Local businesswoman meets with president
New Glarus Brewery owner attends meeting at White House
New Glarus Brewing co-founder and President Deb Carey met with President Barack Obama at the White House on Tuesday.
Carey was one of 15 small-business owners called to the White House to meet with Obama and Vice President Joe Biden about the looming fiscal cliff.
Carey and her husband have worked hard to get where they are today. New Glarus Brewing is still expanding.
"This year, we'll brew 128,000 barrels of beer," Carey said.
The brewery's numerous awards are likely what led to the meeting Tuesday afternoon with the president and his top staff.
Carey said she didn't know that the president might be sitting in when she agreed to come to Washington, D.C., for the meeting.
"Then when I got there, they started to say that President Obama might be attending, so I was like, 'Oh, my God!'" Carey said.
It was a closed-door meeting. Carey said everyone shared ideas on job creation, why small businesses struggle, tax cuts and more.
Carey said she got some time to speak with the president.
"When the president came in, he made a point to come walk around to each of us and shake our hand and talk to us about our businesses, which I thought, 'The guy's busy,' so I was really happy to have that honor," Carey said.
It was a serious meeting, with some lighter moments as well.
"(Obama) did enjoy talking beer with me," Carey said.
Carey brought the president some New Glarus beer -- the brewery's Serendipity brand.
In exchange, the president sent his staff scrambling for his beer. Carey took home three bottles of White House honey ale that was brewed in the basement of the executive residence.
"We're really interested in tasting it. I will give him an opinion back, which I think they didn't know how big I was with opinions when I got invited to the meeting to begin with. But they'll know by the time we're done here," Carey said.
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