The Tavern League of Wisconsin is a non-profit trade association dedicated to serving the needs of the retail beverage alcohol segment of the hospitality industry in the State of Wisconsin.
Serving licensed beverage retailers
The Tavern League of Wisconsin exists to provide services to members that are not available to them as individuals and to use the collective strength of its membership to accomplish, as a group, goals that cannot be accomplished alone. The League provides its members with services such as legislative and governmental relations, legal information, educational services and promotes the industry on behalf of its membership.
Founded in 1935, the Tavern League of Wisconsin is a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit organization which also has a charitable arm, the Wisconsin Tavern League Foundation which is a 501(c)(3). With over 5,000 members, the Tavern League of Wisconsin is the largest trade association in the United States to exclusively represent the interests of licensed beverage retailers. The TLW is comprised of 70 local leagues representing every county in the state of Wisconsin.
Strength in numbers
More than 161,000 jobs are generated by the alcohol industry in Wisconsin — that’s an important, positive impact on the economy, with pre-pandemic figures close to $3.2 billion in total annual wages paid, and taxes totaling more than $2.6 billion.
In 2021, the Tavern League of Wisconsin was proud to contribute more than $13.5 million to support nearly 10,000 charities across the state. Our members give back to their communities with generous fundraisers to benefit a wide variety of charities.
The TLW SafeRide Program has greatly expanded over the last 10 years and has helped contribute to a decline in alcohol-related fatalities. In 2021, the TLW SafeRide Program provided over 42,000 free rides home to patrons around the state.
Each spring and fall, the Tavern League of Wisconsin hosts a convention and trade show — an opportunity to connect with members from around the state and find solutions for their businesses.
The Tavern League of Wisconsin hosts an annual Legislative Day in Madison which is among the largest lobbying events in the state. It's an opportunity to hear updates on important issues facing the hospitality industry, and to lobby legislators on those important issues.
"The TLW is the most effective and the most important organization representing the hospitality industry. They represent in the State of Wisconsin and in Washington, DC, views of both small and big operators. It works for you!"
- Jerry Rassmussen, Owner of the Brat Stop, Kenosha -
- To represent every member and maintain a strong voice in the legislative process in Madison and Washington.
- To keep members abreast of current activities and future goals of the Tavern League of Wisconsin.
- To update licensees on legal and legislative issues affecting the alcohol beverage industry on the state and federal level.
- To provide educational opportunities which prepare licensees for the escalating challenges facing alcohol beverage retailers.
- To keep the lines of communication open through various channels and levels of representation: i.e. Board of Officers and Directors, Local League Presidents and Secretaries, monthly local league meetings, District-wide caucuses, statewide conventions, bi-monthly On Premise magazine and monthly newsletters.
- To offer licensees the opportunity to network with fellow members.
- To provide members with the perfect balance of motivation, education and entertainment.
- To create goodwill through the community and safety through our SafeRide program in our communities.
- To continually strive to be the most valuable source of information for our members so that they cannot afford to not be a member.
Code of ethics
- The Tavern League of Wisconsin believes in taking good care of our customers and protecting against the effects of alcohol abuse. We want our customers to have a good time and we are interested in their well-being.
- We reserve the right to refuse service to persons we believe are intoxicated. Friends don't let friends drive intoxicated. We want to be your friend and make sure you get home safely.
- We will not encourage excessive drinking. You count with us. May we count on you to have a soft drink, coffee or non-alcohol beverage when you feel you may have had too much to drink? We want you to be able to come back again.
- We want you to get home safely. If you need a ride, we will try to arrange safe transportation home. We hope you will consider doing the same for your friends.
- We will not knowingly serve an underage person not accompanied by a parent or a legal guardian and will check age identification when in doubt. We ask for your cooperation.
- We will not encourage or permit alcohol consumption contests on our premises.
- We will keep ourselves informed, and encourage all of our customers to help us enforce the alcohol beverage laws, practice responsible drinking and good citizenship.