NCIA hosts a weekly podcast with guest members who share their experiences, challenges, and successes operating businesses serving the legal cannabis industry. The show is hosted by NCIA’s Communications Manager, Bethany Moore.
Tune in to this episode to learn more about the marketing technology for cannabis with John Shearman, Vice President of Marketing and Cannabis Business Lead at Applied DNA Sciences.
John has over 30 years of deep enterprise and advertising agency experience across all marketing, sales, and IT disciplines. John’s experience allows him to advise on structuring sound strategies that address business goals and objectives. His extensive technology background stems from working with several leading technology companies throughout his career.
John spearheads the Applied DNA Sciences cannabis vertical leading the vision, strategy, and product development for this emerging market. John also oversees the marketing for the entire company driving the marketing strategy for its other core verticals. During these times, and always, customer safety/consumer safety is crucial, and protects the consumer as well as the company or brand producing the product. We talk more about how important it is to know where your product is coming from, if it is authentic from a licensed producer, or if it is from the unregulated illicit market. That brings us to the amazing technology and innovation in our industry we've seen over the last few years, and how we miss walking the expo halls to see all the cool exhibitor booths out there. We don’t think the mainstream public knows that there’s more to it than growing the plant and rolling the joint so we talk about how technological innovation has crossed into the cannabis industry and more.
Tune in to this look-back episode as we wrap up the year 2020 and reflect on #10YearsofNCIA.
Ryan Douglas And Nina Simosko Join us today to help celebrate 10 years of NCIA.
The Hurdles For A Cannabis Startup with Ryan Douglas of Ryan Douglas Cultivation. As Master Grower from 2013 to 2016, he directed cultivation for Tweed Inc., Canada’s largest licensed producer of medical cannabis and the flagship subsidiary of Canopy Growth Corporation. As one of the company’s first employees, he helped drive the organization’s early success by designing the production facility, selecting the genetics, and hiring and training staff to produce 70,000 plants and process 6 tons of dry cannabis annually. His work at Tweed has been featured in Vice, New York Times, Bloomberg News, and on National Public Radio. The cannabis industry in its current form is relatively new and fresh and still quite entrepreneurial. A lot of “start-ups” being formed and launched, especially with every year, new states legalizing medical or adult-use cannabis. There’s a lot of people listening to this show right now who might be launching cannabis businesses in their states soon. We discuss what advice Ryan has as someone who has worked directly with start-ups in the cannabis space. Also, some common challenges or hurdles that start-up operators might not think about.
The Future Of Cannabis As An Essential Business with Nina Simosko. Nina serves as Chief Revenue Officer for Akerna, a global regulatory compliance technology company in the cannabis space. Akerna’s companies and investments also include MJ Freeway, Ample Organics, Last Call Analytics, Leaf Data Systems, solo sciences, and ZolTrain. Nina brings more than 20 years of technology industry experience to her role. We talk about current events, and the good news during all this is that cannabis businesses have been deemed “essential”. But there are some differences in how we’re operating. There’s delivery and curbside pickup etc so we walk through that customer-to-sale process now and how it’s different. Looking even further into the future here, we ask if she is anticipating any further changes than what we’ve already seen. As well as How will dispensaries reach their customers and what will be new and different in how we’re operating in this new normal. Nina is extremely well suited to her current role with Akerna. She oversees all of the company’s revenue generation streams, builds strategies to drive revenue growth, and plays a pivotal role in aligning revenue generation processes across the entire organization.
Tune in to this look-back episode as we wrap up the year 2020 and reflect on #10YearsofNCIA.
Autumn Shelton and Andy Poticha join us for another episode celebrating 10 years of NCIA!
Shifts In Cannabis Stigma During COVID-19 Autumn Shelton, Chief Financial Officer of Autumn Brands. Autumn is a partner as well as CFO of Autumn Brands, a 50 percent woman-owned cannabis business located in sunny coastal Carpinteria, Santa Barbara County, California. In her position as CFO, Autumn is a strategic decision-maker for the family farm, which started in Holland more than 100 years ago. Along with overseeing the company’s financials, she is in charge of legal compliance on the local and state levels. Autumn champions the health and wellness benefits of cannabis and is committed to cultivation free of pesticides and other harmful chemicals. We start by talking about current affairs, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the world. The silver lining is that cannabis was deemed essential in most states where it was legal during massive shutdowns. This implies that the public, and governments, see the value of cannabis. We talk about what shifts in the stigma have happened against cannabis since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Having gone through this process and now Autumn is rockin’ and rollin’ and in business, we talk about the advice Autumn has for individuals who are starting this process. As well as Any obstacles Autumn has come across that she can advise others on especially If you’re a woman business owner.
Cannabis Facilities In COVID-19 with Andy Poticha. Andy is a Principal at Cannabis Facility Construction, a national, full-service cannabis facility design-build industry leader. Since 2015, the company has renovated more than 30 cultivation facilities, processing centers, and dispensary projects in nine states across the country. Andy has been on the show once before about a year ago, so we’ve heard a bit about him and his background already and how you got into the cannabis industry. So today we focus on what’s been happening in the last year since he was on the show. We’re only halfway into the year 2020 and already the landscape of the cannabis industry has shifted in many ways. The most important of which to us is that cannabis was deemed an “ESSENTIAL” business during the coronavirus shutdowns. We dive into how cannabis companies can continue to expand facilities during COVID, and what they can expect from their contractors as it relates to compliance with social distancing rules and keeping on track for deadlines, etc. The reality of it is the show must go on. So we talk about what’s happening in Andy’s world, and HOW it’s happening.
Tune in to this look-back episode as we wrap up the year 2020 and reflect on #10YearsofNCIA.
Tune in to this throwback episode Debby Goldsberry And Bryan Passman join us for our 10 Years Of NCIA episode series talking about Community And Cannabis and talent acquisition.
Debby Goldsberry, CEO of Magnolia Wellness, has nearly 30 years of experience as a leader in the medical and adult-use marijuana industry. Magnolia Wellness, an award-winning dispensary in Oakland, CA, and also co-founded the Berkeley Patients Group (BPG) medical cannabis collective in 1999, directing its growth for over 10 years, from 1999 – 2010. Goldsberry is the author of Starting and Running a Marijuana Business (Idiot’s Guide), a well-known industry guide, and was also a top-rated mentor at Gateway Incubator in Oakland, CA, and is dedicated to helping entrepreneurs succeed. She is a former board member at California NORML and the Marijuana Policy Project and is a Professor Emeritus at Oaksterdam University. We brought Debby on the show, partially, because her dispensary is one of several stories we heard about being impacted by civil unrest and protests. We wanted to check-in and see how everyone is doing and what they have been doing to recover as well as deal with damage to her dispensary. Typically Oakland is a very competitive sport for dispensaries, even though hers has been around a very long time. Adult-use means lots of new spots have popped up in the neighborhood that was also impacted by property damage in recent months. Outside of what she’s doing with her specific business, she’s also very involved in the community in general. We talk about what she and her team are doing as far as conversations with the city and law enforcement.
Bryan Passman is the founder of the cannabis industry talent acquisition firm Hunter Esquire and has more than 18 years of experience in executive search and recruitment. Founded in 2017, the experienced team is dedicated to providing a full-service, white-glove approach to every one of our clients. We are happy that “Cannabis Is Essential” during these tough times and we’re hopefully coming out of the tight restrictions here slowly and safely. We talk about if Bryan is seeing impacts from COVID-19 on the hiring world as some companies perhaps had to scale down to save their budgets. Looking at the pace of how quickly our industry has moved in just the last few years as laws change so rapidly and licenses roll out, companies have been established, grown, and scaled up so incredibly fast on time. With that sort of growth, it means they perhaps had to hire handfuls or dozens of people in a short amount of time. Bryan explains how one carefully hires a team so rapidly while still getting the right people.
Tune in to this look-back episode as we wrap up the year 2020 and reflect on #10YearsofNCIA.
Rhiannon Anderson and David Hua join us today to help celebrate 10 years of NCIA!
The future of tradeshow marketing with Rhiannon Anderson, Chief Marketing Officer at Steelhead Productions. Rhiannon has served as the CMO and Co-Owner at Steelhead Productions, who specialize in custom rental exhibits for some of the most exciting brands in the country and has been awarded Exhibitor Magazine’s Top 40 Providers in the event industry. Rhiannon oversees all of Steelhead’s business development, as well as internal and external communications. In that role, she has guided the company through the greatest recession of our time and gone on to help grow the business by over 630%, while becoming one of Inc. 5000’s Fastest-Growing Companies in America. Rhiannon’s company’s role in the cannabis industry is helping cannabis brands in an exhibitor setting like at trade shows. We’ve all seen the gigantic expo floor at NCIA’s national conferences, but social distancing means that’s going to look different whenever those restrictions relax. We talk about the future of tradeshow marketing and event marketing, as well as what Rhiannon is seeing or predicting when it comes to this subject.
Cannabis Jobs During Covid-19 with Meadow CEO and Co-Founder, David Hua. Meadow is a software company built from the ground up for California cannabis, and Y-Combinator’s first start-up to operate in the cannabis space. Meadow’s all-in-one platform allows dispensaries to sell products, manage menus and inventory, reward customers, dispatch delivery and pick-up orders, and create exceptional in-store experiences for customers. Meadow has been Headquartered in San Francisco since 2014. Hua has also collaborated with California’s cannabis community and California regulators to draft, implement, and provide stakeholder feedback of medical and Adult-Use regulations. Hua sits on the boards of the California Cannabis Industry Association, the Cannabis Distribution Association, as well as the NCIA Retail Committee. The cannabis industry in California has had some ups and downs in the transition to adult-use laws from Prop 64, and the COVID-19 crisis is no exception. In Colorado, as in California, they almost had legal cannabis shut down alongside bars and restaurants. The announcement was reversed in about 3 hours after everyone rushed the dispensaries. We talk to David about what it looked like in California and how they as cannabis software providers reacted. Cannabis is essential but federally illegal, so they didn’t initially get access to SBA COVID-19 financial relief. Perlmutter and Blumenauer introduced a bill specifically to include cannabis. We did get SAFE Banking Language in the 2nd coronavirus relief package approved out of the House of Reps, even tho some of the senates complained about seeing the word ‘cannabis’ in the bill. David explains his thoughts on this reaction even tho the industry has been an unbelievable job creator.
Tune in to this episode to hear from NCIA's Marketing and Advertising Committee with Jeanine Moss of Outfront Solutions, Kary Radestock of Hippo Premium Packaging, and Josefine Nowitz of Cannabis Creative Group. They all serve on NCIA’s Marketing and Advertising Committee – developing best practices in cannabis industry marketing; opening dialogues with major media outlets that ban most or all cannabis-related advertising; holding in-person or virtual educational events for NCIA members; and developing educational content that supports the industry.
We dive into how they each contributed their own areas of expertise and collaborated toward the launch of a new brand, and how all those pieces came together. This all happened during a global pandemic so this was done mostly remotely. Our guests describe what challenges came about during this discovery, design, decision-making, and ultimately the launch phase. Of course, we talk about what it really takes to launch a new brand from start to finish.
Tune in to this episode to learn more about NCIA's Social Equity Scholarship Program with Tahir Johnson, NCIA Membership Manager, DEI Manager. We start by talking about the committee itself. NCIA has 13 different industry sector committees like Marketing and Advertising, Cultivation, and so on, and we have an active Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee as well. We dive into who is serving on the committee and what are they focused on right now.
The Social Equity Scholarship Program is another aspect of our overall DEI Program, and we’ve already given over 100 annual NCIA memberships to equity operators in various states. Tahir has had several of our scholarship recipients on his podcast, The Cannabis Diversity Report, so if you're interested, that’s a great place to go hear their stories.
He is responsible for driving membership and expanding the organization’s presence on the East Coast. Prior to joining NCIA, Tahir spent most of his career in Wealth Management and had clients that included corporate executives, entertainers, business owners, and other high-net-worth individuals. He began his career with Morgan Stanley where he served on the Diversity Council. Passionate about cannabis he left his career as a financial advisor and began working as a patient counselor and social media director at a local dispensary. Having started several ancillary businesses, along with his experience as part of a team that has applied for cultivation and processing licenses, he has a unique insight into the needs and challenges of business owners in the industry. Tahir was born in Trenton, NJ, and has resided in the Washington, D.C. area since attending Howard University, where he majored in Marketing.
In this episode, learn more about data-driven cannabis supply chain with Camille Roistacher. Camille is the Founder and CEO of Voyage Distribution, a data-driven cannabis supply chain company, and Wyllow, an inclusive cannabis flower brand for the conscious connoisseur.
Roistacher is a fearless woman of color from Pasadena who began dipping her toes in the leadership pool by becoming Pasadena’s Rose Queen in 2006 when the media dubbed her as a “natural leader” who was “destined for royalty.” After working her way up through several management roles in the tech field at Fortune 500 companies, Camille brought her expertise to the cannabis space in 2018 by launching Voyage Distribution and quickly began serving some of the top cannabis brands in California. It’s interesting to see the ways the industry is expanding and becoming more sophisticated and streamlined, and one thing we've seen is the wholesale distribution model which can house multiple brands and products, rather than the vertical integration models we’ve traditionally seen where a single licensee must grow, produce, sell, the whole she-bang. This wholesale model is different, so Camille explains how that works and so much more.
Tune in to this episode to hear more about the 2020 election and cannabis with NCIA's Director of Public Policy, Andrew Kline, and NCIA's CEO and Co-founder, Aaron Smith. The NCIA team has had just a few days to digest and process the results of the 2020 U.S. election, including five new states who passed cannabis reform laws for medical or adult-use which is really exciting for our movement and industry.
We think it’s safe to say that we are clear on who the next President and Vice President will be on January 20th, 2021. While we didn’t see any real federal action one way or another relating to cannabis these last four years, we talk about what we can gather about the impact of a Biden-Harris White House administration might be on cannabis policy reform. As far as good news goes, we’re obviously super excited about five new states voting to pass medical or adult-use marijuana laws last week. Cannabis was a big winner yet again this year in South Dakota, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, and Arizona, so we discuss with Aaron and Andrew what this means for our industry going forward.
Tune into this episode to learn more about the transition from office space to virtual space with Lynn Saladini, of Ath Power Consulting. Lynn is a passionate believer that trust creates strong relationships between people, resulting in an optimal, collaborative environment. Lynn is a driver of an effective strategy for measured growth and client success and has served Ath Power Consulting’s clients since the firm launched in 1997. For more than ten years she has navigated the shift from office space to virtual space, expertise in demand now more than ever before.
Ath Power Consulting is a premier provider of research and customer experience solutions, offering survey and mystery shop research, competitive intelligence, compliance auditing, market analyses, employee training, and strategic consulting. For over two decades, we have helped our clients improve customer retention, build brand loyalty and advocacy, deepen employee engagement, measure compliance, maximize performance, and increase profitability – distinguishing them from their competition and giving them a commanding edge in the marketplace.
The cannabis industry has been around long enough now that we can actually study the industry, study customers, study business processes, and even compliance and policies, and can gain some insights and conclusions from that research. We see more opportunities almost every year as new states pass legislation or ballot initiatives to legalize cannabis for medical or adult-use, thus creating a new industry for that state. Each individual state is its own animal, California looks different from Colorado, which looks different from Florida. We talk insights about some of these state-specific research studies she’s done and much more.
Tune in to this podcast's 200th episode to learn more about safe vaping and inhalation ingredient regulations with Dr. Jeffrey Raber, The WERC Shop. Dr. Raber received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Southern California with an emphasis on developing new synthetic methodologies useful in pharmaceutical drug discovery and manufacturing efforts. Dr. Raber was named to the USA Today 1997 All-USA College Academic Team for his research accomplishments. Dr. Raber entered cannabis in 2010 and has published 5 peer-reviewed articles on cannabis topics.
The Werc Shop was founded in 2010 as a sustainable chemistry company first focused on cannabis. Initial services began by offering analytical testing to the California medicinal market. The company evolved its service offering to begin providing private label contract manufacturing services at the end of 2013 and subsequently expanded its presence to additional states, mostly on the West Coast.
NCIA published a policy paper last year about safe vaping after the public disaster of the vaping crisis. Everyone is alarmed and the ingredients we are putting into our lungs are indeed super important. So we talk more about safe vaping, and the inhalation ingredient regulations that are needed. We also dive into the specific states and what they’re doing at the state level on establishing new regulations.
Tune in to learn more about Premium Cannabis Packaging with Kary Radestock, CEO of Hippo Premium Packaging. Kary launched Hippo Premium Packaging in March 2016, offering an array of services to the cannabis market, including Marketing Strategy, Brand Development, Social Media, Public Relations, Graphic and Web Design, and of course, Printing and Packaging.
Radestock brings over 20 years of award-winning print and packaging expertise and leads a team of the nation’s top brand builders, marketers, and print production experts. Kary’s company has been serving the cannabis industry with packaging needs for years, so she has seen a lot of new players entering the market. People come into the cannabis industry from other mainstream industries where one might expect the best practices in their industry to be the same for the cannabis industry, but they quickly find that it’s different. We talk a good bit about best practices, good management practices, as well as how proper planning can go a long way towards the success of your business.
The cannabis industry seems to operate at its own speed sometimes. We like to call it “dog years” so one year for a cannabis company seems to feel like three, or seven. We dive into how this plays out when planning a brand launch or specific product launch and much more.
The rulemaking process in cannabis with Liz Mason and Tiffany Coleman.
Liz is the Director of Operations at Aurum Labs, one of the first fully certified cannabis testing labs in Colorado. Liz and her husband, Luke, started Aurum Labs back in 2014, both of their backgrounds and degrees are in chemistry, biochemistry, and molecular biology. In her time at Aurum she has helped to grow the business substantially, expanding it into the nationwide hemp market and helping to increase the testing services offered by the lab. Liz is the current co-chair for the NCIA Hemp Committee and Founder of Aurum Services, the Hemp Division of Aurum Labs that caters testing services specifically to the hemp industry.
Tiffany Coleman studied Chemistry at the University of Missouri Kansas City and has over 15 years of experience with best practices in pharmaceuticals. She came to cannabis to help keep patients and consumers safe by using those best practices and work towards standardized sampling and testing in the industry. She serves as chair of the NCIA Scientific Advisory Committee and founder of Cassin Consulting to help cannabis companies establish quality systems using Six Sigma and Good Manufacturing Practices.
There’s an important call to action for our listeners to get involved in the rulemaking process. Of course, NCIA files amicus briefs and submits comments to various government agencies as needed on the topic of cannabis and sometimes this gets really specific. Our guests explain more about what we’re doing in this case regarding the DEA and hemp, as well as break down the problem and the solution.
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Tune in to this episode to learn more about modernizing the business landscape of cannabis with Sean Dawson. Sean is the Director of IT Solutions at Office1.
Office1’s mission is to innovate and progressively modernize the inefficient business landscape by providing a proactive, personalized, and eco-friendly office technology solution from planning to implementation and optimization. One solution from one company – Office1.
Sean seeks to understand the heart of a challenge and then focuses on creating practical and timely solutions. He is an avid DIYer, gardener, and master house re-doer who loves spending his free time with his wife, four children, and six chickens.
We start by talking about our emerging industry, and how we’re just starting to scale out of the “start-up, entrepreneurial” stage of business and becoming more sophisticated. This means more technology and automation, including our favorite Seed To Sale Software. We talk about what else companies should be thinking about when it comes to their technology solutions at this stage of the game when they’re starting to scale up. Typically a business owner hires an IT company to help them solve problems and scale their businesses up, and let’s say they’re experts at growing cannabis or extracting cannabis oil, but not so much on the technology side. Sean discusses with us a few examples of a company that came to him without any solid technology systems in place and how he helped them.
Tune in to this episode to learn more about the do's and don't's of hiring your team with Viridian Staffing's Kara Bradford, and Joanna Monroe. Today we talk to two powerful women in the cannabis space. We dive into the background of the company, Viridian Staffing, as well as how they are handling COVID-19. We also discuss their advice for the hiring process and how they have been going about it during these unprecedented times.
Kara Bradford is the CEO of Viridian Staffing – which was founded in 2013 to provide not only HR consulting but also direct placements, consultants, and specialized temporary staffing solutions in the cannabis industry, and was the cannabis industry’s first staffing/HR-related company to become a member of NCIA in 2014. Known as the godmother of cannabis industry recruiting, Kara has been an HR professional for over 20 years. Her career has spanned multiple Fortune 100 companies and start-ups in a wide range of industries. Kara also sits on NCIA’s Human Resources Committee currently as chair emeritus.
Joanna Monroe is a senior executive, C-Suite adviser, and board director with a proven track record of helping companies transform and grow profits while reducing risk. With close to 25 years in staffing, she is an expert on human capital management, human resources, and employment law and is highly regarded for implementing large scale operational, compliance, and legal initiatives that contribute to high-performance business results and improve the bottom line.
Tune in to learn more about Adapting During COVID-19 with Dave Roberson, Kukuza, and Javier Hernandez of Humbleroot. Dave Roberson was on the show in June 2019, and a lot has changed since then.
Dave Roberson is the CEO of Kukuza Associates, a business advisory firm that solely focuses on the finance and accounting needs of cannabis companies. Its rapid assessment evaluates cannabis companies’ finance readiness and agility; and recently, the online tool helped launch one mobile dispensary’s revenue growth which doubled during the pandemic. Kukuza means “growth” and “potential” in Swahili, capturing how the firm propels clients ahead and guides them to greatness.
Also on the show is Javier Hernandez from Humbleroot, which offers same-day cannabis delivery throughout the greater Sacramento area and beyond. The company was established in 2015 to break the stereotypes of the marijuana industry. They believed medication could be delivered in a responsible and respectful fashion that could be recognized, locally, and nationwide, and laid the foundation and generated a pathway for future delivery services, by co-creating the California Cannabis Courier Association and advocating legislation.
We talk about some of the challenges they’ve seen their clients facing these last few months during COVID-19 restrictions. We’ve heard about some of the changes being made like curbside pickup, an increase in online pre-orders for dispensary customers, etc. So we dive into what else they have been seeing as well as changes to methods in how they do business.
Tune in to learn more about Improving Product Safety And Distribution with Tyler Williams, CSQ. Tyler is the founder and Chief Technical Officer of Cannabis Safety & Quality (CSQ). Over the years, Tyler has diligently worked with various industry stakeholders and conducted sample audits on several cannabis cultivators and manufacturers to create the first global cannabis safety & quality Certification Scheme. Tyler currently sits on the Policy Council and the Cannabis Manufacturing Committee for the NCIA, in addition to serving as a member of the National Industrial Hemp Council (NIHC) and the Safe Quality Food Institute’s (SQFI) Cannabis Working Group.
In 2019, Tyler started a non-profit organization called Show Me Food Safety. This organization provides resources to small food manufacturers and growers with help in improving their food safety practices, getting on the shelves of local grocery stores, and improve the overall health of consumers.
Even with a detailed roadmap and double and triple-checking everything, we live in a world of uncertainty and chaos, so something is bound to fall through the cracks or go wrong, no matter how carefully you prepare. Tyler stated that there are some things that cannot be prevented by following basic cGMPs. We dive into where cGMPs may miss the mark and more.
Tyler recently contributed a blog to NCIA’s website about getting a third-party audit, which is essentially asking experts OUTSIDE of one's company, not within, to look around, “check under the hood, check the fluid levels,” etc. Tyler tells us some of the benefits of getting a third-party audit, as well as why a cannabis company should do this.
Tune in to this episode to learn more about Black Dog LED with Kevin Frender who serves as Chief Technology Officer and Chief Science Officer. Kevin has been growing indoors under artificial lights in Colorado for over 25 years, using every commercially-available lighting technology available along the way. Over the years, he has grown thousands of different kinds of plants, from lettuce, peppers, and tomatoes to mangoes, orchids, and water lilies - all without the sun. Over four years ago Kevin turned his hobby into a full-time job when he joined Black Dog LED.
We know Kevin is in the business of lighting, which the cannabis industry uses HEAVILY. Particularly because many facilities grow in controlled indoor environments. For those of us who don’t work in the grow, we just know that you turn the lights on and off when you need them, but we talk more about how the light spectrum is used and what other ways it helps plants grow healthy. The lighting certainly gives off heat which is an important component of growing cannabis, temperature management, and regulation, so the plants get too hot perhaps. Then you have to cool things down with an HVAC system. We dive into how we can use lights while still keeping that energy conservation issue in mind as we continue to talk about sustainability in our industry.
Black Dog LED was founded in early 2010 when the founder spent over a year looking for legitimate LED grow lights to fill his and his friends’ growing needs. Black Dog LED is indoor gardening enthusiasts, and their passion for their work comes from the desire to create a quality product they want to use in their own gardens and their friends want to use in theirs. To accomplish this, they are pushing the limits of what is currently known about using artificial light to grow plants. Some of the research they are doing in BDL Labs, their research and development department, is being conducted for the first time ever. BDL is creating lights that, because of their combination of spectrum and power, are better for growing plants than anything produced before.
Tune in to this episode to hear more about Community And Cannabis with Debby Goldsberry, CEO of Magnolia Wellness. Debby has nearly 30 years of experience as a leader in the medical and adult-use marijuana industry. Magnolia Wellness is an award-winning dispensary in Oakland, CA, and Debby also co-founded the Berkeley Patients Group (BPG) medical cannabis collective in 1999, directing its growth for over 10 years, from 1999 – 2010. Goldsberry is the author of Starting and Running a Marijuana Business (Idiot’s Guide), a well-known industry guide and was also a top-rated mentor at Gateway Incubator in Oakland, CA, and is dedicated to helping entrepreneurs succeed. She is a former board member at California NORML and the Marijuana Policy Project and is a Professor Emeritus at Oaksterdam University.
We brought Debby on the show, partially, because her dispensary is one of several stories we heard about being impacted by civil unrest and protests. We wanted to check-in and see how everyone is doing and what they have been doing to recover as well as deal with damage to her dispensary. Typically Oakland is a very competitive spot for dispensaries, even though hers has been around a very long time. New adult-use laws in California means lots of new spots have popped up in the neighborhood who were also impacted by property damage in recent months. Outside of what she’s doing with her specific business, she’s also very involved in the community in general. We talk about what she and her team are doing as far as conversations with the city and law enforcement.
Tune in to this episode to learn more about NCIA's Equity Scholarship Program with Tahir Johnson, Membership Manager and DEI Coordinator for NCIA. He is responsible for driving membership and expanding the organization’s presence on the East Coast. Tahir was born in Trenton, NJ, and has resided in the Washington, D.C. area since attending Howard University, where he majored in Marketing. First, we cover the basics of NCIA's Diversity Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Committee, which is one of NCIA’s 13 member-driven committees. Tahir is working closely with the DEI committee, so we get an update on what’s been going on so far this year and what’s around the corner and in the works.
Next, taking it the next step to NCIA’s brand new Equity Scholarship Program which Tahir is also heading up, and we’re all very excited about this program here at the organization. Tahir talks more about that program, why we’re doing it, and how people can find out more. Also of course NCIA has stepped up our digital game even more during the pandemic and time of social distancing, and that includes educational webinars. One of these upcoming webinars on September 1st is one that Tahir is also leading and coordinating. There are some amazing experts joining him on this one. Tahir tells us more about what he’ll be covering and who will be joining him
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.