In February, 1990, the Forum held its first organizational meeting in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The Forum was created to provide representation for the interests of smaller companies in the beverage alcohol industry. The organization was to be called: The Presidents' Forum of the Beverage Alcohol Industry and its members were the CEOs of beverage alcohol companies. The specific objectives that were adopted at that time were:
- To establish a forum for those companies not adequately represented by existing trade associations.
- To provide a voice for members of the Forum and to furnish a vehicle for communicating with other industry organizations.
- To consider various issues facing industry and to issue position papers, press releases and other documents reflecting the views of the members.
The statement of purpose that was adopted:
The Presidents' Forum of the Beverage Alcohol Industry is an informal coalition of chief executive officers of small and medium size companies in the United States which produce or import beer, wine, and distilled spirits.
The purpose of the Forum is to provide an opportunity for the executives to apply their collective experience and expertise to the consideration and resolution of issues affecting the beverage alcohol industry.
In October, 2012, the members voted to change the name of the organization to:
The Presidents' Forum of the Distilled Spirits Industry