The American Distilling Institute (ADI) is honored to announce that Kentucky bourbon icon Bill Samuels Jr. will deliver the keynote address at this year’s ADI Craft Spirits Conference & Vendor Expo, to be held in Louisville, KY.

Samuels, born and raised in Bardstown, KY, is the son of Maker’s Mark founder Bill Samuels Sr., and is a 6th generation scion of a whiskey empire dating back to the 18th century.

“ADI is thrilled to welcome Bill Samuels Jr. as keynote speaker at our 2021 conference,” says ADI President Erik Owens. “Hearing from such an influential and well-known voice, in the epicenter of American distilling, is something we know our members are genuinely looking forward to.”

Samuels will speak on how collaboration and cooperation have been important influences in the evolution of the spirits industry. He will also discuss how the state of Kentucky can serve as a role model for spirits producers and spirits industry advocates pressing for regulatory change around the US.

ADI’s 2021 Conference & Vendor Expo will be held August 23–25, in Louisville, KY. This year’s conference stands as the first in-person craft spirits industry conference to be held since the beginning of the pandemic in February of 2020. Currently there are over 170 vendors and exhibitors registered to attend.

Samuel’s keynote address will take place as part of the official kickoff of the conference and vendor expo, starting at 8:45 am on Tuesday, August 24, at the Kentucky International Convention Center.

Conference registration is open now, and Early Bird discounts have been extended until July 19th.

To register for the conference or to learn more, visit