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Balcones Founder Tate Gets Court Victory

November 14, 2014

A district judge in Waco, Texas has ruled in favor of Balcones Distilling founding president Charles “Chip” Tate in his ongoing battle with the Balcones board of managers, The Waco Tribune reports. On Monday, Judge Jim Meyer of Waco’s 170th State District Court said the board’s actions since ousting Tate in August were invalid and that he must be present at all company board meetings for any actions—such as funding for a $15 million expansion—to be authorized. Both Tate and the Balcones board had asked the judge to clarify the company’s operating agreement. In August, the board had suspended Tate for 90 days and obtained a temporary restraining order keeping him from entering the company he founded in 2008.

Oklahoma-based PE Investors, chaired by Greg Allen, owns 58% of Balcones and has three members on the board. The last board meeting Tate attended was in July. The board’s attorney, Jeff Armstrong, expressed disappointment at the ruling, which he said would leave Balcones without the ability to fund its expansion. Tate’s attorney, David R. Clouston, said he hoped the larger dispute over the direction of the company could ultimately be resolved, but added “it is becoming clear that one of these people (Tate or Allen) has to go.”


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