The Second Act: Nancy Bixby

Jennifer Lopez’s new movie Second Act is bringing new attention to the term. A Second Act is defined as something, whether it is a hobby, new career, or lifestyle, that a person devotes their life to, usually after a former occupation or career. And while we will probably wait to see the movie until it hits Netflix, we welcome conversation with individuals starting their second calling is a craft brewer, dress designer, or real estate agent. Their stories are fascinating, and we think, they make the best clients. In this series of posts, we’ll introduce you to individuals starting, or in the midst of their second acts, how they got there, and why they are on the brink of something really special.

So without further ado, we would like to introduce you to…

Name: Nancy Bixby

Education/Training: Undergrad in Computer Information Systems

First Job/Career: Systems Analyst / Information Architect

We understand craft brewing is still a little bit of a side hustle. Can you tell us a little bit about your day job?

I work at a large insurance company in the IT department, focused on technical strategies, governance, and solution architecture. I work with IT project teams, identifying the solution architecture, and overseeing the technical design for various projects.

Do you have plans to make Altruist Brewing Company your full-time job? What does that transition look like?

I do not have any current plans to make it my full-time job. We plan to grow the business organically. If the time comes where I am unable to meet my responsibilities for both, I will need to make the decision at that time to either quit my day job, or hire out some of the responsibilities for the brewery.

Have you found any similarities between your current 9 to 5 and craft brewing?

Yes! I feel that my day job has completely prepared me for running this business. Much of my experience has been instrumental in both overseeing the operations of the brewery and in setting the strategy - roadmap, core values, project planning, etc.

Work is work. If you’re willing to pour your heart and soul into what you are doing, then you will be successful.
— Nancy Bixby, Co-founder, Altruist Brewing Company

How is business going so far? What are you most proud of?

Business is going well. Our guests seem to really enjoy the taproom and beer! We have a variety of beers that we rotate and some regulars that we try to keep on tap. The community has welcomed us with open arms and we have a loyal following. I am most proud of the fact that we have 6 employees and are able to provide them with supplemental income!

If you could go back in time, would you pursue Altruist Brewing Company from the start?

This is a tough question for me. It is a lot of work and takes up a lot of my free time. I do love it though, and it has become such a big part of my life that I am very proud of, so I think I would do it again. But I would be lying if I didn’t admit to missing some of the free time that I have given up.

Do you have any advice for someone thinking of pursuing their "Second Act”?

I would say that life is about change and without risks, you don’t get much reward. If you are unhappy with what you are doing, then you don’t have much to lose, assuming your “second act” will be able to pay the bills. But don’t expect anything to be all roses and rainbows. Work is work. If you’re willing to pour your heart and soul into what you are doing, then you will be successful.