Copal Tree Distillery and Copalli Rum support sustainable agriculture causes in Southern Belize via producing and selling premium organic spirits.
Mark Breene joined Copalli Spirits as CEO in January 2021 and is responsible for leading the brand’s growth across the USA and Europe. Mark is a marketer by background, and during a 25-year career he has specialized in developing luxury and craft brands for some of the world’s best known spirit brands.
Mark joined Copalli following eight years with Remy Cointreau, where he most recently served as CEO of Westland Distillery following Remy’s purchase of Westland in 2016. Mark joined Remy as Chief Marketing Officer for North America in 2011.
Prior to joining Remy, Mark worked for Diageo PLC for 12 years. Through a variety of leadership positions at different times Mark led Diageo’s Rum, Vodka and Tequila businesses.
Ed Tiege is the President and Master Distiller at Copal Tree Distillery in Belize and was involved in the distillery construction, commissioning and developed Copalli Rum. Prior to joining Copal Tree Distillery, he ran his own successful distillery in Westchester County, NY for 10 years.
He received his distillation and fermentation training at the cognac distillery Domain Prive, in Archiac, France.
He received a Master of Science degree in Industrial Administration from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelors of Science in Mathematics from the State University of Stony Brook.
Lester Muralles is a native Belizean and the General Manager of the Copal Tree Farm, the first certified organic farm in Belize.
This position caps a career spanning more than 26 years which has enabled Lester to pursue his passion for agriculture science. Lester joined Copal Tree Farms from the University of Belize where he managed the commercial farm and planned, coordinated and executed training sessions for agriculture students.
Prior to this position, Lester held a variety of management positions in commercial farming and natural resource management. He earned an AD in Agriculture from Belize College of Agriculture and a BS in Agriculture from EARTH University in Costa Rica where he specialized in sustainable agriculture production and management.
Karen Yong is a Distillery Operator at Copal Tree Distillery Ltd. She joined the Distillery team at the initial start up of operations in 2016. Her duties include distillery shift supervisor, where she is responsible for initiating and monitoring fermentation and distillation during her shift, and as processing supervisor where she oversees blending and bottling operations.
Karen has obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Biotechnology from Swinburne University of Technology, Sarawak Campus, Malaysia since 2015. She did her internship at Tropical Peat Research Laboratory in Sarawak. Her studies included various subject areas such as Advance Biochemistry, Biotechnology Research Project, Industrial Microbiology, Molecular Biotechnology, Communicable Disease Control, and Environmental Biotechnology.
Waluco Maheia is the Global Brand Ambassador for Copalli Rum. He was born and raised in Belize. Waluco spent most of his youth in Cattle Landing Village, Toledo District, Belize, and attended Loyola University Chicago, where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Policy in 2018.
For Waluco, returning to Belize after graduation was never a question, and he looked forward to combining his passion for the outdoors with his love of Belize. The opportunity arose in 2018 when he joined Copal Tree Lodge and Distillery. Waluco started on the ground floor and learned every part of the business … from maintenance and housekeeping to distillery operations and giving tours of the Distillery.
Today, Waluco has translated his love of Belize and knowledge of Copal Tree and rum production to his role as Global Brand Ambassador for Copalli Rum, while also serving as Assistant Manager for the Copal Tree Lodge. When at home in Belize, Waluco is the resident rum expert and conducts tours and detailed rum tastings at the Distillery, while supporting sales efforts across the country. While traveling throughout the US and Europe he represents Copalli Rum at trade shows and consumer events and leads Master Classes to educate bartenders and mixologists about Copalli Rum and its sustainable approach to creating a world-class spirit.
Shirleymae Parham is the Assistant Manager at Copal Tree Distillery Ltd. She joined the Distillery team at the initial start up of operations in 2016. Prior to becoming the Assistant Manager for the Distillery, Shirleymae was at Copal Tree Lodge bringing 10 years of experience in management and customer relations.
Some of her current responsibilities are the company’s legal operational requirements within Belize, human resources, supervising accounting, general administrative duties, international purchasing and logistics for exporting and importing of shipments.
Shirleymae has obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Business Administration from Anglia Ruskin University since 2017 and a Bachelor’s Degree in Tourism Management from the University of Belize since 2008.
Todd Robinson has trailblazed conservation efforts in Central America’s Belize with widespread and socially impactful investments since 2005. His charitable foundations have profoundly improved the marine and terrestrial environment as well as the standard of living of the people in Southern Belize through educational grants and philanthropic business developments.
Robinson is especially committed to preserving Belize’s pristine marine environment with strategic investments in the country’s fishing industry including the institution of a catch and release program, the construction and donation of a research station to the University of Belize, and an initiative to benefit The Port of Honduras Marine Reserve that helps local communities harvest its sustainable resources and protect it from exploitation by poachers.
Since 2006, Robinson has been the key stakeholder in Copal Tree Lodge in Punta Gorda that is now the largest employer in the Toledo District of Belize outside of the government providing jobs in hospitality and organic farming. The award-winning lodge has helped ignite tourism to Southern Belize among a diverse and robust audience of travelers. In 2016, he built Copal Tree Distillery adjacent to the Lodge’s property and it was then transferred into a trust that supports philanthropic efforts in the Toledo District of Southern Belize.
Robinson has extended his investments to fund individual Belizean tourism operators in addition to a young artist coalition that documents environmental and social injustices through documentary filmmaking.
Relax & Enjoy
Our organic single estate rum is made from just three ingredients sourced from an organic farm in the heart of the rainforest in Southern Belize.