Partial Transcript: Hello. Um, uh, today--for official purposes, today is May 24th, uh, 2016. My name is Janice Fernheimer.
Segment Synopsis: Kate Shapira Latts discusses her family and growing up in a family business. Her family runs Heaven Hill, and from an early age Latts was very proud and interested in her family's company. The family business was prevalent in all aspects of the Shapiras' lives. Kate conducted childhood science experiments on the alcohol yields of several types of wheat. Latts was born in Louisville, Kentucky in 1971. Her mother is Ellen Shapira, her father is Max Shapira, and her brother is Andy Shapira.
Keywords: Andy Shapira; Bardstown (Ky.); Bardstown, Kentucky; Chattanooga (Tenn.); Chattanooga, Tennessee; Civil War; Ellen Shapira; Family businesses; Florida; Louisville (Ky.); Louisville, Kentucky; Max Shapira; Paramount Foods; University of Kentucky; West Coast
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Childhood; Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Whiskey industry--Kentucky
Map Coordinates: 38.244, -85.781
Partial Transcript: I wonder, can you talk a little bit about the ways that Jewishness figured into your life growing up?
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses the influences that formed her Jewish identity and how it has shaped her life. She was very active in the National Council of Jewish Women's junior council leadership development program. She also attended Camp Birch Trail in Minong, Wisconsin.
Keywords: B'nai Brith Youth Organization (BBYO); Camp Birch Trail; Chapel Hill; Cincinnati (Ohio); Cincinnati, Ohio; Duke University; Freeman Center; Hadassah; Hillel; Israel; Jewish Federation; Jewish identity; Jewishness; Judaism; Louisville (Ky.); Louisville, Kentucky; Minong (Wis.); Minong, Wisconsin; National Council of Jewish Women; Neil Simon; North Carolina; Proctor and Camble; Summer camps; Wisconsin
Subjects: Childhood; Families.; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Recreation; Religion; Worship (Judaism)
Map Coordinates: 46.096, -91.861
Partial Transcript: I wonder if I can take you back a little bit to talk about kind of how your parents, um, in--in--shared Judaism with you.
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses how her parents, Ellen and Max Shapira, shared Judaism with her. She tells stories of how her family used to celebrate Christmas every year. Latts says on the subject, "there was never a question of our Jewish identity. It was just a cultural thing that we did." Latts discusses how, even though her large family all went to different synagogues, they would always celebrate the Jewish holidays together.
Keywords: Adath Jeshurun Synagogue (Louisville); Andy Shapira; Christmas; Ellen Shapira; Family traditions; Hanukkah (also Chanukah and other spellings); Jewish holidays; Keneseth Israel Synagogue (Louisville); Kosher; Max Shapira; Reform Judaism; Shabbat (also Shabbos, Sabbath); Temple Adath Israel (Lexington, synagogue); The Last Night at Ballyhoo; Traditions; United States
Subjects: Families.; Family histories.; Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)
Partial Transcript: Do you have any female role models in your family that, that you think of that helped you imagine who you might become?
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses the cumulative experiences that influenced her aspirations and ambitions. One woman who inspired Latts was her aunt, also named Ellen Shapira (same name as Kate's mother), who had a meaningful career in the 1980s, a time when it was not the status quo to do so. Latts continues to discuss the social norms in our society today and society's view on women in the workplace.
Keywords: 1980s; Bardstown, Kentucky; Brown-Forman Corporation; Canada; Center for Responsive Politics; Chicago (Ill.); Chicago, Illinois; Distilled spirits industry; Duke University; Family; Female role models; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Louisville (Ky.); Louisville, Kentucky; Mary Berrazotto; North America; Social norms; Trailblazing; Washington (D.C.); Washington, D.C.; Women in the workplace
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Childhood; Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Whiskey industry--Kentucky; Women in the whiskey industry; Women--Employment.
Map Coordinates: 37.809, -85.4669
Partial Transcript: But to get back to your particular industry--
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses her role in her family's business, Heaven Hill, where she is the Vice President of Marketing. She says that she loves her job because it is very fast-paced and she deals with a wide variety of projects every day, from marketing issues to commercials that they shoot with the rapper 2 Chainz. She also discusses the social norms of women with careers and the dynamics of working with her family.
Keywords: 2 Chainz (Artist); Allan Latts; Bardstown (Ky.); Bardstown, Kentucky; Family businesses; Family dynamics; Hypnotiq; Kentucky; Lunazul; Mexico; New York; Social norms; Tequila; Vodka; Women in the workplace
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Whiskey industry--Kentucky; Women in the whiskey industry; Women--Employment.
Partial Transcript: Are there any industry legends or fables that you feel like would be useful for us to know about?
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses an industry legend, Bill Samuels. Samuels started Maker's Mark and created a mystique and allure about the brand. Latts discusses the lack of racial diversity in Heaven Hill's management, which she attributes to the relatively small pool of eligible applicants in Louisville, Kentucky. Latts also discusses why there are so many Jewish people in the industry.
Keywords: African Americans; Bardstown (Ky.); Bardstown, Kentucky; Bill Goldring; Bill Samuels; Bourbon festivals; Buffalo Trace Distillery.; Chaplin family; Diversity; Fables; Fireball; Glazer family; Industry legends; Jews; Kentucky; Louisville (Ky.); Louisville, Kentucky; Maker’s Mark Distillery; Maria the Jewess; New Orleans (La.); New Orleans, Louisiana; New York; Southern Wine and Spirits; Texas
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Jewish families.; Whiskey industry--Kentucky
Map Coordinates: 29.951, -90.07
Partial Transcript: Um, switching gears a little bit--
Segment Synopsis: Latts tells the stories behind the names of some brands Heaven Hill produces, such as Larceny and Black Heart. Latts goes on to discuss some of her proudest moments in the industry, such as the creation of the first pomegranate liqueur, Pama. She also discusses the evolution of marketing in today's world. Latts notes that her daughter, Lindsay, wants to work in the family business when she grows up.
Keywords: Bardstown (Ky.); Bardstown, Kentucky; Blackheart spiced rum; Captain Morgan; Elijah Craig bourbon whiskey; Evan Williams bourbon whiskey; Jake Latts; John Fitzgerald; Kentucky; Larceny Kentucky Straight Bourbon; Larry Kass; Lindsay Latts; Old Fitz; PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur; Pirates; Spiced rum
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Branding (Marketing); Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Whiskey industry--Kentucky; Women in the whiskey industry
Partial Transcript: You talked so much about the, the intertwining of family and business...
Segment Synopsis: Latts discusses the Jewish values that her family and Heaven Hill find most important, such as hard work, education, and family. She does note, however, that these values are not at all limited to the Jewish religion.
Keywords: African Americans; Allan Latts; Bernheim Distribution; Bourbon Heritage Center; Catholic; Chicago (Ill.); Chicago, Illinois; Education; Evan Williams bourbon whiskey; Family; Hard work; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Jewish values; Jewishness; New York; Prosperity Whiskey; Starbucks
Subjects: Alcohol industry.; Bourbon whiskey; Distillation.; Distilleries--Kentucky; Distillers.; Family-owned business enterprises.; Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc.; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Religion; Whiskey industry--Kentucky
Map Coordinates: 41.878, -87.629
FERNHEIMER: Um, uh, today--for official purposes, today is May 24th, uh, 2016.My name is Janice Fernheimer. I am the director of Jewish Studies at the University of Kentucky. It is my great honor and pleasure to have the opportunity to talk with, uh, Kate Shapira Latts here at Heaven Hill. Um, and this interview will become part of the Jews and Alcohol, Jews and Bourbon subset of the Jewish Kentucky--Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence, Jewish Kentucky Oral History Reposit--Repository. OK, I can't even say it straight. It's so long.
FERNHEIMER: Um, but, uh, thank you so much for--for giving us the--
FERNHEIMER: --opportunity to talk today. Um, I want to start by asking somepretty, uh--they might seem very simple questions, but, um, just to get us to tell you a little bit about yourself, if you could state your name at birth and when and where you were born.
LATTS: Sure. Um, I'm Kate Shapira Latts. Um, I was born Kate Louise00:01:00Shapira. I was born here in Louisville in 1971. Um, I grew up here in Louisville my whole life, uh, went away to college, was gone for eight, nine years post-college, and then moved back to Louisville just about 15 years ago.
FERNHEIMER: Nice. I just had the pleasure of speaking with your father thismorning, um, and I--I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about your mom and your brother. Uh, for the official record, what are their names and ages relative to you, and if you could tell me a little bit about your relationship with them.
LATTS: Sure. Um, my mom is Ellen Shapira. Um, she also is a Louisvillian. Herfamily also is in a family business in the pickle business, uh, long, old Louisville company called Paramount Foods. Um, you know, her family came to Louisville around the time of the Civil War, so they really have been 00:02:00here a long time, um, and she and my dad met when they were in high school. My dad's sister, whose name also was Ellen, was best friends with my mom, and that is how my parents met. Um, so my mom was twenty-five when she had me and, um, is going to be seventy this year. Um, my brother is three years younger than I am. He just turned forty-two. His name is Andy Shapira. He also lives here and works with the company. Um, he also went away to college and was gone for a long time and, um, came back, I think, about ten years ago.
FERNHEIMER: Nice. Um, in, um, a lot of the articles that I've read about you,you talk about the way the family business figured into your childhood. And I think I recall in one you said that while others played, played house, you played store.
FERNHEIMER: Um, can you tell me a little bit about that?
LATTS: Right. Um, well, I think I always knew that I wanted to go00:03:00into business. I was always very enterprising and, yeah, when other people were--were, um, playing house, I was either, um, playing store or playing teacher, because I liked to kind of direct how things were going. Um, and, you know, growing up, I always say, in a family business is such a cool, interesting, unique paradigm to what most kids have of their parents getting up in the morning and going to a job, um, that they may--the kids may or may not really have a sense of what it is. They might know the name of the company, but they don't--the parents come home, and they become parents, and they become a family, and--and their work stays at their work. And when you grow up in a family business, um, it's just such a different paradigm that, from a very early age, I knew that our family had a family business, and my dad worked as part of it, and it just permeated all aspects of our life, whether it was 00:04:00nightly dinners, when my dad would take a phone call to people on the West Coast, um, because of the time difference or family vacations where we were always going in liquor stores and checking out the--the shelf sets, um, to even us coming along on business meetings and my brother and I sitting in the lobby with my mom while my dad had a meeting when we were driving through Chattanooga on the way to Florida, um, or, you know, even when we were older, going out on business dinners and very much being a part of it. And of course, the fun parts--I mean, it was all fun, but going out with our dad to Bardstown on the weekends and driving around on the forklift trucks or exploring the label room and--and finding--oh, I thought they were stickers, so that was great fun. Um, but it's just--it's just an amazing experience to have, and, from a very early age, formulated my thoughts about family, about business, and about what I wanted to be when I grew up.
FERNHEIMER: Was it the kind of thing that, you know, when you have thoseprojects in school and, you know, to either bring your parents in to 00:05:00talk about, you know, careers--
FERNHEIMER: --or, um, to do a co--was it--figure into the kind of researchthings you did about careers?
LATTS: For sure. Yeah, well, a couple things, um--one, you know, every child hasto do the obligatory science fair project. So I--in middle school, I had to do them two--two years in a row or whatever. So the first year, I made bourbon--
LATTS: --so we had--there was, like, a model still that we had in the labat--um, out at--at the--in Bardstown, and we brought that in, and we cooked the mash on the stove, and we added the yeast, and it fermented, and I took my little notes, and then we distilled it. Um, and so I just demonstrated the process of--of converting grains and starches into alcohol through the fermentation and distillation process. So then, the next year, I got fancy and wanted to do science fair experiments to see which grain or which starch best converts to alcohol, has the highest yield to alcohol. So that second year, I did one looking at corn again and then rice and wheat. So, um, we--we 00:06:00did all three grains and all three mash cooking on the stove. I remember to this day the bubbling up and the mess it created on the stove and my mom being like, "What is happening to my kitchen?" So that, for sure, you know--I would not have been intrigued or interested in doing something like that without, you know, from the very beginning knowing that that's what we did. So that was one thing.
The second thing I remember, in fifth grade, um, we got to host a field trip formy fifth grade class out to Bardstown. And we went to Heaven Hill. We got to tour the distillery and the bottling facility, and then we also went, um, in my old Kentucky home and--and the cathedral in Bardstown. And I just remember feeling so proud that we had been able to initiate and orchestrate and lead this whole field trip. I just remember feeling really special and cool about it.
LATTS: Um, but then, as I got older, um, I always knew I wanted to be00:07:00in business. I was very into foreign languages. Um, I was just starting to travel a lot and ex--spread my wings, and at that point in time I wasn't so certain that I would come back and work for the family business. It wasn't really something--a--a conscious decision that I was making not to, but I think I had other things on my mind like wanting to go out and see the world. And the thought of living in Louisville, in Kentucky, as a twenty-one-year-old was pretty less than appealing. Um, so that was not ever in the consideration set. You know, when I graduated from college, I was for sure going to go on to a bigger city and work someplace else and get experiences, and I don't think that it was actually until I got back to business school that it had really solidified in my mind--or maybe right before I was going to business school--that something evolved, and I can't tell you. I don't have a moment in time where all of the sudden it clicked and changed, um, but by the time I went back to business school, I think I knew my ideal thing would be to come back and work with the family and work here at Heaven Hill.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. I wonder, can you talk a little bit about the ways00:08:00that Jewishness figured into your life growing up?
LATTS: Um, so, you know, living here in Louisville, it was--in--in Kentucky, itwas never like we had tons and tons of Jewish friends around us. Um, I always had a couple Jewish friends. You know, like most kids, I hated going to Sunday school. Uh, it was--the people--my friends weren't there. It was--it was, you know, never a good experience. Um, I was not involved in BBYO clubs, um, but found my own thing. Um, National Council of Jewish Women had a junior council leadership development--
LATTS: --program, which was a very big part of my teenage years, and Iparticularly was interested in this because my mother and my grandmother had been very involved, A, and, B, it just so happened that--I went to summer camp in Wisconsin for seven years, and many of my friends happened to be involved in NCJW junior council as opposed to BBYO. So we would see each other at 00:09:00conventions, and I ended up being on the national board, and I was a great leadership experience for me growing up. Um, so I was always, you know, more connected from a Jewish perspective to my friends, you know, through my camping years and through my leadership experiences, um, which then have--I think have translated into some of my involvement today as an adult.
FERNHEIMER: What, um--can you tell me the name of the summer camp you went toand also your--LATTS: Sure.
FERNHEIMER: --about your involvement now as an adult?
LATTS: Sure. Um, so I went to Camp Birch Trail in Minong, Wisconsin, and it'sa--a girls' camp that--mostly all the kids are Jewish there, but it's not a Jewish programming camp.
LATTS: And it was--I--you know, my husband says he's never met someone who lovestheir camp as much as I did. And when we had our daughter, I was most excited to be having a girl because I knew she could go to Birch Trail, and she's about to start her sixth summer--
FERNHEIMER: Oh, wow.
LATTS: --um, and had seven of her camp friends come in for her bat mitzvah lastmonth, so it's really awesome, and we get to go back every year now 00:10:00for visiting weekend, and it's--it's great. It was a wonderful, wonderful place. Um, so before I get to the--my involvement today, I think, like a lot of college kids, I don't want to say I--I lost my Jewishness, because that's not really true. But in college, it wasn't a big priority for me. Um, I went to Duke in North Carolina, and we did not have a super active Hillel, which is a shame, because now there is the most beautiful, um, Jewish center called the Freeman Center for, um, Jewish Studies, and it's--it's beautiful and wonderful and so active, and we did not have that when I was there, um, which is a big deal, because you didn't have a place that was inviting and welcoming to go, so I didn't go. Um, the place we had was in a basement of the chapel in some icky, dark room, so I didn't go. And I remember going for high holidays. You had to go to Chapel Hill--
LATTS: --and it was not very accessible. And so I think that was a00:11:00shame, so it's a--it's really important for kids to have access to--to be Jewish, um, even, um, during those--those college years where there are so many other priorities and whatnot. We didn't have Jewish fraternities and sororities at Duke, and I ended up with a great mix of friends. You know, I was really focused during my college years on spreading my wings and meeting all different kinds of people. Um, I was really excited to be with so many smart, talented people that, um, you know, quite honestly, I hadn't had in my life growing up here, coming from a smaller place. Um, so that was really my focus, um, those meaningful friendships of all different types of religions and all different types of geographies and backgrounds and so forth. And of course, I had a few Jewish friends in that mix too. I also dated someone who was not Jewish, um, so it was just not a big priority in my life, but nothing negative. It just wasn't a big priority.
LATTS: So then, when I got to business school and I met my to-be husband, Allan,who also works at Heaven Hill--he's the chief operating officer, um, 00:12:00I think--I don't want to say right then and there my Jewishness reconnected. But rather, when we moved to Cincinnati, um, after graduating from business school and took our first jobs with Procter and Gamble and we were moving to a new city, um, we didn't know anybody. We were both going to be working at Procter and Gamble, where we were like, "Oh, gosh, we're going to be together. You know, there's lots of young people here, but this just would be too much if all of our friends are from Procter and Gamble." So we made this concerted effort. We wanted to have outside friends, and both of us instantaneously thought, "Let's call the Jewish Federation." And so we called the Jewish Federation. I think we actually probably called the Federation here in Louisville, or one of my parents did, and got us a contact, and we got super involved. And it was--initially, because we--we're social people. We want to have friends, and we didn't have kids and wanted to meet people and just--you know, I want to say we 00:13:00drank the Kool-Aid of the involvement and the leadership and the importance of giving back to the community and cultivating, um, young people to--to do good and--and do meaning in their life beyond their working and enjoying life and exercising or traveling or whatever. Um, so that was really the seeds of our involvement, and we became very involved in Cincinnati pretty quickly, went on a mission to Israel with the young adult group there. Um, I chaired an event that was awesome in Cincinnati--it was a long time ago now, um--where it--and one of the issues in Cincinnati, even in a city, um, like Cincinnati that has many more Jews than we have here in Louisville, is that there were, at that time--this is--we're talking the late '90s--every organization had its own young adult group.
LATTS: From the synagogues to JNF to the Federation to the JCC to00:14:00Hadassah to NCJW, all of these entities had their young persons' group, and they were all competing, even in a place like Cincinnati, for leadership and involvement and participation, and they often were in competition and dis--not disregard, but just, I guess, competition for each other. And so I had an event that was for all the young people in Cincinnati, and every organization had someone on the committee to help plan it. And it was a huge success. It was great. I can still remember it, um, so it was really fun.
So then, when we moved here to Louisville, it was just a natural, um, thing forus to pick right up where we left off in Cincinnati. When we moved to Louisville again, I didn't have many friends still from high school, so we were looking to meet people, and we got involved with the young adult group of the Federation, met a lot of people that way, and sort of ascended through the ranks of, um, that organization and went through a lot of the evolutions and 00:15:00revolutions of things that have gone on in the structure or infrastructure, rather, of the Louisville Jewish community.
FERNHEIMER: Wow. Wow, so it sounds like--you know, you talk about college asbeing--it sort of going into the background a little bit--
FERNHEIMER: --and then it came back really into the foreground.
LATTS: Right, right, and so it's interesting, because our son, who is almostsixteen, is in sort of an anti-Jewish place at--you might say, at this point. And you know, my husband is, like, all worried and, "Oh, he doesn't have any Jewish friends, and why doesn't he do this?" And I'm just like--and you know, I even mentioned to the rabbis, you know, when we were going through the process with our daughter, the bat mitzvah process, and, uh, you know, there's phases. And at different points in your life, different things are important, but deep down, you know, I know that he thinks Jewish causes are important, and his Jewish identity is there. It's just, right now, he doesn't understand this, that, or the other parts of it. Um, so this is not concerning to me. 00:16:00
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. It--I like that you're talking about, you know, your--yourdiffering ideas as parents--
FERNHEIMER: --um, about your children. I wonder if I can take you back a littlebit to talk about kind of how your parents, um, in--in--shared Judaism with you.
FERNHEIMER: Uh, what was their relationship to Judaism like?
FERNHEIMER: What did they teach you, um?
LATTS: Well, it's interesting, because, um, my mom's family having--having comeduring the mid-1800s were very typical German assimilated Jews. Um, we like to tell the story in the Neil Simon show The Last Night at Ballyhoo, um, where the family is putting--the daughter is putting the star on the top of the Christmas tree, and the dad or someone says, "Lala, don't you know Jews don't have the stars on the top of their Christmas tree?" And that's the family my mother grew up in, um, celebrated Christmas, stockings, the whole nine yards. And growing up, my dad, you know--not bat and bar mitzvahs, certainly not keeping kosher, um, very, very assimilated, and my dad's family had come--the Shapira 00:17:00family had come to the United States more recently, more of the turn of the century, turn of the twentieth century, um, and was still conservative. And I remember the two--my grandparents, it started with them, had different philosophies not just on the religious but the cultural aspects too. And my mother's family was much more formal, and the role of children and that, you know--more that children should be seen and not heard. You would never go out on a Saturday night with your children, and her--my--I remember my mom telling the stories that my--my mom's parents used to look down on my dad's parents because, you know, they were the--the conservative Jews who had just come, and they were so--they were so cultural, and they did all these things, and they would go out to the movies with their kids on a Saturday night, and who did that? Um, so I think it started with them.
So, interestingly, my dad was always very much thinking that my mom's family'straditions were pretty fun. So, when I was little, we had stockings. 00:18:00We celebrated Christmas, and my mom's whole family did. And, you know, we celebrated with them. I mean, certainly there was no Jesus or God or church or anything, but, you know, we got presents on Christmas day my whole--growing up, um, but there was never a question of our Jewish identity. It was just a cultural thing that we did. Um, you know, when we were little, we lit the Shabbat candles, um, but as we got older, it wasn't something that, um--that was a major ritual with my family. You know, as the kids--as we got older and were in high school, it wasn't that it was a required Friday night dinner or anything. So I think my parents gave us an--values initially that--that stuck but didn't become super strict such that it wasn't a major focus. I did not have a bat mitzvah. Um, it was a time in the '80s, early '80s, when most girls were having bat mitzvahs, certainly at Reform synagogues. Um, I did not want one, and my dad was super disappointed but never mean or mad about it, but was 00:19:00always encouraging, and I didn't want to do it. I was very focused on school and just didn't want to do it, and I didn't. And, you know, I think my mom was always kind of cheering along, like, "Yeah, see, she doesn't have to do it." --(laughs)-- But my brother had a bar mitzvah, and he was, you know, excited and happy to do it, and that was--was that.
Um, you know, all--in high school, I dated non-Jewish people. As I mentioned, incollege I dated non-Jewish people, and my parents never had said, "Boo," had any worry, encouraged anything different at all, and just knew it would be fine. And my brother married someone who is not Jewish, but they're--and--and who is raising their kids Jewish and is--is Je--has never converted but is bringing those kids up as more Jewish than many other families. My parents were very laidback with that regard when it came to that in contrast to my husband's family, who ha--he has an older sister who was very much frowned upon 00:20:00for ever dating anybody not Jewish. And unfortunately, she's almost fifty and has never been married. So my parents just had a different approach, and it all worked out for them.
FERNHEIMER: Wow. So you've talked a little bit around this. I hope this questiondoesn't sound too redundant, but could you--how--in your own words, how would you describe your own Jewish identity today?
LATTS: Right. Um, my own Jewish identity is, um--I absolutely identify withbeing Jewish. I have very much enjoyed bringing my kids up Jewish and especially when they're little--well, not especially when they're little, but it was so easy and exciting to be Jewish when they're little. Like, you're looking for things to do, you know, when your kids are little, and--
FERNHEIMER: Oh, I know.
LATTS: --our kids--our kids went to Jewish preschools. It was never a thoughtthat they weren't going to. You know, we loved having challah every Friday, and we, um, love lighting the candles. But then, as things got busy, being a Reform Jew, we like to modify things in the Latts household. So, you know, 00:21:00maybe as they started having sleepovers or doing something on Friday night, we changed the things a bit, and sometimes we would light the candles and have challah on Saturday morning. So we do what works for us, and our kids have absolute Jewish identities, but they go to a school without a lot of Jewish kids here in Louisville. They both go to Jewish summer camp, and I feel good that we're--my Jewish identity, the level of my and my husband's Jewish identity is very much being conveyed to them. Um, you know, today, I--I am very supportive of--of, um, causes I believe in. You know, I--I'm not going to just believe in everything this for Israel or that because I'm Jewish. I--I'm going to think through what I believe in and what is right for me and my family and my people, um, but I don't like to say, "Just because you're this, you have to 00:22:00believe this, or you have to do this." Um, so we're very much classic, modern Reform Jews that, you know--we--we like to be open-minded and, um, do what's right for us.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Um, I hope it's okay if I switch gears a little bit. Um, youstarted talking about remembering as a child these, you know--these kind of blurred boundaries between family and business where--
LATTS: Um-hm, Um-hm, Um-hm.
FERNHEIMER: --you know, family vacations included these stops at liquors--liquorstores and checking out what was there. Can you tell me a little bit about--a little more about the blurred boundaries between bourbon, business, and being a kid? Um, you spoke a little bit about how it was a point of pride for you, uh, and the focus of the family, but I wonder if there's anything else that you wanted to share.
LATTS: Well, the family was--is very--was very large and just fun. You know, Iremember the whole family getting together for--for the--in particular, the Jewish holidays, because my dad's family belonged to a couple 00:23:00different synagogues in town. And, um--
FERNHEIMER: Which ones? Do you--
LATTS: Uh, well, so they started at Adath Jeshurun. That's where the Shapirafamily started, um, but then my dad married my mom, and we switched to the temple. And then, one of the other people of--
FERNHEIMER: Adath Israel, Temple Adath Israel?
LATTS: Yeah, Temple Adath Israel, Brith Sholom, right. Um, that's where my momhad grown up, and then one of my dad's cousins had married someone whose family was at Keneseth. So it was the blending of--of--of all this. Um, but we always worked together for, um, a huge Hanukkah party. You know, everybody came together. One year, it was at my grandmother's house. One year, it would be at my great-aunt's house, and everybody was there. I do remember that, because some of the other cousins, being little, were getting all these presents, all these presents, and me--and my brother and I being like, "Why aren't we getting more presents?" and my parents saying, like, "Well, you have Christmas too." --(laughs)-- So I remember that, um, and also we had a huge break-fast, huge break-fast, and I--and--and everybody coming together, and it 00:24:00was all connected, like, you knew that we were all involved in this family business. And it was just fun. Like, it felt like you were part of, like, a TV show family or something like that. --(laughs)-- It was, um--it was--it was, um, just always there. Like, you knew you had this connection with your cousins beyond just being cousins. You had something else that we were all in together. That was pretty--pretty neat.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Can you--what kind of--what did you guys eat at--at thesefamily--was it--was it--
LATTS: Nor--normal stuff. So, you know, we don't drink very much. Um, you know,it wasn't--these events were not big, big alcohol events by any means. They were very, very family events. You know, there are so many--you know, you go to so many other family events, Thanksgiving or whatever, when everyone is drinking beer all afternoon. Uh, we were not drinking bourbon all afternoon by--by any means, normal, normal food.
LATTS: Normal food.
FERNHEIMER: Uh, matzah balls and that kind--
LATTS: Yeah, sure, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --of stuff?
FERNHEIMER: Um, anything--
LATTS: Potato latkes and--I remember at the, um, break-fast, it was a00:25:00big bakeoff, and everybody brought different baked goods, and it was a whole spread of all sorts of sweets and whatnot.
FERNHEIMER: What was your favorite?
LATTS: But I don't remember there being a lot of actually--I did not grow upwith very traditional Jewish pastries. Like, rugelach and strudel were not parts of my growing up by any means, so, um, nothing really in particular stood out.
FERNHEIMER: No--nothing favorite from the bakeoff, anything?
LATTS: No, not--not anything in particular that I can remember. I do remember,um, at Hanukkah, one of the aunts would always have--and I don't remember if she made it or if she bought it or somewhere--a wreath of blue, light blue for Hanukkah, hard--like those old hard peppermint candies, and it was a wreath of them. I thought that was super cool. I always wanted to take that home. --(laughs)--
FERNHEIMER: Did you guys--did you play dreidel or anything like that,00:26:00or was it just gatherings?
LATTS: No, I--I don't--I think it was just gatherings, and I'm sure we did. Idon't--I don't particularly remember.
FERNHEIMER: Um, how did these experiences begin to influence your aspirationsand ambitions, um?
LATTS: Um, well, I don't--I think it was just all cumulative, of seeing howthese multi-generations together can be so meaningful and--and being--and, you know, so many other families, you know, a cou--if a--if a brother or a sister moves away, those first cousins--or far away and they're not--if they don't have grandparents coming back, like, there--there--there's no reason to come back, and so families just can diffuse pretty quickly. And we had this family that was connected here to something, and, you know--and anybody who did move away wanted to come back, because we would go out to see what was going on at Heaven Hill. Like, was the plant growing? You know, "Oh, look at this new bottling line, or look at this new thing," so there was always this draw to come back here. 00:27:00
LATTS: Um, and I just liked that. It was--it was fun and inspiring, and I think,as I said, there were years where I was like, "I'm never living in Louisville. Forget about that." Um, but then, I think, as I further matured and reconnected the importance of that family--you know, when you're in your early twenties, you're like, "I don't need anybody. I'm good. I'm independent, and I'm--I can be whatever I want, do whatever I want." And I think I went through that, and then you realize, "Wow, I'm going to have kids. I'm going to be married. I want to be by my family."
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Do you have any female role models in your family that--thatyou think of that helps you imagine who you might become?
LATTS: Right. Um, well, my aunt, my dad's sister, um, I've always beenparticularly close with. She--she did not live here. When she--after college, she moved away and never moved back, and she and her husband had--my 00:28:00uncle--had kids much later than my parents did. So even though they're the same age, but she's my mom--was my mom's best friend, so she's my mom's age, but my oldest cousin is eight years younger than I am. Um, but she always managed to have a very full life. You know, back in the '80s when I was growing up, not very many women had meaningful jobs, uh, meaningful careers, rather, um, and she did. She was always working when my ki--when my--my, um, cousins were young. She was still able to travel. Um, she was still able to come home and take care--you know, and visit her mother who lived here. Um, and so I just always remembered thinking that was pretty cool, like, how was she able to do it all.
Now, on the flipside, there were certain things that she wasn't able to do.Would she sometimes forget a birthday of mine or somebody? Maybe. You know, was there judgment along the way about her being so busy that she was 00:29:00forgetting some of these things from, maybe, my parents? Maybe. Um, but nonetheless, I think that she was a woman in the '80s who was trailblazing the concept of having priorities in your life and focusing on those priorities, and, yeah, maybe you can't do it all. Like, something has to give. You know, people who say you can do everything are not human. Um, but she was giving it a go, and I think some of the things maybe she didn't do quite right I have learned from and can maybe do differently, or the things she did well, having a lot of help--having a lot help helps--I can emulate, and I'd say she's--she's been the best role model.
FERNHEIMER: And--and what industry, remind me, is she in?
LATTS: Oh, well, she started a, um, think-tank in--she was always involved inpolitics and then got very involved in money and politics and was the original executive director of, um, a group called the Center for Responsive Politics, who led a lot of the early campaign finance reform, um, legislation 00:30:00and investigation and--and, um, she's moved on to do some other transparency and politics type work. Um, but she's always been very focused and connected in--in--in what she's been interested in.
FERNHEIMER: And you said that they had moved away. Where were they living?
LATTS: In DC.
FERNHEIMER: Oh, in DC, obviously.
LATTS: Yeah, yeah, yeah. She met her husband when she was in college and nevercame back to Louisville.
FERNHEIMER: Oh, but you still managed to have a very close relationship withher, it sounds.
LATTS: Well, because my grandmother was here, and I adored my cousins, you know,they were like the little girl cousins eight and twelve years younger than I, and so I loved when they came to town. And also, when I was at Duke, I went to--we--it wasn't that far. It was only four hours from DC, and--and Duke is a very DC-focused sort of place. And so we would go there for long weekends, and then I lived in DC, also, right after college--
FERNHEIMER: Oh, wow.
LATTS: --and one summer during college. So we--and we used to babysit for--formy cousins, so we were always really close.
FERNHEIMER: And what about in the industry itself, any female role models?00:31:00
LATTS: Yeah, that's a good question. You know, this is a big topic, um, that I'mgetting involved with, is how to promote more women in the distilled spirits industry. Um, I can't tell you how many meetings I go to where I am the only woman, um, many, many, many, many. You know, we go to conferences, and I always joke, like, "Well, at least there won't be a long line at the women's restroom." Um, so, you know, fortunately, we have here in Louisville with Brown-Forman, um, two very senior women in that organization who I've come to know, and, um, Jill Jones is their head of North America right now, and, um, Mary Berrazotto, who I really respect a lot. Um, she has two kids just like I do. Her kids are--the youngest is already in college, so quite a bit older than my kids, um, but her kids went to school where our kids go, and I've known her very much over the years and have lunch with her periodically and just always liked to 00:32:00glean how she did it, how--how she'd manage, and, you know, it's not her family's business, but a very senior woman in a very senior role, um, in this industry. She's--she's been a great resource.
FERNHEIMER: What did your grandmother or aunts or great-aunts tell you about thebusiness while you were a little girl?
LATTS: Right. Um--
FERNHEIMER: Or growing up?
LATTS: --well, I think my grandmother used to always regale us with storiesabout life in Bardstown. You know, my dad's, uh, new--main family were the only ones who actually lived in Bardstown, and I'm sure my dad told you the story of how my grandparents met. Yes? Did he tell you that story?
FERNHEIMER: A little bit, but I'm happy to hear your version.
LATTS: Yeah, well, so my grandmother was this big-city young lady in Chicago,and she and my grandfather met. And he said, "I'd like to get married, but we have to live in Bardstown," and she was like, "Okay." And I would have been like, "What?" I mean, who does that, right? I mean, who--who would move from--from a big city in the, you know--the heyday of the early '40s 00:33:00and want to come move to Bardstown, Kentucky. But she did, and I remember her telling stories about how she loved it. She was, like, the belle of the town. And, um, you know, they used to have the bourbon open and these, like, big events, and I remember, um, just her talking about all the friends she had, and we would meet some of them sometimes along the way. And she just loved everybody there, loved all the people, um, and I remember seeing, like, newspaper clippings and articles that had been written with my grandparents, like, living it up and just thinking that that was so funny and cool. Um, I don't know if my dad told you the story about, um, when he--when he was little, he went to Catholic school. Did he tell you the story of--FERNHEIMER: He told us a little bit about that.
LATTS: Yeah. I mean, I remember always hearing that story as well, and we justthought that was the most hilarious thing, that they were hiding from the rest of the relatives, the--from the grandparents.
FERNHEIMER: Oh, he didn't tell us that.
LATTS: Oh, oh, oh, okay, so--so my dad's birthday is in January, but,00:34:00of course, he was so brilliant, my grandparents didn't--and the cutoff was December 31st. They didn't want him to miss a whole year of school, so he had to go to private school. Well, in Bardstown, the only private school was the Catholic school, so he went to Catholic school. And he--and they would all come in every week at that point for a family dinner or a family meal. And his grandparents lived in Louisville, and the rest of the aunts and uncles came from other small towns where they were living. And he was told not to mention the nuns at--at the Catholic school, and I guess they would always be, like, worried he was going to say something or shushing him so he didn't--didn't say anything. So my brother and I used to think that story was just hilarious, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --(laughs)-- Um, what about--
LATTS: And they also--they made him take ballet class out in Bardstown too. --(laughs)--
FERNHEIMER: Oh, really?
FERNHEIMER: Why is that?
LATTS: We thought--I have no idea, but that's what my grandmother did, and wethought that was super funny.
LATTS: Yeah, so--so my aunt Anne, sh--I didn't hear stories of--from00:35:00her so much when I was younger. Um, the stories I heard were mostly from my grandmother, but she loves telling stories now, um, and--
FERNHEIMER: I'm hoping to get a chance to talk to her.
LATTS: Right, I know. I know. There was some piece of information that I wastrying to figure out around, um, the--the circumstances of the--the--the founding, the starting of Heaven Hill, last year, and she was the only person that I could possibly glean this information from. And I went to her, and she--she starts telling this story and setting the context and the time period. She's going on and on, and I'm, like, sitting there listening, listening, listening, and then she totally, like, went off on this whole tangent. I'm like, "Okay, she has no memory of what I was looking for," so, unfortunately, she--some of her recall is a little sketchy at the young age of 102.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. What were you trying to track down?
LATTS: Uh, well, we were trying to figure out--so the company was founded in1934. The incorporation papers are in July, though--no, no, yeah, the 00:36:00incorporation papers are July of two-thousand--of--of 1935, and the first barrel was filled December 13th in 1935. So I was trying to figure out what was going on in this whole sequence, because we knew the company was founded--well, we had always heard that the company was founded in 1934, but nobody could find any documentation of it.
LATTS: We had always heard 1934, and we now have kind of punted that thought andreally have now adopted this July of 1935. But forever, we had always heard it was founded in 1934, which seemed reasonable, because it would have taken about a year to make a distillery, to build a distillery.
LATTS: But we never could find any documentation.
LATTS: So I was trying to see if she had any insight, but she didn't.
FERNHEIMER: That's an interesting mystery.
LATTS: Yes, it was very sad too. --(laughs)--
FERNHEIMER: Anything that she did or has told you over the years that00:37:00stands out as particularly memorable, uh, while you were growing up or--
LATTS: Well, it was just also cool, her whole story of how she--her aunt wasmarried to one of the other brothers, and her older aunt was married to one of the oldest brothers. And they're from Canada.
FERNHEIMER: Name--the names of--
LATTS: Um, um, um, Gary, I think, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: Was the brother?
LATTS: Yeah, Gary was the brother, the older brother, who her aunt in Canadasomehow met and married. And so the two of them set Anne up with David, and they then got married. And because there was such an age span acro--among the five brothers, that seemed to work. Yeah, so that was always kind of a cool story.
FERNHEIMER: That is a great story. Um, any other stories from women in yourfamily or other women in the industry that have served as inspiration or that are particularly memorable?
LATTS: Um, well, I think just all the women were very proud of the rolethat they had and, um, just what--what the family was creating. I 00:38:00think everybody was just really, truly in it together, like I said, like on a TV show. You know, when there's five brothers and five wives, and, you know, back then, I think, as I understood, just--no decision got made unless all the brothers were aligned to it, even though my grandfather was the one who was running it day to day. They would have meetings every week, all together, Sunday mornings, I believe, and I just think they were incredibly close, and--and the wives all were very close as well. Um, you know, so I wasn't alive to know--see that interaction very much.
LATTS: Um, you know, by the time I was born, only three of the five brotherswere even alive. Um, so I never, you know, got to see that, but it sounds like it was pretty special.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. If there's one thing you hope other women in the industrycould learn from you as a role model, what might it be? 00:39:00
LATTS: Um, well--
FERNHEIMER: And you can have more than one if there are a few things that youwant to share.
LATTS: --yeah, well, you know, people are--in our industry are very into, rightnow, lamenting that there are so few women, but I don't think this industry is alone. I think there is a lot of male-driven industries, and, um, I think, you know--we here at Heaven Hill have a ton of women, a to--you know, our whole--
FERNHEIMER: I was checking that out on LinkedIn. I was impressed.
LATTS: --our whole marketing dep--our whole--yeah, our whole marketingorganization is--is very much women. Really, honestly, in my opinion, the issue in our industry is at the sale--on--on the sale side, and, and I get it. It's hard, because there's a certain point, you know--in sales, it's very much an out-and-about type role, and, when you go through those years of having your kids and wanting to be home, those are often the years when you're starting to make or break your career of going up from a sales rep through sales management and leadership. And I don't really have, like, the wonderful words of 00:40:00advice to them. I think, um, that, quite honestly, the most successful women often have husbands that play more of a house role, um, because it's very hard when you're raising kids to have parents out for business dinners all the time, um, traveling all the time. It does become very, very difficult. Um, but the one thing of advice--and this is not related to this industry, but the one thing you can do is have a lot of help. I mean, if you can inve--someone once told me when I was--just had one child, "Invest in help, because you can't do it all." You know, hopeful--you know, people are the most fortunate when their family members will step in and be helpful, um, and be able to take on a burden. But whether it be, you know--so you can go out and get your nails done or do 00:41:00something for yourself or go to an exercise class or--and be there for your kids, it helps you with the guilt, you know, certainly, of not being there with your kids, um, and--and just messaging to your kids around being there for the most important things, um, but finding help and the balance with your husband and give and take, and for some people it's periods of time in one person's career versus another that takes precedence. And some, it's--both are going along at the same clip all the way along, and then you have to just make adjustments. So communication, expectations, help, um, are really the best--the best things of advice I can give. I don't think there's anything in particular or magical about this industry different from any other industries, quite honestly, that would enable a woman to succeed more than others. I think we are kidding ourselves if we think this industry is so unique.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah, yeah. As someone who has recently had a small person enter themix with a--
FERNHEIMER: --dual-career house, I am listening to what you're saying, going,"Yes, yes, yes."
LATTS: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: This is all very true and important.00:42:00
FERNHEIMER: Um, but to get back to your particular industry--
FERNHEIMER: --you know, J.T. and I are working on this story, and we've got afemale protagonist, uh, in--in the role, in the leading role, and I was wondering, if you were telling a story about women in bourbon, what would your first chapter be about?
LATTS: Um, well, well, women in bourbon as a distiller or--
FERNHEIMER: You don't have to tell our story. You tell your story, whatever itis. It's a very open question.
LATTS: Well, I--right. So I wouldn't say I'm a woman in bourbon. I mean, HeavenHill, as you know, is Heaven Hill Brands, and bourbon is only about 20, 25 percent of our business. Um, so this is a little bit of a hard story for me to tell. I would not say that I've ever been a woman in bourbon, um, so this is not my story. Um, so--
FERNHEIMER: Would it help to think about a woman in alcohol?00:43:00
LATTS: Su--sure, I--I suppose. I--so--so--so what's awesome about Heaven Hilland what I love about my job is that it's super fast-paced because it's not just bourbon, that, in fact, I always tell the story--like, one minute, I'm talking about bourbon and the bass fishing partnership that we're working on and what our master distillers are doing and what the latest awards are and what writers are wanting to write about it. And then, the next minute, I'm talking about the rap video that we're shooting with 2 Chainz promoting our brand Hpnotiq, and what we're doing for fashion week. Um, and then, we're talking about our partners in Mexico who, um, help us promote Lunazul, our tequila. And so, to me, you know, this company is so big, it--it, again--it--it's--it's--it's just--it's so--it's so big. We do so many different things, and that's what's so 00:44:00exciting to me, um, to--to get to, you know, when--you know, ten years ago, the bourbon category was not what it is today.
LATTS: People weren't writing about bourbon every day. Um, people weren't--youngwomen were not consuming bourbon. You know, it's just a whole different thing. So we were super focused on vodka, and we spent all of our time on vodka, um, so this amazing diversified portfolio is what I love about our business. Um, you know, there's a lot of people trying to just do bourbon, and into the art and romance, and it is true that bourbon itself is a pretty amazing spirit because there's so much artistry to it than in a vodka, so much more, um, which is pretty--pretty awesome that that happens here in Kentucky. Ninety percent of it happens here in Kentucky from, um--just so many variables that go into it from the ingredient mix to the type of wood that's used in the aging to 00:45:00the type of warehouse that's used, um, to the type of blending that some people might do, of mixing of ages and mixing of barrels. I mean, trust me. There's a lot that goes on there, um, so there's lots of stories that somebody could tell if that's what someone did, you know, lived and breathed that process. Um, but I'm pretty far removed from that process for sure. Um, so my life is just the more--I don't want to glitz and glam, but the--the excitement of doing so many different things from the marketing perspective, and--
LATTS: --getting to travel and work with salespeople and work with agencies inNew York and, um, you know, se--seeing edgy, kind of different people in this thing, but then being with down-home people at the state fair when we're having our cooking contest. Like, just that vast array of things that I touch and when we come in and we're the--the owners of the company, and 00:46:00we're the leader--we're not just the owners, but we're the leaders. It--it--it's--it's kind of a rush of excitement. Um, there is one aspect not--not of this--it doesn't totally relate to this, but where was I just the other day? Where was I? Oh, I was--so we're--we've been having these big sales meetings with--we have a whole lot of new salespeople, um, with our distributors selling on our behalf, and, you know, I feel like oftentimes they may be like, "Why does--why does Kate work?" You know? They all ha--these are all, like, presidents of their states--
LATTS: --their wives probably--you know, they're certainly financially capableof not having their wives work. And I think still, to this day and age--I don't know the statistics, but I still feel like the vast majority of women who don't financially have to work don't. And so sometimes, I feel like people 00:47:00must be like, "Oh, well, she's just like a figurehead. Like, she--they're just kind of promo--you know, bringing her around because she's an owner, but she--she probably just doesn't really do anything." And then, um, as I've been making these presentations and I get up and make a presentation, and I think I'm a pretty good presenter, um I think people are like, "Oh, wow. Oh, wow, look, and her team. Oh, my God, her team is amazing." Um, I think it's fun to surprise people and not, um--to--to way exceed their expectations, um, because most people would be like, "Why does she work?" You know? "She doesn't have to have the stress, you know, of having kids and worrying about childcare", and--so you know it must be really fun, um, to be a part of this. Um--
LATTS: --so I think that is still a mindset, a paradigm, in the world in whichwe live, that hopefully, when our--my daughter is old--old--older, 00:48:00grown up, it won't be like that.
FERNHEIMER: Well, you talk about your aunt and this kind of amazing example--
LATTS: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --she set in the eighties before it was really a lot of women withchildren and careers.
LATTS: That's right.
FERNHEIMER: And a--and a substantive career.
FERNHEIMER: And now you and your husband are in a--in a different kind ofposition where you're both working in different areas--
LATTS: Yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --but in the same company.
FERNHEIMER: Talk to me a little bit about that and--and what's that like and--and--
LATTS: Working with my husband?
LATTS: It depends on the day. Um, so--
FERNHEIMER: Are your--are your offices close, or are they--
LATTS: Well, his main office is in Bardstown.
LATTS: My main office is here in Louisville. Um, he is here, though, a lot. Um,most of the time, it's fun and fine. Um, sometimes, it can be frustrating. As Allan has, um, become the chief operating officer, um, sometimes he gets a little bit of a god complex, and that can be annoying, um, for sure. And sometimes, I think he does--of all the leaders in the company, he 00:49:00doesn't take me as seriously because he also sees me as his wife, you know, full of female emotion and--and, you know, all those sorts of things that women do at home, um, or not in their work life. So sometimes that can be a little challenging. Um, I like working with my dad better than I like working with my husband some days. Um, but some--and some days, um, it all just depends on the day. Some days, it's great working with my brother, some days not so much. Um, but when it matters and we all come together, it's so fun, so fun, and there have been serious business things that we will solve around the pool. All the time that happens. And I think, while we've expanded our executive leadership team here at Heaven Hill, it makes it hard still for the non-family members, because they know at the end of the day we have this, um--not so much 00:50:00the pillow-side chat, which some people would think, between me and Allen, but the poolside chat of the who--of--of the four of us. Um, so--so in the big picture, we're all very well aligned, you know, but of course the day to day, sometimes, is a little--can be frustrating on occasion, on occasion. But most of the time, I get to do my thing. I run my thing. So it's when I get questioned that I get aggravated. --(laughs)--
FERNHEIMER: Yeah, yeah, I can ima--I--I can relate.
FERNHEIMER: My husband's office is around the corner from mine at work, so I understand--
FERNHEIMER: --from a personal perspective, I was curious about what that's likein this very--
FERNHEIMER: --high-powered, uh, role.
FERNHEIMER: Are there any industry legends or fables that you feel like would beuseful for us to know about?
LATTS: I can't really think of any, um--
FERNHEIMER: Women, not women.
LATTS: --well, I mean, probably here in Kentucky, the most iconic00:51:00industry person is, um, Bill Samuels with Maker's Mark and, you know, how--you know, my dad and he went to high school together in Bardstown, and his family lived in Bardstown. He was older than my dad, but how he started Maker's Mark--and it was just a one b--one-brand thing from the very beginning and worked that brad--brand and developed that brand, and he was as much the brand as any other part of the brand and was a very vivacious, loud, um, larger-than-life type person, and so much of that, what made the brand here locally. Um, and I remember when we first came back into the industry at--being at things like the Bourbon Festival, and he--there was always a stunt. He was always doing a stunt. Each year, it was a new stunt, promotional stunt, and being like, "What's--what are--what's Maker's Mark and Bill Samuels going to do this year?" Um, and now that the brand has been sold many times, I think he--he--and he's kind of mostly retired--um, all of that sort of 00:52:00ended, and the mystique about the brand, I think, a little bit went away as well. I mean, the brand is still super successful, but that allure and hype, the brand kind of moved--I guess you could say it moved beyond that, um, but that was a pretty, pretty neat entrepreneurial, um, thing that happened, the way this industry got promoted. You know, long before bourbon was what it is today--
LATTS: --they were out there, like, making Maker's Mark be, like, the best thing ever.
LATTS: And it was very successful.
FERNHEIMER: From what I understand, it was his wife who was behind the--
LATTS: Oh, is that right? I don't even--
FERNHEIMER: --the, um--the red wax that has become--
LATTS: --is that right?
FERNHEIMER: --part of the signature.
FERNHEIMER: Um, when we were sort of tracking down these stories about women,that was one of the most compelling ones that we encountered.
LATTS: Oh, nice, great. Yeah, cool.
FERNHEIMER: I believe that's in Fred Minnick's book.
LATTS: Yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: So I was going to ask you about that, but I guess you didn't knowabout it, and that's fine.
LATTS: I did not. I did not know about that.
LATTS: It rings a small bell.
FERNHEIMER: --(laughs)-- Um, uh, you've talked a lot about the00:53:00diversity in the portfolio and--and the fact that you're proud of the women in the, um, leadership roles at Heaven Hill. Are there other sorts of diversity at Heaven Hill and the broader industry that you've encountered, um, besides gender diversity?
LATTS: Um, right. Um, well, I would say that is a bit of a challenging thing forus. Um, recruiting in, um, roles here in management roles, uh, we don't have a tremendously diverse workforce here in Louisville, um, of the type of talent that we're looking for, to pull from, that's actually sort of a disappointing thing. I think if we were in other places, we would benefit from having access to more of a diverse, um, group of people that we could hire into marketing and--and sales even. Um, and in Bardstown, again, um, it's a fairly homogeneous group of people out in Bardstown, um, that it--it would have a very 00:54:00different makeup. You know, if we--if we lived in--if we--if our company was located in--in another place. Um, but I think it's reflective of--of certainly where--where we are.
LATTS: Um, but I--I do--we have to look to our agency partners, um, outside, youknow, quite honestly, in--in Texas and in New York to, um, bring the diversity that we are looking for and the connections and the access to--to--to other talent, other partnerships that we quite honestly don't have here.
FERNHEIMER: Um-hm. Um, so this--this is kind of a follow-up question, but arethere any interesting anecdotes about women, African Americans, or Jews, uh, in the bourbon industry or in the greater alcohol industry that you know about that you think we should know about?
LATTS: I mean, there has been lots of Jews in our industry. My dad00:55:00really can speak to them much better than I can, you know, people that are more his peers, like a Bill Samuels, Bill Goldring, um, who, um--he can talk to you a lot about Bill. Bill, um, is from New Orleans and started as a distributor, owned a distributorship down there and then started his own, um, set of brands, so he had two different companies. And they now own Fireball and Buffalo Trace. Um, and he's been incredibly philanthropic, incredibly philanthropic, and very, very successful, and has been a peer of my dad's for, you know, forty-plus years. Um, and then, the Chaplin family, who, um, are the--uh, and the Glazer family, who both own Southern Wine and Spirits and Glazer's Distributing, which are now merging--are the country's two largest, um, distributors whole--at the wholesale tier, are both run by Jewish families.
FERNHEIMER: Um-hm, Um-hm.
LATTS: And the Glazer's organization is over a hundred years old--00:56:00
LATTS: --and the Southern Wine and Spirits organization is not as old, but it'sstill run by a father and so--original father and son. Um, and, and all of these people have been incredibly philanthropic in Texas and in Florida where their companies are, are headquartered. Um, so they are--and--and, you know, there--there are a lot of Jewish families that have been in this business, and my dad can really speak to the why of that probably a little bit more than I can. I've never totally understood it.
FERNHEIMER: Um-hm. Um, yeah, in our--in our research, we keep uncovering theseinteresting little tidbits of women in the history of spirits, and one of them, um, is Maria the Jewess, an ancient alchemist who is credited with inventing the first alembic still. I wonder if you have come across any interesting facts about women in spirits that you've discovered over the years or anything you'd like to share.
LATTS: I don't think so.
LATTS: I don't think so.
FERNHEIMER: Um, switching gears a little bit--
FERNHEIMER: --what was it about the word "larceny" that caught--LATTS: Oh.
FERNHEIMER: --your imagination for the name of the spirit?
LATTS: Right. Well, Larry Kass actually created the name Larceny. Um, so thestory of when we were creating that brand goes that, we, you know, we have Evan Williams, who is Kentucky's first distiller, and we have Elijah Craig, who is actually the father of bourbon. He's the first person to--to--to discover the concept of charring the barrels. And as my brother said, we should not be creating a brand about another dead guy. Um, so we were looking for a more innovative name. We also didn't really want to do another place. Um, there were many brands that were doing places, um, whether, you know, after a river or a creek or something like that. So we were trying to find names, and the brand is based on John Fitzgerald, and John Fitzgerald most people think was a distiller. We ha--it was based on a brand we already had called, um, Old Fitz. 00:58:00
LATTS: Um, John Fitzgerald was not a distiller. He was actually a governmenttax, um, agent, who--as the story goes, he would go into all the distilleries--all the warehouses, rather, and, um, make sure all the taxes had been paid on the aging--on the aging bourbon. And the legend has that that he had very fine taste and would sample a little along the way.
FERNHEIMER: A little?
LATTS: And hence came the name Larceny.
FERNHEIMER: Wow, that's a great story.
LATTS: Yeah. Yeah.
FERNHEIMER: Um, so what about--can you foresee or imagine any women who get tobe part of a brand, or is--do you think a market --
LATTS: Oh, a brand name. Well, right--
FERNHEIMER: --will support the--yeah.
LATTS: --well, that's an interesting question in the bourbon world. Maybe. Um,you know, we have, um, our--one of our aged spice--or one of our spiced rums is called Blackheart, and we did that specifically because there was Captain Morgan. There was Admiral Nelson, um, and these were the go-to spiced 00:59:00rum brands. And we said, "There's no female pirates, and there were nam--whose names are on a rum, and there were lots of female pirates." So that is how we created the Blackheart character, who is full of tempta--she tempted the sailors on the seas, and, um, her rum tempts those who will try her, because it's a high-proof spiced rum, and the brand has been really, really terrific.
FERNHEIMER: And when--and when did that come out?
LATTS: In 2010.
FERNHEIMER: OK, so fairly recently.
LATTS: Yeah, Um-hm, Um-hm, yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: So it's not without--it's not outside of the range of--
LATTS: No, it's not. It could be, could be.
LATTS: Could be, yeah. I'm sure we--we could do our homework and figure outsomebody who was part of a great story.
FERNHEIMER: Well, we're--we're happy to help in that regard.
LATTS: Oh, cool, yeah.
LATTS: If only we had enough whiskey to invent a new brand.
FERNHEIMER: --(laughs)-- Right.
LATTS: Then--then we would be investigating all the way, um, but right now,we're using every drop of whiskey that we have on our current brands. 01:00:00
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. One of the things that your dad mentioned as kind of hisproudest moment, um, uh, in the industry was actually bringing you and your brother--
LATTS: Yes, he says that. Is it okay if I get some water--FERNHEIMER: --and yourhusband back in. Yeah, please do. Um, so I wonder what you--you know, you still have much of your career ahead of you--
FERNHEIMER: --but looking back, if there's something that you are most proud ofat this moment or if there's a goal that you have that you're most excited about trying to realize.
LATTS: Well, so many things. The company and the marketing at Heaven Hillchanged so much. Marketing and Heaven Hill have changed so much, um, in the fifteen years I've been here, um, so there's a couple things. Um, one was the creation of Pama, our pomegranate liqueur.
LATTS: Um, that was really my inspiration, and I always say it wa--we were atthe right place at the right time, and I saw POM Wonderful on the grocery store shelves out in Bardstown. I knew this was more than a fad, and so we 01:01:00were the first pomegranate liqueur to launch, and we launched at a time when, um, pr--you know, long before the recession, um, in two-thousand--late 2005, um, when premium liqueurs were very popular. People were still drinking lots of flavored martinis, pomegranate martinis, pomegranate margaritas, um, pomegranate in champagne, and so we launched Pama as the first pomegranate liqueur, and, you know, we created the name, the package, the taste profile, the marketing plan, the rollout plan, um, and it was immediately successful and, you know, has created a--a--a lot of value for the company, you know, just because of an idea and an inspiration. So that was a pretty cool early career, um, project, and then I'm really proud of all the things that we accomplish in marketing. Um, you know, when I started fifteen years ago, we had, like, four or five people, and now we have more than thirty-five. 01:02:00
LATTS: And, um, we have an in-house agency that we've created. Um, we have anin-house events team, in-house communications team, so--so none of these things existed, and it's all been--seeing the vision of the type of work that we were evolving to, the work we do and the brands that we have, have grown so much, and the types of marketing we're doing, it is just so much more involved and intense and so much more sophisticated. And a lot of it has been driven by an incredible increase in the amount of analysis that our marketing people do. You know, when we're looking for marketing people, I'm not necessarily looking for creative people. We're looking for smart, analytical business people who can understand the drivers of a brand, where the brand fits, and where the--what potential the brand has. And, um, we work with outside agencies to find the creative ideas and the partnerships and bring all those business strategies and 01:03:00opportunities to life, and this whole evolution from a marketing department that was largely doing in-store collateral point of sale to doing business analysis and strategy and marketing plan opportunity assessment and, um, finding the right partners throughout the country to help us do that is pretty rewarding, pretty great. So it's really just being able to see the need and continual evolution and changes that we need to--to undergo to meet the demands of our brands and the marketplace and consumers today, um, so pretty proud of all that.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. What about the future? Uh, you talked about--
LATTS: Right, I know.
FERNHEIMER: --your children, um, so I know there's a son and a daughter in the mix--
LATTS: Yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --and sh--Lindsay (??), I believe.
LATTS: Lindsay is the younger one. She's thirteen, and Jake is almost sixteen.Um, well, that's a long, long future away. Um, in the short future, I worry--I mean, I'm forty-five, and, you know, the fact that we now have at least a handful of people who work for me who were not born when I graduated 01:04:00from high school is very concerning to me, and as a personal issue. You know, in this industry, you have to be able to stay young and relevant, and, um, I don't want anybody around thinking that I don't have the--the youth or the mentality of the consumer today, uh, to do this job, quite honestly. Um, so I work really hard to make sure I stay open-minded to changing consumers because I'm not the consumer. You know, mo--oftentimes, our consumer is twenty-five to forty-five, and I'm like, "I'm not even barely in that target audience anymore." So that's an important thing for the future for me, is how I keep myself relevant in my role, knowing what we're doing. You know, so surrounding myself with the right team and the right partners, um, to do that, because it's always easier to--to market to yourself, um, but being able to understand how to market to 01:05:00someone who is not like you, has different values, different mindsets, different interests and tastes, you have to be really keen on that. Um, so that's my first future priority. Um, long-term, you know, as far as our kids--you know, if you ask my daughter, she would say she wants to, uh, work here for sure, so we'll see. We're just trying to get her into eighth grade at this point. No, she, um--you know, she certainly--our--our kids are keenly aware and interested in everything that goes on here. You know, my son was at a bar mitzvah at one of the hotels in town and went up and checked out the bar to see if they had any of our brands--
LATSS: --and are incredibly proud of what we do. Um, and, you know, they have itdouble, because both my husband and I are--are bringing it home, and they are all in. And the really cool thing is the people that work for me whose kids are so into it. Like, apparently, um, one of the--the ten-year-olds who works for, um, the --the manager in charge of all of our whiskeys, a Jim Beam 01:06:00commercial came on TV a couple weeks ago, and he was like, "Uh, turn that off." And, um, Susan, who works for me, said, "Well, why?" He said, "They're acting like that's so old, and it's not even four years old." --(laughs)-- So we--we're just tickled by these stories all the time, so it really is a family thing. We try and instill that in--in our team here, um, which is really fun. So it's not just our family, but it's all of our team's families.
So, anyway, the next generation beyond, you know, it's--it's a long ways off.You know, it would be awesome if--if, um--if anybody joins the business. Um, they're still so young, it's hard to say. Our son wants to be a Broadway actor. Um, I don't think he will work at the business if he does not become a Broadway actor, which I am not holding my breath about. I think he will probably do something in the arts. Um, his--from a very young age, he's been very passionate, um, in all things artistic, so, um, I don't know that 01:07:00this would be the right fit, um, but who knows. People change a lot, you know, over their--over their life.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. You talked so much about the--the intertwining of family andbusiness, and--and it's clear from the stories that you told how much Jewishness was part of that family--of family gatherings and continues to be. Are there ways that you see those values in--infiltrating--that's maybe not the right word--LATTS: Um-hm.
FERNHEIMER: --but influencing, um, the way--
FERNHEIMER: --that you--
FERNHEIMER: --interact and your husband and your brother and your father in the business?
LATTS: Yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: Can you talk a little bit about that?
LATTS: Well, a couple things. I mean, I think family values are--are sucha--family and closeness to family are--are inherently Jewish values, um, and that's certainly been a part of my growing up, and we've been able to give that to our kids as well. You know, they have cousins here, and we always are together and make a point to be together for birthdays, you know--not just the Jewish events, but birthdays and other things. But, um--so 01:08:00that--that--that's a key part of it, that--that feeling of family, and then hard work, you know. Education is such an important Jewish value, and we place a very high value on education, both on our kids and here at Heaven Hill, the, uh, concepts of a continuous education and continuous improving and not just resting on our laurels but wanting to--to continue to educate yourself. Um, and then, the second piece of that is hard work, just being passionate, being focused, taking things seriously, um, not being entitled to anything, and--and just working hard, um, at what you're doing, I think, are probably the three biggest values--family, education, hard work--that we bring to our fam--that we focus on with our families and our Heaven Hill family. Um, but those--those values are not exclusive to the Jewish religion by any means, and, you know, most of the folks that we have here who work with us are actually Catholic. Um, you know, we have such a Catholic community here in --in--in, um, Louisville, and, 01:09:00um, you know, it's--uh, that's a fun part of the role, too, that they have learned so much about Judaism. You know, they've been to the bat and bar mitzvahs. They've come to various weddings. We go to their weddings. Um, and--and there's a real respect for learning each other's cultures and whatnot, so, um, that--that's a--that's a neat aspect of--of being here in Kentucky versus if we were located in a Chicago or New York. Um, we wouldn't have quite that sharing of cultures perhaps, um, because we are the minority, um, here, so that--that's a fun thing to do, to share those Jewish values.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. One--one thing that I noticed, um, coming through the bourbonheritage, um, experience, I know, is if you look up in the tasting rooms that there are stars--
LATTS: Um-hm, Um-hm, Um-hm.
FERNHEIMER: --in the beams. And we heard your father tell us a little bit abouthow that was a bit of a surprise to him.LATTS: Yeah, Um-hm.
FERNHEIMER: Um, talk to me about the ki--the kind of--the--the nuance ofthose--of that star in the beams and-- 01:10:00
LATTS: Well, as my dad said, it was--it was not something we directed, and mydad's cousin Harry was really involved wi--in the creation of the visitors center. So whether he guided them to do that, I don't know. Um, but I do remember being there at the opening of it and seeing it and being like, "Oh, that's really cool. You know, that--that's neat." That--that was a great idea, whether it was just subtly done by the architect, and he didn't--and it wasn't told to anybody. That's really cool if that happened, that the architect just knew to include something like that, um, or if Harry, my dad's cousin, had guided it, I think, is a neat thing, and I don't know that we all would have thought to do it, but it was--Harry would have for sure, so--
LATTS: --it is a nice touch.
FERNHEIMER: And I--I know it's not--or at least, when I went through the tour,it wasn't currently par--it wasn't pointed out.
LATTS: I think they do point it out. They used to point it out. Um--
FERNHEIMER: Um-hm. Okay, I don't want to get anyone in trouble then.
LATTS: --yeah, they didn't point it out? Yeah, I--I--I haven't been on the tourin a--in a long time, but I kind of feel like they used to point it 01:11:00out, and everybody looked up--
FERNHEIMER: Yeah, yeah.
LATTS: --and, yeah--well, I'll follow up on that. --(laughs)--
FERNHEIMER: Yeah, well, I just wondered, you know. Talking about, you know, howmuch--obviously, it's a very important part of the family and--and your family, and--and talking about the ways that it does integrate or not with the story of Heaven Hill, of--of the business and--
FERNHEIMER: --and, um, I wonder if you can talk to me a little bit about howit--it figured. I mean, we know that little bit about how it--it kind of came as a surprise in the beams, but in terms of shaping the way the tour--the story is told, um, both you and your dad emphasizing, you know, there were a lot of Jewish families in the business. But when you hear the stories or you go to distillery to distillery, you don't--you don't always hear that part of the story. I don't--and talk to me about that or--
FERNHEIMER: --as a marketing person.
LATTS: Well, I think it was a bigger part of the story with the firstgeneration, when it was these five Jewish brothers all part of one 01:12:00family, and the notion of coming into Louisville and, um, having the grandparents here was--it was just a very traditional Jewish family entrepreneurial story, and the sons each having their role. And today, it's really just continued on from how my dad and Allan and I and Andy, my brother, would behave in our lives. I wouldn't say it--
LATTS: --on a day-to-day basis is consciously guiding what we're doing per se.Um, but, you know, our Judaism is ingrained in us, so that's who we are, so I'm sure part of what we bring to work every day is affected and impacted by that, but it's a bit hard for me to conjure up specifically what those things would be.
FERNHEIMER: Um-hm. Yeah. So I've--I have two more questions for you01:13:00if you would--would humor me. One is one that, um, I usually end an interview with, but I have an extra bonus question for you.
FERNHEIMER: And that's just--is there anything that I haven't asked you about orif there are stories that you want to share and make sure they get in the record or something I missed, um, that you think is really important for us to know, uh, please feel free to add.
LATTS: Um, I don't think so, other than, you know, not very many familybusinesses are succ--so successful through a third generation, um, and we're really proud that we are and that it happens to be a Jewish family business. Um, and we're not going anywhere, and, you know, despite me feeling old at age forty-five and as a marketing person in this industry, we're not going anywhere, and, you know, hopefully we have many years left ahead of the third generation. And--and my brother has three daughters, so, um, whether it be the daughters who rise to the occasion now, given that we have--four of the five next 01:14:00generation grandkids are--are female and--among us who are currently working here--or their spouses. You know, spouses work well too. Um, we, you know, we--we--we have every hope that this business is going to have a continuation for many, many years to come, and we're--you know, we're fiercely independent, and, um, we're doing all the right things today to sustain its viability for a long time ahead, so that's a big focus of what we do. Um, we run it, uh, prudent--prudently without hindering ideas and growth potential, um, but we're not doing wild, crazy things, um, to jeopardize the financial health of the company. But we're not also just, like, sitting and resting and milking the business by any means, so, um, we've got some pretty bright people around the table not just within the family but the rest of our leadership team, so we're really excited about the future.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Well, one of those future--I know women tend to be01:15:00one of the markets that seems to be growing--
FERNHEIMER: --for bourbon. So even though you--you seem--
LATTS: Yeah, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: --I don't know. I guess there is--the age--the age brackets of thetarget market group, but that--
FERNHEIMER: --seems to be a new one.
FERNHEIMER: Um, uh, are there ways that you--you're bringing specific expertiseor that you're working--
FERNHEIMER: --with the company to develop that?
LATTS: Yeah, yeah. Um, well, it has just been amazing how women are--aredrinking more and more whiskey, and I think some of--a couple things have--have driven that. One, um, the introduction of flavored whiskeys has been a great entry point. You know, we have our Evan Williams honey and peach and--and cinnamon, which is now Evan Williams Fire, um, and cherry. And I think this has been a nice entry point, um, for women. Um, two, bourbon cocktails are everywhere--
LATTS: --and drinking a bourbon cocktail is a lot more approachable thandrinking sh--neat bourbon or bourbon on the rocks. So there's just 01:16:00more and more access ways for women to feel comfortable drinking whiskey. I was just at something a few weeks ago that said, you know, five or ten years ago, if a woman was drinking bourbon, you were like, "What's wrong with that woman? Who does she think she is, drinking bourbon?" And so, now, it's--it's just absolutely become not only acceptable but popular for women to be consuming, um, bourbon in all sorts of varieties, and these are great entry points to developing the taste appeal to then drinking it in--I don't want to say more "hardcore" ways, um, but, um, in--in, um--you know, in--in more of a neat or just with water type fashion. So, um, I think the whole industry is really doing more and more, um, to cultivate that, you know, with--like so many trends, it starts off with aficionados, and then it filters down, and we're in that place right now, which is really great. We're a little worried of b--of the category becoming oversaturated, because now you're starting to see, you know, 01:17:00bourbon flavors at Starbucks or bourbon-flavored doughnuts, and, you know, when something becomes everywhere, totally ubiquitous, then oftentimes it can become not an in thing anymore.
LATTS: Um, so we're a little worried about that, um, because there's--butthere's so much authenticity and so much romance and artistry and amazing taste, of course, um, to bourbon that we--we're--we're--we're optimistic that, um, this will--it will be a taste profile that will continue for a long time.
FERNHEIMER: And as that continues forward--and I keep thinking about those fouryoung women who may or may not choose to enter the family business--
FERNHEIMER: --uh, is there anything that you hope might change for them? Um--
LATTS: More women. You know, more women in--in, um--with our--in ourdistributors, because, you know, our customers, we sell to the distributor, who then sells to bars and restaurants and retail stores. And having more women at that tier would just make it that much more, um, dynamic and fun and 01:18:00diverse, not--and not just women, diversity of all types. I mean, it's very white male-dominated, um, so--so that leadership reflecting more, um, the consumer and the world today, I think, would just make it that much more dynamic. Um, but, you know, in my day-to-day role in marketing here, I've got lots and lots of women, so it's only--it's only a concept when I'm out and about, um, in--you know, at conferences and sales meetings and those sorts of things. So, um, I think we're setting it up nicely for these young ladies to want to come back and join us. We like to say we don't sell encyclopedias. You know, it's--it's a lot of fun. It's a lot of fun--
LATTS: --and, um, you know, working for a family business is just so prideful,and there's--it--it's just a great thing. It's--it's such a special thing. I'm so fortunate to have this opportunity.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Well, I--I'm really grateful for having had the01:19:00opportunity to talk with you today.
FERNHEIMER: I really appreciate you taking the time, and I want to respect that.
LATTS: Yeah, thank you.
FERNHEIMER: There's one--
FERNHEIMER: --last little thing, as a marketing person, that I want you to takea look at, which is, um--and--and you're not on the spot. I've asked--
LATTS: This is the bonus question?
FERNHEIMER: --this is the bonus question. Um, J.T. and I were digging around inthe archives at Adath Israel in the fall in preparation for these interviews, and, of course, in doing research for the project.
LATTS: You found a picture of--my confirmation picture.
FERNHEIMER: No, I'm sad to say that was not--
LATTS: With '80s permed hair. Yeah, okay.
FERNHEIMER: --oh, we'll be on the lookout next time--trip.
LATTS: No, all right. Yeah.
FERNHEIMER: Um, we found this really unusual image, um, with BernheimDistribution. And I know it's not Heaven Hill, but, as a marketing person, it looked to us like it--it--we thought it might be advertising.
FERNHEIMER: And we weren't sure, and I just want you to take a look and kind oftell me what you see and what you think--
LATTS: Prosperity Whiskey?
FERNHEIMER: --what it might mean about the market or if it was a marketing kindof image. And it's--it's not a pop quiz. We're genuinely-- 01:20:00
LATTS: Right, right, right.
FERNHEIMER: --solicitating--"solicitating," oh, there's a good word.
F1: There's a new word.
FERNHEIMER: Uh, your expert opinion.
LATTS: Huh. Well, they seem to be--this is--it kind of reflects, like, how somemarketing for cognacs today would be, showing, um, African Americans enjoying a special moment, uh, an important moment in their life. This looks like it's a wedding. Um, and Prosperity Whiskey is a part of the celebration because at any momentous occasions among African Americans, they would be, of course, wanting to consume Prosperity Whiskey.
LATTS: It's not dissimilar to how many, um, cognacs, brandies are marketed today.
LATTS: I definitely think it's an ad, for sure, for sure. It's cool.
FERNHEIMER: And so, do you know of--
LATTS: It's really cool.
FERNHEIMER: --do you know of anyone else who is sort of targeting AfricanAmerican populations with the selling of whiskey? 01:21:00
FERNHEIMER: Historically or now?
LATTS: I don't. I don't. You know, bourbon has never historically been a bigAfrican American, um, drink. You know, they have always been much more, um, brandy and cognac. Um, gin has been very popular among African Americans, and still, today, the African American, um, segment is under indexes in consumption of--of bourbon and whiskey, although, like with all segments, it's growing. Um, but that's pretty cool, yeah.
FERNHEIMER: Yeah. Well, thank you again.
LATTS: Yeah, thank you.
FERNHEIMER: I really appreciate your time today.
LATTS: Good, yeah, absolutely, absolutely.
FERNHEIMER: And I hope--
LATTS: Oh, I have to get unrigged here.
[End of interview]