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Local woman succeeding in male-dominated distillery business

Posted at 6:14 AM, Mar 22, 2021

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (KMTV) - Distilleries are a male-dominated industry but that didn't discourage Doreen Blakely one bit.

"As far as I know in our local area, there are no other [woman-owned] distilleries,” said Doreen Blakely, owner of Modern Matriarch.

Blakely has faced some challenges in the industry.

"When it comes to a distillery, understanding not only the science, but the legal aspect associated with making sure that you're in compliance with the federal government, and taxes. It has been the greatest challenge ever. I can see why that probably hinders a lot of individuals from saying they want to be able to own a distillery,” she said.

Blakely did not go into this business knowing all the answers. But with the help of fellow distillery owners across the state and her passion to learn she will now have her products on the shelves in Iowa and soon in Nebraska as well.

Modern Matriarch is more than just a name. It is an embodiment of who Blakely is for her family.

"We've got our own vision of what the matriarch means as being that strong individual within the family that makes everything happen,” Blakely said. “But now it is the modern woman. You know people that are owning their own businesses, and what those challenges look like having to raise a family, own your own business, and all of those challenges that come in and still having to deal with some of the issues related to being a woman, unfortunately. I really wanted the brand to emulate the passions that matriarchs should have in this world,” Blakely said.

Blakely's mom encouraged her.

"She had given me a faith, an encouragement to do anything that I wanted to do,” Blakely said.

And now Doreen encourages her daughter Alyssa.

"Not only did I grow up with this wonderful example of what I wanted to be when I grew up, but she had also surrounded me with those same types of driven, independent women who really gave me the opportunity to grow into that," Alyssa Blakely said.

Doreen’s dream is to have her daughter take over Modern Matriarch in the future and have it be a legacy for her family.

To learn more about Modern Matriarch, click here.

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