From his upbringing on dairy farms in Eastern Washington to being the proud founder of a brewery in Tacoma, Pablo has shown he is a capable, self-made individual. Pablo’s journey has been both global and guided. Unapologetic pride in his country and his faith in God have been tried and tested. Despite the achievements and trials thus far, he believes that the journey has just begun.
At the age of 10, Pablo joined a group called the Naval Sea Cadets. This was a youth program sponsored by the Navy League. He grew in ranks over time and was the leader of the group by the age of 16. He took this experience and enlisted in the United States Navy in 2006, just after graduating high school.
In basic training, he earned one of the highest awards at Great Lakes, the Military Order of World Wars out of his battle group of roughly 1,000 sailors. After training in his rate in Mississippi, he was ordered to serve on the USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) in Bremerton, Washington. Only half a year passed since graduating High school to the time he was deployed to the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom during the War on Terror.
Upon returning home from various trainings, he invested more time brewing beer. Instinct and luck collided when Pablo and Derrick began to think about a starting a beer company. Soon this small idea snowballed into a real company. Pablo would work long days in his union job and switch clothes upon returning home either into a suit for a meeting with a lender or old shirts and jeans to paint and build a bar. After many months of hard work, Odd Otter Brewing Company opened its doors to the public. Soon after employees were hired and beer was flowing.
Balancing a job at Pepsi, the Army and the brewery did not come easy. While doing the build out in the Brewery, his unit was tapped to send some soldiers to the Oso Mudslide disaster. Later that year the largest wildfires in Washington State History led the Governor calling on the 303rd Calvary, who was trained to fight wild land fires, to the Chiwaukum Creek Fires. Derrick led the Unit’s Family Readiness Group and helped the soldier’s families find counseling and resources. Pablo took his experience in leadership and took charge of a team. He was later awarded the Washington State Achievement Medal for his work at the wild fires in the winter of 2014. His year with the Army was not over. He was one of 8 selected to participate on a NATO program and served with his British Counterparts. During his time that year with the Queen’s Own Yeomanry, he was recognized for his work in maintaining the relationship between his U.S. Troop and the British reserve unit. Also that year, SGT Monroy attended Warrior Leadership School and was on the Commandants list for being one of the top soldiers. In between all this, Odd Otter Brewing was coming together.
Pablo believes his journey has just begun. Derrick continues to work hard for the families of the 303rd Cavalry while maintaining his regular job and filling in at the brewery. Pablo continues to serve his community in any way he can. St. Leo’s connection feeding the homeless is a monthly event he coordinates with his fellow employees at Pepsi. At Pepsi, Pablo has maintained membership with the Teamsters as they negotiate a contract this summer.
Back at home, the Monroy family includes their dachshund Roxy and pet turtles who look forward to a pond of their own near Lake Tapps. Pablo is a certified Wildland firefighter, and is preparing to serve his state again in the coming dry summer. Pablo takes pride in being a young Latino, soldier, business owner, member of the LGBT community, union employee involved in his Church and community, he remains first and foremost a proud American as his dad Junior has raised him.
Pablo Monroy remains ready to serve and ready to lead.