Carl Nolen

“It’s all about the beer!”

Carl Nolen’s beer career started behind the wheel of a beer truck, delivering kegs to bars and restaurants along State Street in Madison, Wisconsin. Back then, it was all about the beer. Which, Carl notes, is still the mantra today. “A lot about the industry has changed, but if you have a great product, brew it and they will come!” 

That philosophy has been the basis for Carl’s 30+ year career in Wisconsin’s beer industry — much of it spent at the executive level, where he helped spur development of iconic beer labels and remarkable growth in revenue. But Carl gives all the credit to the people around him. “If I’ve done one thing consistently right through the years, it’s been building a strong team around me. Brewmasters, distributors, store and tavern owners, they’re more than my partners; they’re my friends.” 

That tradition of teamwork continues at Wisconsin Brewing Company. Carl has partnered with his brother Mark and long-time friend Kirby Nelson, a trio he refers to as “a dream team with a dream opportunity.” A Wisconsin native with deep roots, Carl is determined to honor the state’s brewing heritage while building on it:

“We always remember where we’ve been, and where we came from. Which isn’t difficult, because it’s right here.”