Our Leadership Team

Culture Leaders

Cowbell Brewing is led by an experienced, disciplined and conscientious team. These are men and women with a broad scope of complementary skills, abilities and enthusiasm.


Steven Sparling

Founder, CEO & Culture Warrior

Steven is the former CEO of Sparling’s Propane. Steven served as Founding Chair, Ontario Propane Association, the Propane Industry Advisory Council and the Canadian Propane Association (Ottawa). Steven is an engaged advocate in support of rural economic development. He is past Vice Chair of the Huron County Economic Development Board and is current Chair of Campaign 14/19 in Blyth. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI.

David Sparling

VP & COO

David is the former COO of Sparling’s Propane. A people, service and technology leader, Sparling’s earned an unmatched 99% Customer Retention Rate and was recognized as, “One of the 50 Best Places to Work in Canada.” David holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Western University, London, ON. He is the past Principal at Emergency Services Training Centre, is an internationally published author in the subject of Emergency Response Management and is the past Chief of the Fire Department of North Huron.

Dave Clarke

CCO

Dave is a sales and leadership expert with a track record of success leading high-achieving teams. A bold visionary, Dave has over 20 years of sales and senior marketing management experience with beer and spirits companies including Bass, Diageo and Creemore Springs. Dave is a skilled team builder who is obsessed with quality and service. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK, and a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Nottingham Business School, Nottingham, UK.

Jim Newell

CFO

Jim is a corporate finance veteran, with over 30 years in senior leadership roles and extensive C-level experience with high growth Canadian companies. He is a promoter of change. Jim is a strategic thinker with strong leadership and effective team building skills and he has a proven record for strategic thinking and delivering results in dynamic, highly competitive markets. Jim is a graduate of Carlton University, Ottawa, ON, and is a CPA, CA.

Grant Sparling

VP & General Manager

Grant has come home to Blyth for this remarkable opportunity. He is a 2015 graduate of Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Government, and is a graduate Brewer from BrewLab, Sunderland, UK. At Dartmouth, Grant was Owner-Manager of ThirstD, an on-campus water delivery business and he was a two-team athlete. At 18 years of age, he was named one of Canada’s “Top Twenty Under 20" for co-invention of a non-invasive influenza vaccine (worldwide patents pending).

Alecia Anderson

Director, events

Alecia is a charismatic team member who obtained her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Degree in Drama in Education and Community at the University of Windsor, Windsor, ON. Her vibrant personality warms the hearts of everyone she meets. Before joining Cowbell, Alecia, or Ally as her fans call her, was the Morning Show Host and Promotions Director at 104.9 The Beach in Goderich, ON. Alecia has been a long-standing volunteer in the Huron County community since she was 12 years old.

Natasha Fritzley

Director, Business Development

Natasha is the former Director of Sales & Marketing at Global Spectrum with extensive Canadian experience, including Mattamy Athletic Centre, Toronto, ON, and Budweiser Gardens, London, ON. Natasha moved to Huron County in 2013 to accept the newly-created position of County Economic Development Manager, where she distinguished herself as an effective leader who understands that economic development demands disruption, courageous ideas and unprecedented collaboration and cooperation. Natasha is a graduate of Western University, London, ON.

Alex Lussier

Executive Chef, Cowbell Kitchen

Alex brings over 20 years leadership experience to the Cowbell Kitchen, including at remarkable Canadian restaurants and three Michelin Star properties in Europe. He is an award-winning Chef with degrees in Restaurant Management, Computer Science and Project Management. Alex is a hands-on, practical leader who believes in building partnerships with local producers, suppliers and his Team to create fresh, memorable, local farm-to-table Guest experiences.

Joel Mallard

Director, Sales

Joel has over 20 years experience across all aspects of sales, marketing and innovation, including over 13 years in leadership in the beverage alcohol industry. He was most recently Director for Beer, Ready-to-Drink and Wine at Diageo Canada. During his tenure, Joel earned multiple industry awards, including twice the prestigious LCBO Partner of the Year Award. He has been responsible for the successful launch and growth of several global brand extensions.

Stephen Rich

Brewmaster, Director, Brewing Operations

Stephen is a passionate, outspoken and innovative brewmaster, with a home brewing background. He has extensive experience, including Creemore Springs and The Beer Academy. Stephen is a Certified Cicerone, Prud’homme Beer Sommelier, Certified BJCP Beer Judge and he leads Cowbell’s fearless brewing team. He is a Bachelor of Commerce graduate of Ryerson University, Toronto, ON, appreciates muscle cars – and is a Star Wars junkie.

Genny Smith

Director, Communications

Genny is an enthusiastic community leader whose interest for economic development flourished while studying at Ryerson University, Toronto, ON. As an entrepreneur and a former elected official, Genny has been a bold advocate for new economic development, community building and rural youth retention strategies. In 2011, cultivating relationships, adventures and an appreciation for the country, brought Genny to Huron County.

Laurie Sparling

Director, Brand Compliance

Laurie is responsible for ensuring all uses of the Cowbell brand - from digital to print, fleet to merchandise, internally and through third-parties - are in accordance with established brand guidelines. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI. Laurie has a background in finance and accounting, is co-manager of Maple & Moose, an all-Canadian artist's cooperative in Blyth, and she is actively involved in the community.

John Spencer

Director, Corporate Security

John is a former police officer who spent 30 years in law enforcement in various capacities, a majority of his career working in criminal investigations and several years as a member of an emergency response team. John’s appreciation for great craft beer and live music, combined with his experience and knowledge of harm-reduction strategies, enables him to create and instill a balanced, sustainable, risk-conscious and security-aware culture throughout Cowbell.

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