June 19, 2016

THIS WEEK IN CALIFORNIA: 3,000+ Cannabis Professionals Gather at NCIA’s Cannabis Business Summit in Oakland, Including ‘Who’s Who’ of Cannabis Industry Leaders

As California prepares to consider cannabis legalization, the most influential marijuana business event in the industry starts TOMORROW in Oakland, featuring CA Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, Numi Tea CEO Ahmed Rahim, industry leaders, federal lawmakers, and three days of in-depth education and networking


Oakland, CA – As California looks ahead to a potential vote on adult-use marijuana legalization in November, the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) will hold its third annual national conference, the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, in Oakland this week.

More than 3,000 cannabis professionals from 16 countries will gather at the Oakland Marriott City Center, June 20-22, including a “who’s who” of industry leaders and policy makers. The Summit takes place at a crucial time in history, with California’s Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) ballot initiative expected to be certified for November voting, and the campaign fully underway.

(For information on media passes for the Summit, please see the bottom of this release.)

California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom will deliver the policy keynote address on Tuesday, June 21, at 11:00am. Newsom, who is running for Governor of California in 2018, is a key supporter for marijuana reform and legalization and a high-profile advocate for the benefits of embracing a legitimate cannabis industry.

Numi Organic Tea CEO and co-founder Ahmed Rahim will deliver the business keynote on Tuesday at 10:15am, sharing insights into his company’s embrace of the “quadruple bottom line” approach, best practices in moving toward organics and fair trade, and the importance and benefits of connecting with the local community. Rahim will be joined by Nutiva CEO and founder John Roulac and Denver Relief Consulting founding partner Kayvan Khalatbari.

NCIA, the only national trade association representing the businesses of the legal marijuana industry, moved the Cannabis Business Summit to California this year after two years in Denver.

Other Summit highlights include:

    • Putting It To a Vote: A Hard Look at Ballot Measures and Post- Election Predictions” with senior leaders of the Marijuana Policy Project, the Drug Policy Alliance, and NCIA (Tuesday at 2:00pm)
    • “New Market Segments: Skincare, Health, and Beauty Products” (Tuesday at 3:00pm)
    • “What an Investor Wants: Insights from Investors for Securing Financing and Avoiding Risk” (Tuesday at 4:00pm)
    • “Keeping the Soul of the Movement Alive in the Industry” with Steve DeAngelo of Harborside Health Center and Cody Bass of Tahoe Wellness Collective (Wednesday at 10:00am)
    • Best Approaches to Federal Legalization” with John Hudak of the Brookings Institute and Sarah Trumble of Third Way (Wednesday at 11:15am)
    • “Money Talks: Updates on the Cannabis Banking Issue” (Wednesday at 1:15pm)
    • Golden Opportunity: The Industry’s Role in California Legalization” with leaders involved in California’s adult-use legalization effort (Wednesday at 3:15pm)

A full list of speakers and a detailed agenda, can be found at

Several topic-oriented tracks will give attendees the opportunity to focus on their areas of expertise. Tracks offered include:

  • The Fine Print: Money, Law, and Your Business
  • Cultivation and Processing
  • Running Your Cannabusiness
  • Policy and Reform
  • Medical Applications of Cannabis
  • Leading Edge: Emerging Topics in the Cannabis Industry

Featured educational sessions will highlight some of the industry’s most influential pioneers and innovators.

Media passes for the Cannabis Business Summit may be requested by emailing Please include the full name of the individual seeking a pass, the media outlet represented, and an email address and phone number where he or she can be reached. While NCIA will make every effort to honor legitimate requests, capacity is limited, so passes are not guaranteed.


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