. With roles in data operations, custom and syndicated data solutions, and data related services, I thrive on solving challenges with data transformation, storage, reporting, and delivery.  

Over my years working for Perishables Group as Data Services Manager, Director, and Specialist, the end-to-end data pipeline was in my command from raw collection to our client- facing web application.  

Perishables Group was acquired by Nielsen, where post-transition I transferred to Nielsen Statistical Operations team, developing project-specific database automation to support market definition analysis, quality control and delivery utilities in a SQL server environment.

I am a self-taught SQL developer, category analyst, DBA, and Excel guru with natural aptitude for spotting potholes in the road ahead, the trap door out of the maze, and the story in the data. I grew up in the south subs of Chicago. I’ve lived in Austin and in Portland where I came to appreciate how a local vibe can make or break a brand. My partner and I now call northwest Indiana home with our four rescued dogs and three “not my cat” cats.     

I look forward to supporting the growing success of 3Tier Beverages! 

Susan Wozniak

Consultant

I grew up on a ranch in Colorado and believe in the sense of community that was installed in me from that experience. I love that in this industry, community and relationships are still pivotal and special.

My career in the beer business started in Norfolk, Virginia where I worked for 10 years running a local restaurant. I joined Devils Backbone Brewing Company in 2015 in a sales role. Following the brewery’s acquisition from Anheuser-Busch, I worked in Analytics and Planning with the senior leadership team at Devils Backbone. In the role as Director of Performance, I was accountable for helping set, track and analyze commercial performance and initiatives with a focus on profitability and sustainable growth. We used a variety of data sources in tracking where we had strengths and determining the path we wanted to take moving forward.

In 2021, I transitioned to Kona Brewing Company & Omission Balanced Brewing in a similar role. My focus was in leading our team through integration and planning with the supply and finance teams at Anheuser-Busch. In this role I helped to leverage data to create a growth strategy that was optimal for supply, finance and sales. My strength is in working cross-functionally and anticipating challenges so that we can plan accordingly.

I love storytelling and have been lucky enough to build a career where a good story was the center of most of my work. I am excited to be working with 3 Tier Beverages and our clients to continue to leverage our data sources and grow.

I’m fortunate to live at the beach in Delaware with my husband, Andrew and our daughter, June.

Linda Zunas

consultant

I started my career at Pets.com in the peak of the original dot com boom. After the subsequent bust, I joined Nielsen where I spent 9 years in client management and then custom analytics consulting. I worked with Food and Bev-Al clients from small to global.  I left Nielsen to join Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits where I spent another 9 years managing their syndicated data and custom analytics projects. 

As part of the Great Resignation in 2020, I left Deutsch to start my consulting career and to spend more time with family. I now consult for a variety of Wine and Spirits clients, focusing both on helping smaller brands with their data and insights needs, and on helping larger suppliers with managing their custom analytics projects.

I got my passion for wine from my grandparents who had me managing their wine cellar spreadsheet before I was a teenager, but I was born with my passion for data and analysis. My degree is in Civil Engineering from UC Davis.

I am an avid world traveler, having been to all seven continents. When not working or traveling, I love spending time with my rescue greyhound Opus, cheering on my SF Giants, and hiking in Lake Tahoe.

 

Julia Lechleiter

Consultant

I started out my career at 84.51 on their Insights team where I supported emerging CPG brands in leveraging Kroger household data to guide customer-focused assortment, promotion, innovation and digital strategies.

I then moved into a role supporting national CPG brands, primarily in the beverage space, to run more complex analyses and develop automated dashboards.

After supporting clients on numerous new item presentations and being exposed to the power of BASES innovation research, I joined NIQ on the BASES BevAl team. While I learned to love the BevAl industry, I missed working in a data platform to support clients run various analyses, specifically those related to retailer relations which led me to 3 Tier.

I graduated from Miami University with a degree in Marketing, and live in Cincinnati, Ohio with my husband (also a Miami grad, so we are mergers!). We have an 8-month old son, John, and two cocker spaniels, Bailey and Phil.

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