Built On Purpose
Cannabis Industry Leader, Andrew DeAngelo

Cannabis Industry Leader, Andrew DeAngelo

September 21, 2021

Andrew DeAngelo, Cannabis Industry Consultant and Strategic Advisor, Co-founder of Harborside & Last Prisoner Project, Founder of Andrew DeAngelo Consulting

 

Andrew DeAngelo is a visionary leader with a proven track record of enacting systemic social change and developing best practices in cannabis — he is the very definition of a trailblazer and someone who has proudly walked the road less traveled.

 

During his almost 13-year tenure at Harborside, where he currently serves as an advisor, Andrew has pioneered legal cannabis business processes and provided groundbreaking political engagement and thought leadership to the cannabis community. Andrew also lends his vast cannabis business and political expertise as a consultant for hire to the global community at large, including several strategic partnerships with the world's leading cannabis-centric service firms.

 

Andrew led the design and development of gold-standard cannabis retail by innovating many “firsts” for the industry. These include: introducing CBD medicines to heal severely epileptic children as documented in Discovery Channel’s Weed Wars, implementing the first lab-testing program in the history of cannabis dispensing, creating child-resistant packaging for edibles, standardizing inventory tracking, initiating senior outreach, and successfully preventing the federal government from seizing Harborside in forfeiture actions against the company in 2012.

 

Andrew is co-founder and Chairperson of the Board for the non-profit Last Prisoner Project (LPP). LPP’s mission is to free and re-integrate all cannabis prisoners on earth into mainstream society. Since its inception in 2019, LPP has successfully re-integrated the formerly incarcerated and 2020 will be the year LPP frees its first constituent. 

 

Andrew is also a founding Board of Directors member of the California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA), the premier cannabis industry trade association in California, where he served from 2013 to 2020 building the organization from zero to 500 member companies. CCIA continues to represent the industry in California as it works on reforming Prop 64 to improve the legal and regulatory framework for cannabis trade throughout the state. 

 

Graduating with honors from Chapman University with a BFA degree in Communications & Theatre, Andrew began his political career as an activist while studying for his MFA in acting at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. Over two decades as an activist, Andrew worked on a variety of voter initiatives which legalized medical and adult-use cannabis in San Francisco, Washington D.C, and the State of California. 

 

As an actor, Andrew starred in the feature film Mary Jane’s Not A Virgin Anymore which premiered at Sundance in 1997, and on national television shows like Superior Court (1987); Homicide: Life on the Street (1998); as well as dozens of plays across the United States. Andrew also stars in Discovery Channel’s reality television series Weed Wars (2011, 2012). Between 2002 and 2005, Andrew served as a professor at Chapman University teaching acting.

 

Andrew and his brother Steve recently formed DeAngelo Brothers Productions (DAB), which intends to produce, support, and distribute cannabis content over a variety of mediums and platforms. DAB’s mission is “to create new mythologies for cannabis in pop culture, smashing the stigma of the lazy stoner and replacing it with fresh and positive representations of cannabis in society.”

 

As a speaker, Andrew has appeared at the MJBusiness Daily Conference in Las Vegas, ICBC, NCIA conferences in Chicago/Boston/San Jose, Emerald Conference, and the U.S Cannabis Conference in Miami. Andrew is scheduled to present at 2020 conferences across the globe. Courses on cannabis business training led by Andrew are available online through Green Flower Media. 

For more information, please visit: https://www.andrewdeangelo.com

 

Connect:

 

Andrew on Twitter

Andrew on Instagram

Andrew on Facebook

Andrew on LinkedIn

 

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

NORML Founder, Keith Stroup, Esq.

NORML Founder, Keith Stroup, Esq.

August 31, 2021

Keith Stroup is a Washington, DC public-interest attorney who founded NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) in 1970. 

Stroup obtained his undergraduate degree in political science from the University of Illinois in 1965, and in 1968 he graduated from Georgetown Law School in Washington, DC. Stroup first smoked marijuana when he was a first-year law student and has been a regular smoker since.

Following two years as staff counsel for the National Commission on Product Safety following law school, a job that allowed him to avoid the Vietnam War with a critical skills deferment, Stroup founded NORML and ran the organization through 1979, during which time 11 states decriminalized minor marijuana offenses. Stroup has also practiced criminal law, lobbied on Capitol Hill for family farmers and artists, and for several years served as executive director of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL).



In 1994 Stroup resumed his work with NORML, rejoining the board of directors and serving again as Executive Director through 2004. He is currently NORML’s Legal Counsel.


In 1992 Stroup was the recipient of the Richard J. Dennis Drugpeace Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Drug Policy Reform presented by the Drug Policy Foundation, Washington, DC. In 2010 he received the Al Horn Award for Advancing the Cause of Justice from the NORML Legal Committee. And in 2012 Stroup received the High Times Lifetime Achievement Award.

In 2013 Stroup published the history of NORML entitled It’s NORML To Smoke Pot: the 40 Year Fight for Marijuana Smokers’ Rights.

Connect:

Keith Stroup on LinkedIn

Keith Stroup's NORML Bio

NORML:

NORML.org: Working to Restore Marijuana Laws Since 1970

NORML on Twitter

 

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

Phoenix Distributors Managing Partner, Chris Finelli

Phoenix Distributors Managing Partner, Chris Finelli

August 16, 2021

Chris has held both sales and leadership positions in the investment management as well as executive leadership positions in the cannabis industry. In his current role, Chris is the Managing Partner of Phoenix Distributors, a sales and marketing as a service company for the cannabis industry. Phoenix Distributors focuses on helping Cannabis and CBD operators build efficient revenue streams by providing third party sales and marketing services for their products.  

Previously, Chris was the Chief Operating Officer at Genius Fund, a $160 million cannabis focused private equity fund. In his role as Chief Operating Officer Chris was tasked with spearheading a ground up restructure of all Genius Fund portfolio companies to sustain operations with no additional investor capital. Prior to taking over the role of COO, Chris was the Chief Revenue Officer at Genius where he scaled and built a channelized salesforce across THC CPG products, CBD CPG products, wholesale CBD and THC commodities, and investor relations. Prior to entering the cannabis space Chris was in charge of investment sales for the New England region of the United States at Voya Investment Management.

 

Connect:

Chris Finelli on LinkedIn

Phoenix Distribution:

Visit Phoenix Distro on the Web

 

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

Evo Hemp Co-Founder, Jourdan Samel & Ari Sherman

Evo Hemp Co-Founder, Jourdan Samel & Ari Sherman

August 1, 2021

Ari Sherman and Jourdan Samel are Sales & Marketing executives in the natural products industry. Ari and Jourdan Co-Founded Hemp Health and natural foods brand Evo Hemp in 2012 to facilitate the evolution of the United States family farm. By establishing a supply chain of U.S. grown hemp, they’re working to revive the country’s agricultural system. The Evo Hemp brand was created to bring innovative hemp based consumer products to the U.S. market. Evo’s product line consists of both hemp food products and CBD infused products; and can now be found in over 3,000 retail stores nationwide including HEB, Whole Foods Market Globally, Publix, Fresh Market, Kroger, Safeway & Costco.

In 2017, Ari and Jourdan were recognized by Forbes magazine as a 30 under 30 member in the Food and Drink category. In 2018 They were recognized by Marijuana Venture in their 40 under 40 category as well.

Their mission is focused on reviving rural communities out of poverty through industrial farming. Recently, they announced their partnership with Native American Tribes across the country. These partnerships will highlight how hemp can be used as a tool for economic growth and prosperity in rural areas.

Connect:

Ari Sherman LinkedIn
Jourdan Samel LinkedIn

Evo Hemp Spotlights:

Evo Hemp Expands Retail Footprint in Whole Foods and H-E-B Supermarkets
Evo Hemp Partners With Pine Ridge Indian Reservation to Grow Organic Hemp
American Hemp Documentary, Staring Jourdan Samel and Ari Sherman

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

Flourish Software CEO, Colton Griffin

Flourish Software CEO, Colton Griffin

July 18, 2021

Colton is CEO of Flourish Software, a leading supply chain management and seed to sale tracking software solution for the cannabis, CBD, and hemp verticals. Colton’s career and expertise are at the intersection of supply chain operations, enterprise software, and analytics. He graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with a BS in Industrial Engineering.

Resource Links:

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

RYTE Brands CEO Eric White

RYTE Brands CEO Eric White

June 13, 2021

Eric is CEO at RYTE™ Brands, a portfolio company whose holdings include RYTE CBD, Moksha Chocolate, and LYTE (CBD Pre-Rolls). He launched RYTE online and in-stores in August of 2020, building out and executing RYTE's branding and product portfolio, DTC and Retail sales channels, and national marketing campaigns. Eric also works closely with RYTE’s portfolio partners to amplify their growth – providing retail trade guidance, strategic direction, and market insight.

In the industry since 2014, Eric has a wide-ranging background in CPG sales, manufacturing/processing, brand & product development, compliance, education, and testing. He regularly participates on industry panels speaking on a wide range of topics and has launched multiple brands and dozens of product SKUs into the market.

Before joining RYTE™ Brands, Eric led Wholesale/Retail (B2B) Sales at Balanced Health Botanicals, one of the fastest-growing brands in the CPG industry and parent company to both CBDistillery and BOTA. Under his leadership, monthly sales of branded products increased by 750% and overall corporate revenue increased from $10MM to $68MM. Fueling that growth was an increase in store count from several hundred outlets to over 5000+, with monthly sales in the Independent Channel growing from $125k to $1.2MM. Under his direction, national placement included products in Albertsons, ULTA, TJ Max, and Sierra Trading Post.™

Prior to joining Balanced Health, Eric was principal and founder at Full Spectrum Advisors, a boutique sales, marketing, and product development consultancy focused on the cannabis industry. Before founding FSA, Eric served as VP of Revenue for Sansal Enterprises in Pueblo, CO where he gained firsthand, “on farm” experience in cultivation and processing (not to mention cloning, harvesting, drying, and greenhouse operations).

Eric spent his early career on Wall Street, working for 14 years on the Chicago Stock Exchange at a sell side Broker /Dealer (Cheevers and Company) specializing in equity derivatives. 

He carried his series 7 and 24 licenses while serving as desk principal. He attended Miami University in Oxford, OH, where he earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Marketing with Minors in German and Political Science.

Originally from Chicago, Eric is an avid Cubs and Bears fan. These days he can be found hiking around Boulder with his four kids, trail running, camping ,  or skiing the trees.

Helpful Links:

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

Copperstate Farms Managaging Director, J. Fife Symington IV

Copperstate Farms Managaging Director, J. Fife Symington IV

May 17, 2021

J. Fife Symington IV is an entrepreneur and Arizona native with more than three decades of experience in greenhouse agriculture. He serves as Managing Director of Copperstate Farms, a vertically integrated cannabis company he co-founded in 2016. 

Symington’s agricultural pursuits began in the early 90’s. After graduating with honors from Harvard University, Symington spent time travelling in Mexico where he was inspired to take vegetable production to the next level. He co-founded and developed several commercial scale greenhouse operations, including International Greenhouse Produce in Culiacan, Sinaloa, Nueva Agronomia de Nayarit in Jala, Nayarit, and Apache Produce in Nogales, Arizona. Collectively, these agricultural facilities encompassed 850 acres of covered greenhouses and shipped more than 175 million pounds of vegetables to the U.S. each year. 

With an affinity for project development and innovation, Symington decided to explore large-scale cannabis cultivation in the early stages of the industry. In 2016, he transitioned his grow expertise from tomatoes to medical cannabis with the purchase of a 40-acre glass greenhouse in Snowflake, Arizona. 

With a strong vision centered on economic growth and community welfare, Symington refurbished and outfitted the failing facility with the latest greenhouse technology and established Copperstate Farms. Now one of the largest cannabis greenhouse operations in North America and the largest employer in Snowflake with over 800 team members, Copperstate Farms continues to advance the industry on a positive level.  The company owns and operates four medical/recreational dispensaries, and is the largest wholesaler in the state of Arizona.

Resource Links:

Upper Hand Founder & CEO, Kevin MacCauley

Upper Hand Founder & CEO, Kevin MacCauley

April 23, 2021

Kevin is an active businessman and entrepreneur in the startup tech community. While attending Indiana University, he founded the nation’s first collegiate hosted mini marathon. He went on to serve as Sr. VP of Sales for venture-backed ClassWatch until it’s $15M acquisition in 2011. Kevin founded Upper Hand in 2012 after seeing an opportunity as a Little League coach to revolutionize the sports and fitness industry. Kevin actively supports the startup and sports community as a TechStar Sports Accelerator mentor and overseeing a predictive analytics program with Butler University.

Resource Links:

NUG Inc. CEO & Founder, John Oram

NUG Inc. CEO & Founder, John Oram

March 18, 2021

Dr. Oram holds Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in environmental chemistry and engineering from the University of California Los Angeles and bachelor’s degrees in analytical chemistry and biochemistry from the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Dr. Oram spent his research years studying the complex physical and chemical processes governing the fate of contaminants in the coastal environment.  He has authored numerous peer-reviewed publications and technical reports, has given presentations before local and international audiences, and is an invited member of several technical review and scientific steering committees.  Dr. Oram’s research was instrumental in forming government regulations regarding water quality and assessing human health impacts of agricultural pesticides. 

In 2009, Dr. Oram co-founded CW Analytical Laboratories to establish standardized testing and certification protocols to ensure the safety and quality of medical cannabis.   CW Analytical Laboratories is now recognized as the most trusted analytical laboratory in California.

Dr. Oram and his lab were instrumental in developing cannabis regulations in California, Washington, and New Jersey.  Specifically, Dr. Oram was an invited member of the scientific advisory panel for Washington’s Initiative 502 regulations.

Dr. Oram founded and operates multiple successful businesses in the cannabis vertical that currently employ over one hundred thirty full-time employees combined. Dr. Oram is also a significant contributor to Oakland’s Cannabis Equity Program where he incubates six equity-qualified applicants with infrastructure, financing, and business training.

Resource Links:

Flowr Corporation CEO, Vinay Tolia

Flowr Corporation CEO, Vinay Tolia

March 18, 2021

Born and raised in Michigan, Mr. Tolia attended the University of Michigan where he earned a BA in economics and BSE in Industrial and Operations Engineering,  He previously held roles with investment banking firms Peter J. Solomon Company and hedge fund Midtown Capital before co-founding Bengal Capital Trading LLC, a Chicago based hedge fund.

While at Bengal Capital, Vinay was an early investor in various US multistate operators (MSOs) as well as other ancillary cannabis companies.

In 2018 he left Bengal to become the CEO of the Flowr Corporation.  Mr. Tolia led the company’s go-public fundraise as well as subsequent financings as well as the acquisition of Holigen Holdings which gave Flowr a global footprint.

Vinay served as a member of the board of directors of Imerman Angels, a cancer support organization and his keenly interested in education reform and social justice.

In this episode, Vinay answers questions like:

  • How do you manage life on the road as a husband and father while managing your day-to-day tasks in business? 
  • What about business management are you most passionate about?
  • Who or what do you attribute your success to?
  • What has your biggest success this year been?
  • What was your biggest failure and why? How did you get through it?

Resource Links:

In this episode, John answers questions like:

  • How do you manage life on the road as a husband and father while managing your day-to-day tasks in business? 
  • What about business management are you most passionate about?
  • Who or what do you attribute your success to?
  • What has your biggest success this year been?
  • What was your biggest failure and why? How did you get through it?

Resource Links:

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