Northern Michigan in Focus: Right Brain Brewery
All Russell Springsteen wanted to do 11 years ago was brew beer and he has grown beyond his expectations with Right Brain Brewery.
Overwhelming? Yes. But it’s provided him with a ‘good’ problem.
Eddie Sims, an employee with a closed head injury, said, “I’ve been wanting a job at the Right Brain Brewery for a long time. I love it here.”
Springsteen says they need employees, but it is difficult to find people in Northern Michigan that are willing to do manufacturing or producing. He has always said that if he were to start a local business that he would give back to the community and he has done so by employing locals with disabilities.
Springsteen says, “They have different abilities, or disabilities, but as one said don’t define me by your disabilities.”
They want to be productive members of society and Springsteen is happy to give them the opportunity. He says, “They’re reliable, they’re loyal. They show up on time and want to stay.”
Employee Jesse Kelly, who is dyslexic, says about Springsteen, “The boss is actually really amazing. He’s always been there when I’ve had a situation arise. He’s always there if anybody back here is having a bad day. He’s always there for everybody and that’s always great. A lot of people don’t have that is like an actual boss so that’s like something different.”
With our society spinning out of control lately, maybe it is time to slow down and try to truly understand each other.
Springsteen says, “We bring them in and our staff and embraces them. That’s our culture here. We treat them with respect and dignity and they contribute.”
Right Brain Brewery has won a lot of awards for their beer. In March, Springsteen won the 2019 Dr. Dawn Gallup Award for providing enhancement, awareness or employment for people with disabilities in order to promote and support full participation within the community.
Sims says, “I’m very thankful to have this job they’re just great people I just come here and I really enjoy it I’m just very, very happy.”
The culture at Right Brain Brewery is a special place to work and it’s not only because of their beer, but because of their culture.
Springsteen says, “We have one a few awards for beer but this one is more important though. This one has more meaning then a beer award. This is more community.”