Joe Short

CEO/Creative Engineer

Joe grew up in Rapid City and graduated from Kalkaska High School.  He began working in the hospitality industry at a young age as a waiter at the Dockside on Torch Lake.  Joe began homebrewing while attending Western Michigan University.  After beginning his professional brewing career with stints at the former Traverse Brewing Company in Elk Rapids, the former Michigan Brewing Company in Webberville and the former Jackson Brewing Company (later Zig’s Kettle and Brew), Joe decided to return to northern Michigan and start his own brewery. Since then, Joe has worked every position at Short’s.  Don’t be surprised if you stop by our pub and find him pouring beers and taking orders.  Behind the scenes, however, Joe spearheads the creative process, any construction or expansion projects, marketing, special events and overall direction of the company.   Joe is married to Leah Short, and they have two sons.

Leah Short

Owner and Visionary

Leah is from out west.  After years of working and playing hard in the mountains, she graduated from college and was prepared for a career path outside of the hospitality industry. But first, she decided to spend one last summer in northern Michigan.  As her lifelong friend, Joe Short, had recently opened a microbrewery in Bellaire, Leah hit him up for a summer job. The rest is history. Well, almost.  It is worth noting that during a whirlwind trip out east to visit Dogfish Head and see several Ween concerts, Joe convinced Leah to stay in northern Michigan. Upon her return to the pub, Leah created our delicious Ween-inspired food menu.  Through countless hours working in the deli, Leah also established the high standards of our gourmet deli operation.  Although Leah still misses the rugged, mountainous terrain of the west, she has also learned to love the beautiful lakes and woods of northern Michigan.  Leah takes great pride in the excellent food, beverages and service that our pub continues to offer its patrons.

Scott Newman-Bale

Partner/Business Development

Scott moved to the U.S. from England in 1999 after a successful career as a Database designer for EA Sports.  While attending college at Michigan State University, Joe and Scott met through a mutual friend. Scott’s background in business and real estate has been a tremendous asset to Short’s, earning him the nickname “The Magician.”  While Joe’s focus was directed towards “the next big thing to excite craft beer fans in Michigan,” Scott was the guy who found a way to fund such projects and make them financially viable.  In this way, Scott came on board at Short’s as a silent partner.  By 2007, Short’s had grown to a point where it required Scott’s attention full time.  In addition to his work at Short’s, Scott has also become a major advocate for craft brewers throughout the nation.  He currently serves as Treasurer of the Michigan Brewers Guild and has travelled throughout the U.S. advocating for craft breweries and brewers.  When he isn’t working, Scott enjoys calling soccer “football” and tons of other English things like that.  Scott resides in Wixom, Michigan with his wife, Judy, and two daughters.

Tony Hansen

Head Brewer

Tony met Joe Short while attending a homebrew club meeting at the pub in late 2006. At that time, Tony was cooking at Boone’s Long Lake Inn while experimenting with homebrewing, biofuel production and organic farming.   Joe expressed an inspiring vision of what brewing could be and the need for help in the brewery. During one of the homebrew club meetings, Joe offered Tony a part-time job as a pub brewer. In 2007, as Short’s started to experience rapid growth, Joe began focusing on expansion and Tony’s role quickly transformed into a lead brewer position at the pub in Bellaire. In 2009, when the expansion was complete, Tony moved over to the production facility.  Tony manages production operations in Elk Rapids and oversees pub production along with R&D brewing.  Today, Tony designs the beer, the branding and the names for many of our beers.

Matt Drake


Matt is a lawyer with a background in creative writing who began making regular trips to Short’s pub after drinking a Huma Lupa Licious on tap downstate.  After falling in love with Short’s, Matt began volunteering his time in any capacity possible to help the mission. When Leah introduced Matt to Joe, a lifelong friendship and working relationship was forged.  Matt now manages several departments at Short’s, including creative marketing, human resources, PR, special events and legal.  Matt also plays a big role in the overall company direction. Matt’s nickname is “the Dr.” because he’s responsible for fixing anything that goes wrong and keeping everybody happy and healthy.

Jon Wojtowicz

Head of Beer Liberation and Field Representation

Jon, or “Woj,” was originally from the suburbs of Chicago and first started coming to Michigan with his family for summer vacations.  Upon graduating high school Jon enrolled in Western Michigan University to pursue a degree in Earth Science Education and Environmental Science.  This is where he first met Joe Short through some mutual friends and also tried some of the earliest versions of “Short’s” brew.  After graduation Jon decided he wanted to live in Northern Michigan and already had some friends there who happened to be opening a brewery.

Getting established in northern Michigan was not easy, jobs were few and far between, with the most readily available ones being in the hospitality industry.  Over the next few years, Jon honed his skills in all aspects of the restaurant industry particularly as a chef. Then in the winter of 2007, Jon was approached by his now good friend Joe about coming to work for him at his brewery.

Brian Beckwith


Born and raised in Traverse City, Brian began making routine pilgrimages to Short’s during its first year of operations. He even began volunteering at Short’s events to display his support for the rapidly growing company. Little did he think that years later, his love of craft beer and number crunching would intersect and lead him to the position of CFO at his favorite brewery. Brian brings a unique perspective to the finance department at Short’s, as he is both a CPA and attorney, and has practiced in both arenas. Being one of the newer members of the Short’s team, Brian is tasked with budgeting, forecasting, tax compliance, financial reporting, developing and maintaining internal controls, and financial strategic planning. He is known around the office as “Bowtie Brian” due to his love of that Old World fashion piece. Brian is a board member of the following local organizations: Grand Traverse-Leelanau-Antrim Bar Association, Traverse Area Girls Softball, Botanical Garden Society, Gladhander and Bike-In TC. He lives in Traverse City with his wife, Bridgett, and two children: Jack and Izzy.

Kathleen Chimko

Pub General Manager

Kathleen received a degree in Hospitality Business from Michigan State University.  She spent a summer at Short’s while trying to figure out what she wanted to do for the rest of her life. She forgot to go home at the end of the summer and then climbed the ropes all the way up to General Manager. When she is not managing our pub operation, you will most likely find her on Lake Bellaire captaining her boat the S.S. Girlfriend with her dog Wally (best dog ever) and her biggest fans, her family.

Tyler Glaze

Quality Manager

Tyler studied at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo as a Microbiology/Biochemistry Undergraduate student and escaped before graduation to explore the United States and try all of its beer. By sheer luck, Tyler landed in a seat at the Bellaire Pub and was hired shortly after for a summer internship. Soon, he found himself managing the Quality Department at Short’s and, while working at Short’s, attended the prestigious University of California, Davis Extension, Master Brewer’s Program where he learned the science and engineering behind the beer we all love. Shortly after, Tyler received his Diploma in Brewing from the Institute of Brewing and Distilling, London, U.K. Tyler lives in Elk Rapids with a large fridge full of Huma Lupa Licious.

Pub Staff

Amanda Crambell


Cameron Knight


Cassandra Poniatoski

Deli Staff

Chelsea Holz


Dan Argyle

Deli Staff

Danielle Klersy

Deli Staff

Eric Tranchell


Erin Kuethe

Assistant General Manager

Gerard Knoph

Pub Manager

Gillian Nevarez


Jack Travis

Deli Staff

James Oswald

Deli Supervisor/Tournaut

Jason Page


Jessie Burch


Jodie Balhorn


KC Pavlichek

Deli Staff

Luke Meredith


Luke Whitley

Pub Brewer

Mark Macnaughton


Matt Blanchfield


Merissa Blata


Nate Morland


Rhiannon Zeeff


Rob Lewis

Pub Manager

Ruth Fleischman


Ryan Hale

Head Pub Brewer

Ryan Luce

Deli Supervisor/Tournaut

Scott Grulke


Stefanie Drake

Pub Manager

Tim Otis


Elk Rapids Staff

Aaron Smith


Al Russell


Amber Williamson

Human Resources Specialist

Curt Guntzviller


Emily Sullivan

Administrative Assistant

Erik Anderson


Erin Reicha

Financial Administrative Assistant

Forrest Moline

Cellar Manager

Jack Archiable


Jessica Bond

Human Resources Assistant

John Greiner


Karen Shaw

Administrative Assistant

Kyle Lee

Production Administrative Assistant

Leslie Nagy

Quality Assurance Assistant

Matt Hunter


Mike Baltzell


Mike McQuiston


Nate Rook

Filler Operator

Rachel Brege


Ryan Urbin


Sam Decamp

QC/QA Analyst

Sarah Moir

Administrative Assistant

Sean Niemisto


Steve Ison

Packaging/Warehouse Leader

Tyler Krych


Zach Williams


Other Team Players

Bob Underhill


Brian Brown

IT Director

Bridgett Beckwith

Director of Marketing

Chris Clore

Project Manager

Dan Rollins


David Truax

Festival and Events

Gillian Cobb

Communication Specialist

Jesse Den Herder

Art Director

Josh Lockman

IT Technician

Kendal Fifield

Festival & Events

Kody Koerber


Laura Stegmeyer

Junior Graphic Designer

Mark Goethell

Multi-Media Specialist

Nicholas Fairbanks


Sarah Bozarth

Festival & Events

Tim Reicha

Festival & Event Director

Beer Liberator Team

Brian Talpos

Beer Liberator

Eric Haycock

Beer Liberator

Pauline Knighton

Beer Liberator

Rachel Payne

Beer Liberator

Sean Cudahy

Beer Liberator

Short's Mart

Bethany Springsdorf

Assistant Merchandiser

Nick Lockman

Assistant Merchandiser

Stefanie Gildersleeve

Assistant Merchandiser

Stephanie Kenny

Merchandise Manager

Tani Carl

Sales Associate