The NJAI periodically hosts a Summit, bringing together diverse suppliers to learn, make connections, and find out how to start or improve their businesses.


In association with The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative and its online site you are submitting your information for consideration for one of our available programs.

The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative consists of three prongs of which two are administered by The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative. These opportunities are made possible by the generous support of Jack Daniel's and The Uncle Nearest Distillery.

Programs and criteria include and may not be limited to the below.

Participants must be able to self identify as Black, Indigenous, or person of color.

Participants and their business should be located in the US.


The Leadership Acceleration Program (LAP) strives to advance the career paths of talented BIPOC professionals to positions of visibility and importance within the spirits industry.

* Two candidates are accepted into the program each cycle which runs approximately 18 months.

* This pogram seeks candidates with experience in beverage alcohol, consumer goods, and/or hospitality who are ready for mid-career acceleration (not entry level).

* Roles include distillery operations, marketing, and sales which have a visible presence and impact on the respective company.

* Must apply through each company's established processes.


In an effort to fortify BIPOC owned businesses, the Business Incubation Program (BIP) strengthens and forges business development through access to industry expertise and resources.

* Must have a brand with at least two (2) years in the marketplace.

* Must have production and distribution of at least 1,000 9L cases annually.

* Must have financial security.

* Must be majority BIPOC owned.

* Must have a distributor or be self distributing where legal.

* Founders/owners must be engaged in the daily operations of the business (not passive owners).

* Ownership structure must be clearly defined and free of conflicts.

Submissions for the above two programs will be reviewed two to three times each year. By submitting this form there is no guarantee your company will be selected. If selected, you will receive further communication from The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative regarding next steps. Eligibility and participation are based several criteria set out on our website and further determined by The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative in the second phase of the application and consideration process.

The third prong is the formation of The Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative is THE NEAREST GREEN SCHOOL OF DISTILLING, an accredited academic STEM based curriculum offering at Motlow State Community College. To inquire about this opportunity you will need to connect directly with that institution.

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