Jim Richert was born and raised in Palos Heights, a southside suburb of Chicago. He attended Marist High School and graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in Business, getting his major in Marketing, and minors in Economics, Business Administration and Philosophy. He then studied at John Marshall Law School and founded Law Office of James G. Richert, in 1994.
Jim first became interested in craft style beers in the early 90’s. As he recalls, his first micro-brewed beer was Anchor Steam. He was immediately hooked by the quality and taste from that point forward. The only problem was that micro-brewed beers were extremely limited in availability. His quest for good beer eventually expanded once the internet could make beer from other regions available to him. He found a store on the west coast that offered an entire array of both domestic and foreign beers that were unavailable in the Chicagoland region. He ordered cases of various craft beers and had them shipped on a regular basis.
Recently, he has become very interested in the craft brewery expansion. Nothing like this has existed since the pre-prohibition era. He figured, why not toss his hat in the ring. His talents, however, lie in the area of the law and business, not in brewing. Jim was introduced to Walter through a mutual friend and was told, “this guy lives for making beer.” Once meeting Walter and Oscar in person, Jim could tell they were passionate and knowledgeable about brewing. It was obvious they had a great chemistry. The plans were discussed and the early stages of “Banging Gavel Brews” started taking shape.
As a co-founder of Banging Gavel Brews, his role is to address the legal, business and distribution aspects of the venture.
Jim’s older Brother, Ed, was born and raised in Palos Heights, a southside suburb of Chicago. He attended Marist High School and graduated from the University of Notre Dame with an Accounting degree.
Ed has always had an appreciation of high quality, great tasting beer though it wasn’t until his younger brother Jim invited him to a Brewing class that he began to explore the possibilities of getting into the brewery business. As a co-founder of Banging Gavel Brews, his role is to address and assess the financial health of the venture and is Banging Gavel Brews’ self-proclaimed Chief Quality Control Officer.
Beckie O’Connor was born in Orland Park, a southside suburb of Chicago. She studied Fine Arts, Graphic Design, and Marketing at St. Norbert College. She has worked at agencies in Chicago on brands such as Allstate, Comcast SportsNet, Citibank, Conagra Foods, Discover Card and Roche Diagnostics, as well as several startup companies throughout her career.
Beckie is the daughter of Ed Richert, so obviously the niece of Jim. She brings her creative experience of working in the Advertising Industry to the team to create and market the brand. She shares their excitement for the launch of their assortment of beers. She, along with the partners has put together plans for each beer as it is developed and incorporates the flavor, style and personality into marketing strategies.