Briess Technical Team

Meet the Briess Team

The Briess Technical Team includes food scientists, microbiologists, malting and brewing experts and sensory specialists supported by a skilled, dedicated staff of specialists, operators and technicians. Briess staff are educated in some of the most respected institutions in America, and maintain memberships, certifications and training through the largest professional groups in the beer and food industries.

Ryan O'Toole, President/COO
Joined Briess November 2015
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, FL
Profile: Ryan began his career with Kerry Ingredients 18+ years ago, preforming various roles throughout the company and country. He has a broad background and robust knowledge of the food and ingredients industries. Starting at Kerry as a Quality Assurance Technician and Production Supervisor, he became fluent in the production processes of food manufacturing. As he continued his career, his roles included Quality Assurance Manager, Technical Manager, Operations Director, and finally Vice President of Operations. His focus throughout these roles included ensuring facility adherence to budget, capital expenditures, customer service, quality and safety.

Shawn Kohlmeier, Product Line Manager—Food Division
Joined Briess May 2012
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree with a double major in Business Administration and Business/Economic Comprehensive from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville
Profile: Prior to joining Briess, Shawn worked at Red Arrow Products, a manufacture of natural ingredients for the prepared meats industry, in its marketing department. His career has been focused on customer intimate sales and marketing and product management. His technical knowledge and understanding of the food industry gives him the ability to communicate effectively with stakeholders across Briess from the supply chain, to the farmer, to the consumer. He is passionate about promoting a product line that focuses on solutions while meeting the needs of an ever changing consumer group.

Bob Hansen, Technical Services Manager
Joined Briess May 2001
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree with a double major in Biochemistry and Applied Math and Physics from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Attended Siebel Institute courses
Profile: Prior to joining Briess, Bob was a brewing consultant, and brewer and consultant for Water Street Brewery, Milwaukee. At Briess, Bob commisioned a 500bbl brewhouse in the new Briess Extract Plant, and established a new pilot brewery. In addition to extensive R&D, Bob also provides technical support and recipe formulation assistance to customers. Frequent presenter to brewing and food industry groups.

Martin McKinney, Division Manager—Food East
Joined Briess October 2016

Dayton Daberkow, Division Manager—Food North
Joined Briess March 2016
Education: Bachelor of Arts Degree with a double major in Business Administration and Interpersonal Communication from Concordia University, in Seward, NE
Profile: Dayton brings 7 years of experience in the protein market from his time serving with Solbar and then CHS through acquisition. Dayton’s work before Briess included numerous projects to enhance the sales cycle and provide structure to a burgeoning international protein supplier. His time in the protein market offered a unique cross-section to the food industry and afforded him the opportunity to develop a broad and diverse set of relationships. He enjoys the consultative process of selling food ingredients and the never-ending opportunity to learn from co-workers and customers.

Dona Leonard, Division Manager—Food Central
Joined Briess February 2014
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree in Agriculture with a focus is food science and animal science from University of Tennessee
Profile: Dona has 20+ years in technical sales concentrating on value added and functional ingredients across the full range of applications in the industrial food and animal nutrition industries. For 21 years prior to joining Briess, she worked as a broker/distributor which later became a manufacturing company. During her last 8 years as a broker/distributor, she gained extensive knowledge of the Briess lines. Dona’s focus on relationship building is key to understanding customer needs, which has proven to be a catalyst for growth both professionally and personally.

Mike Schott, Division Manager—West
Joined Briess September 2013
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree in Communications from Portland State University
Profile: Mike brings vast experience in business development, sales and marketing in the food industry. He has knowledge and experience with bakery, confection, dairy, food service, health and snack foods. He has a deep understanding of clean-label, natural, organic, and gluten-free. Mike is also very active with the IFT.

Jaston Batterman, Quality Manager—Ingredients
Joined Briess April 2006
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree with a double major in Soil Science and Natural Resources from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Earned an Accredited Environmental Studies Certificate
Profile: Prior to joining Briess, Jason worked for Kelling Laboratory in Madison, WI in its vegetable plant and cereal crop research program. In his role at Briess, Jason focuses on quality support of the Extract Plant and Insta Grains® facilities. He is responsible for quality approval of process improvements, reviews root cause analysis of deviations, provides customer and regulatory audit support, and oversees the Extract Plant analytical laboratory. Jason is a WDATCP Certified Laboratory Analyst, is an AIB Trained HACCP Participant for the Extract Division, and is a member of the Extract Plant Food Defense Team.

Betsy Roberts, Quality Manager—Malting
Joined Briess June 2009
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree with a double major in Biochemistry and Food Science from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Profile: Experience in both the malting and food industries. Prior to coming to Briess, Betsy worked as a Quality Control Supervisor for the J.M. Smucker Company. Betsy started her professional experience in the malting industry, gaining experience in both malting production and quality analysis while working for Anheuser-Busch and the USDA Cereal Crops Research Unit Barley and Malt Division. Betsy started with Briess in the Technical Services Group, driving various projects to improve malt quality, including method validations and new method development. She has served as a company regulatory resource, allergen technical resource, and product analysis resource, as well as provided quality training and developed procedures in various areas of the Briess quality system. In her current role, Betsy is responsible for assuring product quality at each of the three Briess malthouses, as well the barley operation. She also manages the two malt analytical labs in Chilton and Manitowoc. Betsy is a member of the ASBC, MBAA, and AACC.

Judie Giebel, Technical Services Representative,
Food and Bakery

Joined Briess July 1987
Education: Judie is an AIB Certified Ingredient Service Provider and an AIB Certified Baker (American Institute of Baking).
Profile: Judie has extensive experience with the malting and food ingredients divisions at Briess. Indepth knowledge of production processes, capabilities and scheduling, raw materials, quality control procedures, ingredient applications and new product development. Hands-on and applications development experience.

Dan Bies, Technical Services Representative,
Pilot Brewery

Joined Briess November 2007
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point. Attended brewing courses at Seibel Institute and microbiology courses at Silliker Laboratories
Profile: Prior to joining Briess, Dan gained experience as a chemist and lab leader in several industries. At Briess, Dan is responsible for performing malt analysis, microbiological testing, brewing and R&D projects, including new product development and process improvement. Dan manages the pilot brewing and pilot plant operations and commercialization of new products in the extract plant. Recent projects include gluten free beer, malta, fermented malt beverage base and downstream beer color and flavor adjustment products. He regularly helps formulate recipes for home and craft brewers and has published articles, posters and given presentations in support of the craft brewing industry. Prior to joining the technical service staff, Dan was an analyst in the malting lab.

Jordon Geurts, Technical Services Associate
Joined Briess October 2013
Education: Jordon earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology with an emphasis in Ecology and Organismal Biology from the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh
Profile: Prior to Briess, Jordon worked with the USDA in its Cereal Crops Research Unit as a Lab Technician in the Barley Malt Quality Lab in Madison, WI. In his role at the USDA he specialized in small batch and pilot malting. In his current role at Briess, he provides technical support services for quality assurance, quality control, and R&D projects.

Cassie Liscomb, Technical Services Associate
Joined Briess June 2014
Education: Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from Old Dominion University and a Master of Forestry Degree from Michigan Technological University. She also attended the Sensory Panel Management Course at Siebel Institute of Technology, completed sensory training from Nestle USA, and received HACCP certification from AIB International
Profile: Prior to joining Briess, Cassie worked as a Chemist at MillerCoors where she provided analytical support to the Hop and Cereal Chemistry Labs, performed pilot malting services, and served as an Official Taster on the Milwaukee Corporate Taste Panel. In Cassie’s current role, she provides technical support for Quality and R&D projects with a focus on sensory evaluation and method development. She is responsible for developing, enhancing, and managing the Briess Malt Sensory Program, which allows her the opportunity to work closely with customers to better understand malt flavor. Cassie is a passionate member of the ASBC Sensory Technical Subcommittee, on which she currently serves as Chair of Malt Sensory Method Development. She is also a member of the Society of Sensory Professionals.

Return to Top