By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Jun 15, 2021 at 12:03 PM

A scholarship program created by The Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company and UW-Madison aims to help boost diversity in the brewing world.

The Jake Leinenkugel Diversity in Brewing Award to support students from underrepresented groups who are studying brewing or fermentation sciences in Madison, was announced Tuesday.

The award's initial endowment comes from a $50,000 donation by Leinie's parent company, Molson Coors Beverage Company, via its social justice initiative.

The scholarship awards are for Latino, Black/African American, American Indian, Asian, Pacific Islander, and/or LGBTQ+ students.

“The craft beer industry needs more diverse voices, and an integral step in making that happen is providing better opportunities to enter the field,” said Dick Leinenkugel, president of Leinenkugel’s, in a statement.

“Hopefully this financial support at a world class university will ultimately help create a more inclusive atmosphere in the craft brewing world.”

The scholarship recipients will also get paid summer internships at the Leinenkugel’s brewery in Chippewa Falls.

“UW–Madison and Leinenkugel’s share a commitment to creating more inclusive and diverse spaces,” said UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank.

“We’re thankful for Leinenkugel’s partnership on this important work, and we’re happy to be able to offer our students additional financial resources and connections to an iconic Wisconsin brand.”

The partnership is just one of a number of similar outcomes from the Brewing Education Scholarship Program launched last year by Molson Coors' craft division, Tenth & Blake.

Similar programs are set at Colorado State University (with AC Golden), Middle Tennessee State University (with Terrapin), Oregon State University (with Hop Valley) and Texas A&M (with Revolver).

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.