News Ray Daniels Sells Cicerone Program to Two Industry Veterans

Founder Ray Daniels announced today that he has sold the Cicerone Certification Program to two Master Cicerones with deep experience in the beer industry. Dan Imdieke and Jason Pratt will take over the sixteen-year-old program which will continue to be based in Chicago

“For several years now, I have been looking for a suitable group to take over ownership of the Cicerone Certification Program,” said program founder Ray Daniels. “These two Master Cicerones are well known to me and to the program as the result of having worked with us in a number of capacities over the years. Based on their experience both in the industry and with Cicerone, I feel very confident entrusting the future of the program to them.”

Daniels launched the Cicerone Certification Program in January 2008.   Its mission has been to improve the quality of beer service for consumers by educating and certifying beer professionals. The program’s offerings include online exams, training programs, and other remote learning resources in seven languages. When circumstances permit, they also conduct in-person, interactive classes that prepare participants for exams. To date, more than 150,000 individuals worldwide have completed at least one level of certification in the program.

Jason Pratt’s career in beer spans 17+ years across the technical and commercial sides of the industry.  He started as a yeast and fermentation scientist for MolsonCoors and then transitioned to leading the company’s beer education efforts where he saw the impact of beer knowledge on all 3 tiers of the beer industry.  Jason then transitioned to the marketing team where he was Director of Beverage Innovation for North America and developed several successful brands that launched domestically and internationally. Following his career at MolsonCoors, he worked for an alcohol e-commerce startup as the Chief Partnership Officer.

Dan Imdieke began his career with 9 years at Yard House, where he managed bar operations and training at the national level and opened 20 new restaurant locations.  He was also the corporate beer buyer for Old Chicago Pizza and Tap Room, On his journey to Master Cicerone, he then led the beer education team at MolsonCoors after Pratt, where he conducted training sessions with some of the largest beer retailers and distributors in the U.S.  Dan was also Director of Operations at the Blue Moon Brewery in Denver where he led a team of 100 employees, hosted beer events for media and key retailers, and contributed to the R&D pipeline for new national brands.

See the full press release here.

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