Meet Your Officers

Introducing you to the Board Members of the 2020-2021 Federation of Historical Bottle Collectors.

John O’Neill, FOHBC President, is a California native, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has been a past president of the San Jose Antique Bottle Collectors Association and a prior officer of the Peninsula Bottle Collectors. John has had a strong interest in bottle collecting since age ten, and is currently collecting San Francisco saloon material including pumpkinseed flasks, coffin flasks, and memorabilia, all pre-prohibition. He wrote his first book on California pottery and stoneware, and was a presenter on the subject at the 2016 Sacramento National Convention & Expo. He has been married to his wife Cheri for the past 37 years and has two grown children. John is the managing director for the San Francisco office of Risk Strategies Company, a Boston based Insurance Brokerage.
Vacant, FOHBC First Vice President, Position open.
Vacant, FOHBC Second President, Position open.
Val Berry, FOHBC Secretary, grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, moving to upstate New York in her teens. She recently retired from working in the medical/home care field as a secretary for 31 years. Val is involved with several organizations in her hometown of Ephratah, New York and gives many hours of volunteer work. She met her husband, Jim, in high school and they have been married for 45 years. They have five children, twelve grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Together they travel throughout the country visiting family and attending bottle shows. Their collections include inks, historical flasks, mineral waters and local history.
Jim Berry Jim Berry, FOHBC Treasurer, was born and raised in Ephratah, a small town in upstate New York. He had served as Highway Superintendent in the Town of Ephratah for the past 28 years and has been happily retired from that position for almost three years. Jim is a collector of colored inks, historical flasks, mineral waters and local history. Jim and his wife, Valeri, enjoy traveling, especially to visit family and also attend bottle shows across the country. Jim spends a lot of time hunting, fishing, making maple syrup and honey. He has been married to Val for 45 years; they have five children (three are in the U.S. Air Force); twelve grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
JimBenderMug Jim Bender, FOHBC Historian, has collected bottles for over 40 years and was mentored by the late Ed Bartos who was a bottle dealer and collector in the 1970s. They remained friends until his death. Collecting to Jim has always been about the friends it has brought him. Jim has collected inks, bitters, mineral waters, reproduction bottles, and up to a few years ago, Union Clasping Hands flasks of which he has put together one of the nicest groups ever. Jim then went back to basic collecting of anything he likes and has always enjoyed collecting that way the best. Jim has served as Mohawk Valley Club President, Northeast Director for the FOHBC and recently served as Membership Director for FOHBC. He was also co-chair of the FOHBC 2017 Springfield National Antique Bottle Convention & Expo.
Martin Van Zant Martin Van Zant, FOHBC Bottles and Extras Editor, has been collecting bottles since he was 17, when his stepfather took him on a dig. Martin collects historical Masonic flasks, Indiana blob beers, Indiana pontiled medicines, Indiana bitters, Indiana sodas and also lightning rod balls on the side. Martin is the editor for two bottles clubs, Wabash Valley Antique Bottle and Pottery Club out of Terre Haute and the Circle City Antique Bottle Club out of Indianapolis. Martin states that his door is always open to talk bottles, and to take your stories, so give him a call or send him a message.
Vacant, FOHBC Merchandising Director, Position open.
Linda Sheppard, FOHBC Membership Director, works for Lexington Center, a home for mentally and physically challenged people as a Direct Care Coordinator. She was introduced to bottle collecting 15 years ago by Jim Bender, FOHBC Historian. Over these years, she has attended many bottle shows and attends the Bender/Sheppard table in support of Jim Bender. Linda collects small jugs and bottles from her home town of Dolgeville, New York. She is always learning something new about bottles and enjoys all the people she meets.
Vacant, FOHBC Conventions Director,
EM2_16mugX Elizabeth Meyer, FOHBC Business Manager, is a native and proud Texan living in Houston. She has a love for antiques, collectibles and especially is passionate about her horses and enjoys spending time with her daughter and three grandchildren. Elizabeth has worked professionally at FMG Design for the past 24+ years in various positions including project management, information technology, accounting, human resources, quality control and now Sr. Vice President. She loves working with people, traveling with family and enjoys going to bottle shows and looking for unique small antiques and holy water bottles. She has taken on the FOHBC Business Manager position as a non-voting and compensated consultant.
Vacant, FOHBC Public Relations Director, Position open.
Ferdinand Meyer V, FOHBC Director-at-Large, has a BFA in Fine Art and Graphic Design from the Kansas City Art Institute and School of Design. He is also a principal and founder of FMG Design, a nationally recognized design consultation firm. Ferdinand is a passionate collector of American historical glass specializing in bitters bottles, color runs and related classic figural bottles. He also maintains the design and brand standards for the FOHBC. Ferdinand is married to Elizabeth Requejo Meyer and lives in Houston, Texas with their daughter and three wonderful grandchildren. The Meyer family is also very involved in Quarter Horses, antiques and early United States postage stamps. Ferdinand recently completed his third, 2-year term as President of the FOHBC and is a director of the FOHBC Virtual Museum.
Vacant, FOHBC Director-at-Large, Position open.
Richard SiriFOHBC Director-at-Large, is known for his extensive Western bottle collections having amassed one of the most complete Western bitters bottle collections, as well as extensive collections of whiskeys, Hostetter’s Stomach Bitters and USA Hospital bottles, among other things. He is always willing to share his knowledge on his favorite subjects and that knowledge has found a public place inside many books, articles and exhibitions about antique bottles. He has held several offices within the federation, most notably that as president in 2008. Richard co-chaired the FOHBC 2012 Reno National Antique Bottle Expo and the most recent, FOHBC 2016 Sacramento National Antique Bottle Convention & Expo. He is also a major supporter and an active member of the Northwestern Bottle Collectors Association. In 2009, Richard Siri first brought forth the concept of developing the FOHBC Virtual Museum. He now serves on the museum Board of Directors and he, along with his wife Beverley, is a major financial contributor to the museum. Richard was also inducted theFOHBC Hall off fame in 2018.
Steve Lang, FOHBC Midwest Region DirectorSteve Lang, and his wife Dawn live in Camby, Indiana. Steve grew up with a mother and father that were both collectors. His mom collected Coca-Cola items and his father collected anything automotive, machinery, or anything that caught his eye. Steve started with beer cans and baseball cards as a child. His father gave him some bottles and beer trays he had bought during the 1970s and he was hooked on advertising. Steve is currently president of the Circle City Bottle, Glass and Pottery Club in Indianapolis. He previously held the vice-president position in the club for two years. Steve collects Indiana Hutch sodas, ales, whiskeys, and other Indiana bottles that catch his interest. He also collects Hutch sodas from all over Indiana and really enjoys getting out and walking through flea markets and antique malls with his wife looking for the next bottle for his collection or an Analee doll for hers. He recently purchased some property in Kentucky and has started looking for Indiana bottles there also. The Lang’s have a daughter Emma that is currently studying creative writing at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana.
Jeff Ullman, FOHBC Northeast Region Directoris a long time collector that grew up near Sharon Springs, New York. He started collecting bottles around age 12 when he dug several nice bottles in the dumps near his home. He has collected several types of bottles and stoneware over the years but is a serious collector of Saratoga Type Mineral Waters. Jeff is the current secretary for the Saratoga Type Bottle Collectors Society and produces their periodic newsletter, “The Spouter”.  He has served as both President & Vice President of the Capital Region (Albany, NY) Bottle Club and is also a member of the Mohawk Valley Bottle Collectors Club. He is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and is also a retired New York State Police Senior Investigator. He has been married to his wife Aimee since 1991 and they have one son, Adam, who is a golf professional on the West Coast. Jeff and Aimee currently live in Cobleskill, New York.
Jake Smith, FOHBC Southern Region Director, Jake Smith lives in Talladega, Alabama and is a native of Sylacauga, Alabama. He is married to his wife, Amanda, and they have three children, Sydney, Bradlee, and Hershel. Jake has always collected something as far back as he can remember. He got into collecting bottles back in 2010 by collecting Coca Cola bottles from his state. He is trying to get one Coca Cola bottle from each plant that has a bottle. He also collects Talladega County bottles and related items and has what he calls a subcollection of Buffalo Rock and Mountain Dew Willy the Hillbilly bottles. Jake started the Lincoln Bottle Show in Lincoln, Alabama in 2016 and remains show chairman. He started the show to preserve the hobby of collecting and to help fellow collectors connect with each other for knowledge to be passed and collections to grow. Jake says, collect what you like. The great thing about bottle collecting is that there is no wrong “theme” of bottles to collect.
EricMcGuireMug_BW Eric McGuire, FOHBC Western Region Director, is a California native who has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area most of his life. He attended local schools and completed his formal education at San Francisco State University (MA 1973). Eric entered the field of environmental planning and retired from a 30-year career in domestic water supply in 2008. He began his bottle collecting interest in 1960, and along with digging, and otherwise acquiring bottles, Eric has always been an avid student of all aspects of glass making as well as a researcher of the history of the people who produced the bottles. Beginning in the mid-1960s his name can be found on many articles relating to bottles and glass. Eric’s primary interest has been focused on the geographical area of the Western U.S. He is a life member of the FOHBC, and lives in Petaluma, California, with his wife, Lisa.