[Above: Hausner, right, back in early 2008, with Jim Koch while at a national conference]
(Boston, MA) – By now, you have heard about Boston Beer Co. suing Anchor Brewing and the young man, Judd Hausner, that Anchor is trying to employ over an alleged breach of a non-compete agreement. You’ve read Boston Beer’s public statement and Anchor Brewing’s public statement so why not add Judd Hausner’s statement to the mix? Here is a Facebook note from Hausner on the whole ordeal…
Dear Friends and Family,
Thanks for all the support in relation to my recent legal situation with the Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams). I wanted you guys to hear the story from me, rather than the business journals and blogs.
I’m being sued by my former employer, the Boston Beer Company, or as most of you know them, Sam Adams. An employment agreement that they required me to sign back when I got an entry-level sales representative job in the fall semester of my senior year of college contained a non-compete clause which attempts to prevent me from working for another brewery.
After 4+ years of hard work, 2 promotions and 2 relocations for the company, I made the decision to make a career move, and go to work for Anchor Brewing Company based here in San Francisco. I told my boss at Boston Beer about Anchor and gave her my two weeks’ notice. She did not tell me that I was prohibited by contract from working for Anchor, Boston Beer allowed me to work the last two weeks and to help them gear up for a seamless transition to the next sales guy that came in, which I did. By their actions, I never imagined there was an issue. It seemed like they realized I was just a 26 year old kid trying to build a career.
Hence, my surprise that Boston Beer has decided to sue me. And sue me in Massachusetts. This means that somehow, I have to defend myself 3,000 miles away from where I have lived and worked for the past 3+ years for them. I am also distressed that they launched a simultaneous attack on Anchor Brewing Company, trying to prevent them from hiring me and leaving me unemployed.
It is simply ridiculous to think that in my role with Anchor, a company 20 times smaller than Sam Adams, that I could have some “special trade secrets” that could negatively affect Sam Adams. I find it somewhat absurd that Boston Beer claims that I have any information that could negatively harm them. I do not. Also, in Anchor’s employment letter they specifically said they were not interested in any proprietary information I may have. Since joining Anchor, they certainly haven’t indicated anything different
I appreciate all the support from the craft beer community. I have read the blogs, and the support out there is amazing. Many current Sam Adams employees have called me extending their support as well.
I am extremely grateful for Anchor’s response to this lawsuit and their loyalty to me. Especially considering that I only just met Keith Greggor, Owner and CEO, for the first time last Monday, and then only for 10 minutes. Since we first heard about the lawsuit in the media, they have been nothing but incredibly supportive.
I can’t say I really understand the legal process here. Once I heard the news, my biggest concern was figuring out how on earth I could afford legal counsel in San Francisco and Massachusetts, simultaneously and in a hurry.
Fortunately, Anchor has put their attorney’s arm around me which has been a huge relief. I can’t believe how well Anchor has treated and invested in an employee of only two days. Anchor could have easily said sorry about the lawsuit and parted ways with me. Instead, they are spending thousands of dollars to defend their right to hire me. They seem to be outraged by Boston Beer’s action and have told me that across the beverage alcohol world, they have never heard of anyone attempting to do this to someone at my level.
I had heard great things about working at Anchor, and their respect for their employees. Now I’m seeing it first hand and I know I made the right decision to work there. As is customary in these situations, I am now on paid leave and I am sitting on the sidelines not working until this issue is resolved. To continue to pay my salary during this process again shows just how supportive they are of their employees. Even the ones with only two days on the job!
Thanks to Keith and Anchor, hopefully I can get back to work soon and put this all behind us. Thanks again for the support, and I’ll keep you posted on progress.