The Company

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James Jefferson - Brewer and Distiller

James is a very knowledgeable and passionate brewer. His degree in microbiology gives his craft a firm scientific and theoretical foundation allowing him to cultivate the most flavor and yield from every batch of beer brewed and fermented for distillation into Brother Justus Single Malt. James also has many years’ experience working in a brewing supply store, so he knows the role the right equipment and technology can play in making elite craft spirits.


Megan Gibbs- Business Director

Megan is a decorated veteran and officer of the Iraq War who concluded her service with the rank of Major.  She has commanded bases and convoys, specializing in training up human resources to work at peak efficiency.  Megan received a full-ride to a top Minnesota MBA program and took a big pay-cut from her position at a Fortune 100 company to work at Brother Justus because she sees its great potential, and because she loves great whiskey.

 I met Phil through a mutual friend and asked him, half-jokingly, "Do you have a job for me?" Phil says, "I've seen your record of service and whatever job you want at Brother Justus, let's make it happen."  He invited me to the distillery Christmas party. I said I couldn't make it, because my mom was visiting. So they invited her too! They welcomed her like a member of the family. And for the first time in her life, she drank neat whiskey and loved it! That's when I knew: I'm in."  ~ Megan Welch


Phil Steger - Founder

Phil is the dreamer.  He's lived in the English Moors and a Trappist monastery, managed an organic farm and homeless shelter, led a Minnesota peace and justice organization, smuggled humanitarian supplies into Iraq before the war, and traveled the Middle East and Caucuses Mountains as part of missions to preserve ancient manuscripts threatened by armed conflict.  He first drank bad whiskey in college to test his pain tolerance.  Then he tasted great whiskey and has pursued it ever since.