Steve Hindy ’71, MAT ’73 named 2020 Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year.
Steve Hindy is co-founder and chairman of The Brooklyn Brewery Corp. He founded Brooklyn Brewery in 1987 with his downstairs neighbor in Brooklyn, Tom Potter, a former lending office at New York’s Chemical Bank. Hindy got interested in home brewing while serving as Middle East Correspondent for The Association Press. From 1979-1984, Hindy lived in Beirut and Cairo and covered the hostage crisis in Iran, the Iran-Iraq War, civil wars in Lebanon and Syria and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. He was sitting behind President Anwar Sadat of Egypt when Sadat was assassinated in 1981. It was a chance encounter with American diplomats who had been posted in Saudi Arabia that led Hindy to brewing. Alcoholic beverages are banned in the Saudi kingdom; the US envoys became homebrewers while serving there. The Saudis turn a blind eye to foreigners brewing at home, as long as they keep it private.The Brooklyn Brewery has become one of America’s top craft breweries and is the biggest exporter of American-style craft beer. The Brooklyn Brewery is known for its support of many not-for-profit and arts organizations in New York City and around the world. Hindy is the Chairman of the Board of Transportation Alternatives, a prominent proponent of bicycling and other alternatives to motor vehicles. He also serves on the board of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park Alliance and Gowanus Canal Conservancy. He is the founder of the North Brooklyn Parks Alliance. Hindy is also a long serving and former Chairman of the Board of The Brewers Association, the trade association of America’s craft brewers. With Potter, who left the brewery in 2003 to start New York Distilling Co., Hindy wrote “BEER SCHOOL: Bottling Success at the Brooklyn Brewery. Hindy also wrote “The Craft Beer Revolution,” a history of the craft beer movement that has led to the creation of 7,700 craft breweries in the United States. Hindy was assistant foreign editor at Newsday when he returned from the Middle East. He also has written for The New York Times, CNN, Vice and many other publications. He and his wife, Ellen Foote, a former public middle school principal, live in Brooklyn, New York, and Brooklin, Maine.
Past Recipients include: