Dogfish Head announces new president


Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, named George Pastrana as the new president and chief operating office of the company, following a year-long search.

The search has been under way since Nick Benz resigned as CEO of the company and co-founder Sam Calagione returned to the top post. Calagione said at the time that the company would hire a chief operating officer.

“George has impressed us every step of the way with his integrity, people-first, products-second leadership philosophy, sound experience at high level strategic planning, and his recognition that innovation and brand distinction are at the heart of every successful entrepreneurial company’s raison d’etre,” says Calagione. “These very same priorities have driven me and my co-workers since we opened Dogfish Head as the smallest commercial brewery in the country in 1995. We have come a long way and we are very excited George is now joining us on our journey, as the leader of Dogfish Head’s leaders.”

Pastrana comes to Dogfish by way of ACH Food Companies where he spent six years as chief marketing officer/vice president of marketing & Innovation.


He holds an MBA in Marketing from Cornell University – Johnson Graduate School of Management and is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he studied Biomedical Engineering.

“I’m a person who loves the potential of brands and the energy they inspire,” Pastrana stated in a release. “Dogfish is innovative and entrepreneurial and I am looking forward to this opportunity; plus, I am a foodie at heart and Dogfish is a food lovers beer.”

Pastrana relocated from Illinois to to join Dogfish. The appointment is effective immediately. George will reporting directly to Calagione. His spouse Mariah Calagione maintains her position as Executive Vice President and co-founder.

Pastrana’s appointment comes at a time when Dogfish Head is seeing growing sales after a couple of years when a combination of supply constraints and stiff competition in the craft brewing industry led to slow or no growth. Dogfish Head refrained from deep discounting during that period.

Dogfish Head has since added a canning line and expanded its sales territory to additional states. Dogfish also added a minority shareholder as it prepared for slower sales and stiffer competition.

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