Michael D'Annunzio, president of Beverage Distributors, has heard a lot of drinking stories, but it comes with the job.
"You get to know and meet and talk with a wide range of people just because they find out what you do," he said. "I served for a couple of years on the committee of advisers at the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics, and I was getting to know the new and old members, and they were all telling me the first time they had a Yuengling lager.
The Clarksburg wholesale distributor business wasn't started by the D'Annunzio family, but Michael and his two brothers are the third generation to work in the business, which supplies Anheuser-Busch, Gallo Family Wineries and other beverage products in as many as 25 West Virginia counties — something that can create logistical challenges.
The business, which his family took over in 1965, employs about 60, and D'Annunzio says he and his brothers have "complementary skills."
"There's always a challenge, whether it is a new supplier relationship or a new hire," he said. "We're very fortunate to have a very tenured workforce with low turnover, but that means we have to work hard to find the next group of successful members of our organization."
D'Annunzio started working full time at Beverage Distributors nearly nine years ago, but he never pictured himself being part of the business.
"When I was growing up I thought all we did was put beer on the truck and go home," he laughed.
D'Annunzio wanted to be sure he experienced life beyond Harrison County, so he attended Marshall University, then Wake Forest University and the University of Sydney-Australia, but he came home to finish at WVU.
D'Annunzio enjoys the frequent shifting of gears his job requires, and it's made him a good "pre-planner" and "crisis manager."
"In one sense, it's pretty predictable," he said. "In the other sense, you never know what's going to happen."
D'Annunzio and his wife, Denah, are parents of 6-year-old Sofia and live in Bridgeport.