Rebecca Creek founder Steve Ison discusses opening a distillery with Big Ideas TXST

Inside TXST

Jayme Blaschke | February 1, 2021

man smiling in front of wine barrels with arms crossed
Steve Ison, founder and CEO of Rebecca Creek Distillery

Steve Ison, founder and CEO of Rebecca Creek Distillery, joins the Big Ideas TXST podcast to discuss how he made the leap from selling insurance to opening one of the first craft spirits distilleries in Texas.

Ison, a 1993 political science graduate of Texas State University, founded the San Antonio-based distillery in 2009, making Rebecca Creek one of the first commercial distilleries opened in Texas since prohibition. Since then, Rebecca Creek has grown to become one of the larger craft spirits distilleries in the country, producing Rebecca Creek Whisky, Texas Ranger Whisky and Enchanted Rock Vodka.

In spring 2020, with the COVID-19 rapidly spreading, the distillery switched over to full-time production of ethyl alcohol, which is the primary component in hand sanitizer. Ultimately, Ison and Rebecca Creek donated hundreds of gallons of sanitizer to Texas State and other public universities as well as San Antonio, Fort Worth, Dallas, Houston and Austin for use by those cities' first responders to help prevent them from contracting COVID-19.

Big Ideas TXST is a monthly podcast from Texas State’s Division of University Advancement that goes inside the fascinating minds forging innovation, research and creativity at the university. Hosted by Daniel Seed, a lecturer in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, each episode features thoughtful interviews and discussion with the thought leaders developing innovative ideas to make the world a better place.

Big Ideas TXST can be found at The podcast may also be listened to or subscribed to at:

For more information, contact University Communications:

Jayme Blaschke, 512-245-2555

Sandy Pantlik, 512-245-2922