Member Blog: What I Learned from Serving as an NCIA Committee Officer

Member Blog: What I Learned from Serving as an NCIA Committee Officer

The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) is a business-member organization of professionals from every sector of the legal cannabis industry, from seed to sale. I finished my tenure as Chair of the NCIA Education Committee (EC) in December 2023. I joined the EC in October of 2019 as a committee member and sequentially served as committee Organizer, Vice Chair, and Chair. I now have colleagues and friends in the cannabis industry due to networking through the EC, NCIA’s other 13 committees, and my participation in NCIA conferences, regional events, and Lobby Days.

People in the cannabis industry have a passion for their work that is unlike any other I have seen. NCIA members are professionals in their field, working as medical doctors, Ph.D.s, accountants, lawyers, insurance agents, and marketing gurus, among others. Among these professionals, I felt seen and supported.

As a committee, the members were encouraged by the NCIA staff to pursue our interests and direction for the committee. There was no NCIA agenda for our work. As NCIA members, we were free to choose our path for committee projects.

As an officer, I had access to the other NCIA committee officers in our monthly all-committee call. Each committee reported their work-in-progress and announced finished projects in the form of webinars, blog posts, or white papers. The content of the website is driven by the members, and much of the content is publicly available. It takes an army to deliver cannabis products to consumers, and that army forms at NCIA.

I have listened in awe to NCIA members articulate their knowledge, and others have written beautifully. NCIA has a strong voice in Washington for the mission of federal legalization of cannabis. NCIA members write talking points on their areas of expertise and freely share cannabis knowledge for the betterment of the industry. Members have an opportunity to shape policy at the state, federal, and international levels. 

Before NCIA, I was not aware of the reality of the steps for passing legislation in Washington. I have learned about the long process and have been encouraged to use my own voice, from contacting my state and federal legislators to participating in lobbying organized by NCIA at their annual Lobby Days in Washington. I walked from congressional to senate office to office with a team to talk with staffers. I found the staffers open to the conversation about legalizing cannabis, and I learned from a few of them. Approaching a lawmaker as a member of NCIA carries more weight than being a lone concerned citizen.

The cannabis industry has businesses struggling to remain afloat, and membership revenue has declined. If your company is not an NCIA member, ask yourself if you are willing to lose your opportunity to shape the future of the cannabis industry. Then, sign up for membership and make a difference.

Author & Company Information

Kathy Knutson PhD

Dr. Kathy Knutson is the Food Safety and Cannabis Subject Matter Expert for ImEPIK. She consults internationally for companies that manufacture food, dietary supplements, and cannabis-infused products. Knutson is an expert in recall investigations, problem-solving, training and provides consulting services around compliance with FDA regulations. She also excels at conducting hazard analyses, risk assessments, and recall investigations to determine the root cause of issues and how to best control pathogens, specializing in developing Environmental Monitoring Programs for ready-to-eat foods.

California Cannabis Regulations: From Policy to Practice | Policy Matters | 02.08.24

Related Posts

Join the movement

NCIA is leading the cannabis industry's unified and coordinated campaign to ensure our business sector is treated fairly and has the opportunity to reach its full potential. Now - more than ever - is the time to invest in your business and the future of the industry by becoming a member.

This site uses cookies. By using this site or closing this notice, you agree to the use of cookies and our privacy policy.