Meet Justin Kirby, our Senior Manager of New Business Development and Southeast Regional Manager of our Emerging Brands portfolio! When Justin isn’t working on bringing new brands into our portfolio or selling our current Emerging Brands, he spends his time traveling, being in the great outdoors, as well as playing and watching football! Find out more about Justin in our Q&A below.
How long have you been working for TBS?
6 years; I started September 30, 2012 with a fancy hallway desk and a view of a vineyard painting on the wall in front of me.
What is your title?
Senior Manager, New Business Development & Southeast Regional Manager, Emerging Brands
And what do you do in that role?
Main responsibilities include seeking out, vetting, and onboarding new suppliers for our portfolio. Within Emerging Brands, I am responsible for managing the distributors south of the Mason Dixon and across to Texas.
What is a day at TBS like in your shoes?
It’s rarely the same, which I think all TBS team members can relate to. One thing I try to keep constant is my morning ritual: wake up, move, make coffee and maybe a smoothie, and organize my to-do list.
Tell us a little about yourself:
I’m from Simpsonville, South Carolina and I’ve lived in this state for all my life except for a 1-year stint in Brookline, Massachusetts where I worked at Coolidge Corner Clubhouse. The weather was so beautiful there year-round I couldn’t stand it and decided to come back to the South. After various jobs (the most interesting of which was buying and selling heavy construction equipment around the globe for my stepdad and his partners), I asked a friend if the company she worked for was hiring. I reminded her that senior year at Clemson, while studying for exams at the library, I introduced her to my friend who would become her boyfriend – now husband and father of her child – and would appreciate a return favor if she could get me an interview. And here we are today. Thanks, Lindsay!
Favorite drink or cocktail that describes your personality?
I don’t like picking favorites because it depends on my mood and situation. So, a drink that describes my personality:
Bourbon with a rock. It’s not for everyone and might seem harsh at first, but eventually people find me to be chill and mellow.
What do you like best about working at TBS?
The variety of challenges and opportunities I’ve been offered, feeling like part of an ongoing success, and of course visiting the people behind our brands and sharing their stories.
What is one thing at work you can’t do without?
Favorite place to travel?
I’ve been to several awesome places through TBS and New Zealand is second to none. My favorite vacation spot simply involves hiking, camping, and various mountain activities.
Describe your perfect meal:
Either the Sausage & Rabe pie at Uneeda Sicilian or a Ribeye cooked over open woodfire at a campsite along the Chattooga River.
What do you do in your free time?
Yoga, workout, watch football, hike, enjoy the various restaurants Charleston has to offer. I recently started playing in a flag football league which reminded me how long it’s been since I’ve sprinted all-out for any prolonged period.
If you could travel to one place on earth, right now, where would you go?
Favorite ice cream flavor?
Dark Chocolate with salted peanut butter and caramel.
Best advice you ever received?
If you ever start to take things too seriously, just remember we are talking monkeys on an organic spaceship flying through the universe.