House Invite Resolution
During the third full session of 2020, the Georgia House of Representatives adopted Resolution 868, ‘recognizing and commending’ Erik Vonk and Karin Vonk, owners of the Richland Distilling Company, for their significant contributions to the economic development of rural Georgia. The resolution was authored by Representative Gerald Greene (R- Cuthbert) and sponsored by Speaker David Ralston (R- Blue Ridge) and Representatives Mike Choakas (R-Americus), Randy Nix (R-LaGrange), Brett Harrell (R- Snelville) and Don Hogan (R-St. Simon’s Island).
Speaker David Ralston recognized Representative Greene, invited Erik and Karin Vonk, owners of the Richland Distilling Company to join him behind his podium on the House floor and remarked: ‘Richland Rum is made here in Georgia, by Georgians, putting Georgians to work and sells in the top tier of its class around the world’. Representative Greene added: ‘Erik and Karin Vonk are hard-working people bringing about the revitalization of the cities of Richland, GA and Brunswick, GA’. In response, Richland Rum founder Erik Vonk thanked the Speaker and Representative Greene and stated: ‘The gratitude is really all ours. Georgia is the best State for business in the Union. The proactive government support that exists here does not exist anywhere else’. Vonk continued: ‘Without your leadership, Mr. Speaker, the efforts of Representative Greene and Regulated Industries Committee Chairman Alan Powell (R- Hartwell) we would not be able to produce Richland Rum right here in Georgia and create distribution for our products in 15 states and exports to 11 countries’. Richland Rum’s owner concluded: ‘Richland Rum – which is Georgia’s Spirit ® – has only two ingredients: home grown Georgia sugar cane and water from the Georgia aquifer; at the same time, it is The Spirit of Georgia® that lives in the Richland Distilling Company, drives its people and is embodied by our home State. It is the Spirit of Georgia® that allows us to create, sell and export the best Rum known to mankind’.