Julie Verratti, founder and co-owner of a popular craft brewery who was a candidate for lieutenant governor in 2018, said Friday that she is joining the Biden-Harris administration next month.
Verratti, who owns Denizens Brewing Co., has been tapped to serve as the Associate Administrator of Field Operations for the U.S. Small Business Administration. In her role, Verratti will be charged with leading the SBA’s 68 field offices and 10 regional offices across the country. The Office of Field Operations is responsible for the execution of the agency’s products and services for small businesses.
“I have always been an outspoken advocate for small businesses, and I am extremely honored and excited to be able to serve our country in the Biden-Harris Administration,” Verratti said in a statement. “This is an urgent time to work tirelessly on bold and equitable solutions for the hard-working women and men who operate the millions of small businesses that are the backbone of our economy and communities.”
Immediately prior to opening Denizens in 2014, Verratti was a Presidential Management Fellow and Policy Advisor for the SBA. Throughout her 20-plus-year career she has worked for political campaigns, non-profit advocacy organizations, and for the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
But she is most famous for Denizens, the craft brewery she opened with her wife and her wife’s brother-in-law in downtown Silver Spring, which has become a popular destination. The brewery expanded to a second location, in Riverdale, in 2019.
Verratti has served on the Board of Directors for the Brewers Association since 2018, and has served on the Board of Directors for the Brewers Association of Maryland since 2019. She is also a former board member of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce and was named their 2019 Business Advocate of the Year. In 2020 she was named the Beer Champion of the Year by Brewbound, a leading beer industry trade publication, for her advocacy on behalf of not just craft brewers, but all small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In 2018, Alec Ross, the Baltimore author and tech entrepreneur who sought the Democratic nomination for governor, picked Verratti as his candidate for lieutenant governor. The ticket finished seventh in a nine-candidate field.
Verratti will start her new job on March 1.