Speakers at MJ Unpacked Vegas #mju21
Writing college course papers on outlaw motorcycle gangs and Michigan Cosa Nostra families he held a summer position as a Clerk 5 with the Canadian Penitentiary Service in the Solicitor-General's office. There he composed a standard manual for the deployment of correctional personnel in emergency situations.
He worked for the Canadian Federal Department of Transport as an airport runway load-tester and at the Department of Public Works as a highway surveyor and flex-track/ATV assistant mechanic in the sub-Arctic. Dan also was employed by the Royal Mail Service as a contract driver of trucked bulk mail.
Dan moved full time to Toronto in 1972 to work for Ivan Reitman (Ghostbusters Director) at City-TV where he was employed as a game show and advertisement announcer.
In 1969 he had first performed on CBC network television as a writer/actor for producer Lorne Michaels in the Great Canadian Humour Test TV Summer Special.
Dan’s performing career began at the Toronto branch of Chicago’s Improv Theatre – The Second City. This was followed by his hiring by Lorne Michaels as a writer/performer for Saturday Night Live 1975-1979.
After SNL he performed in numerous feature films, over 150 roles.
Dan was awarded a Doctorate in Literature (Honoris Causa) from Carleton University in 1997 for recognition of his Saturday Night Live writing and for the nine produced screenplays on which he shares co-writing credits - LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT, THE BLUES BROTHERS, SPIES LIKE US, DRAGNET, GHOSTBUSTERS, GHOSTBUSTERS II, CONEHEADS, NOTHING BUT TROUBLE (VALKENVANIA), BLUES BROTHERS II.
Dan Aykroyd is a Grammy and an Oscar nominee. The Grammy nomination was for Best New Artist 1979 for the triple platinum selling BRIEFCASE FULL OF BLUES record album which he recorded with his then partner John Belushi. The Oscar nomination was for his performance as Best Supporting Actor in the Best Picture of 1989 - Driving Miss Daisy. The films with which Mr. Aykroyd has had principal associations have grossed close to one billion dollars worldwide. He was awarded an Emmy for his writing on the Saturday Night Live show starring Sissy Spacek.
In 2000, Dan was invested with the Order of Canada, a Vice-Regal decoration which is given to prominent citizens who "desire to make a better country."
Union affiliations since 1968 include the pioneering Letter Carriers Union of Canada and its successor the Canadian Union of Postal Workers; Association of Canadian Television and Radio Artists; Screen Actors Guild/American Federation of Television and Radio Artists; and the Writers Guild of America.
Dan is a subscribing benefactor to the American Society for Psychical Research and the Mutual U.F.O. Network.
He has also served as a sworn officer in the reserve unit in the City of Harahan, Louisiana Police Department (1997-2011) and as a sworn reserve deputy sheriff in Hinds Country MS serving under Sheriff Tyrone Lewis, the first African American to hold the office in that County.
Dan has trained at the United States Secret Service facility at Rowley, Maryland in multiple firearms handling and also has taken instruction at Bill Scott Racing in West Virginia. He has completed the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Regina Depot pursuit driving course in four minutes. [To qualify for certification a time of three and a half minutes is required so Dan says ‘he has more practice to do.’]
In 2007 Dan co-founded the Blue Line Foundation with former New Orleans Police veteran officer and twice elected Chief of Harahan City Police, Peter Dale, to assist rural, resource challenged, police departments in the Southern U.S. with training, equipment and programs promoting a more humane and tolerant approach to policing.
Dan has also served as a federally designated presiding Judge for the Canadian Immigration and Citizenship Committee administering the oath of citizenship to new citizens in 2002.
In 1983 he co-ventured as an investor with the co-founder of Hard Rock Cafe International, Mr. Isaac Tigrett to open U.S. outlets of this famous hospitality institution.
House of Blues Entertainment Inc. was subsequently founded in 1993 by Mr. Isaac Tigrett, Mr. Aykroyd and Mr. Laurence Bilzerian.
As Elwood Blues, Dan hosted the 25 year running House of Blues Radio Hour which was syndicated on 180 radio stations worldwide. House of Blues Entertainment was sold to Live Nation Inc. in 2006. Dan remains an active Founding Consultant to the enterprise.
House of Blues operates bars, restaurants and concert venues in Boston, Cleveland, Chicago, Las Vegas, Anaheim, San Diego, Houston, Dallas, New Orleans and Myrtle Beach.
He has an active concert schedule throughout North America performing with ™The Blues Brothers Formal Classic – No Imitation – All-Star Show Band and Revue – Starring The Legacy Multi-Platinum Selling Atlantic Recording Artist Brother Elwood Blues and The True Blood Brother Zurashaida Blues, Descendant of The Khans of Baluchistan and The Royal Kings Of Albania – Featuring Joe Sublett and Darryl Leonard – The Texacali Horns.™
From 2007 to 2018 Dan was the importing agent to Canada for Patron Tequila. He and his team developed it into the #1 luxury brand in its category across the country. Patron Spirits Inc. was recently sold to Bacardi Inc.
In December 2008, Dan entered the wine business in Canada through his investing and partnering with Toronto-based Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Ltd. launching several wines bearing his name including the Dan Aykroyd Discovery Series and the Dan Aykroyd Signature Reserve VQA Vidal Icewine. The former was named Canadian Wine of the Year by the Wine Council of Canada.
The success of his spirit business in Canada prompted Dan to enter the U.S. marketplace in December 2008 with his Crystal Head Vodka which is produced in Newfoundland, Canada. CHV won the Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco World Spirit Competition. The multiple award winning vodka is renowned for being filtered through Herkimer Diamonds and contains no additives. Its distinctive skull-shaped glass bottle was designed by famed artist John Alexander and is made by the renowned Bruni Glass Company.
Other credits include “The Candidate,” “Tammy, “Get on Up” as well as the HBO film “Behind the Candelabra.” Aykroyd is also one of the Executive Producers of the 2016 Ghostbusters film produced by Ivan Reitman for Sony Pictures and Dan is a principal in ‘Ghostco’ with Ivan Reitman which is a contracting entity working to develop numerous properties under the Ghostbusters mark.
In 1983 Dan married Alexandria, Virginia-born actress and explorer Donna Lynn Dixon (Member Explorers Club/Fellow, Royal Canadian Geographic Society). Together they have three adult female children.
A seasoned Second City and Saturday Night Live alumni, Jim’s starred in a selection of critically acclaimed movies ranging from Trading Places to Wonder Wheel, working with famed directors like Oliver Stone, Roman Polanski, David Lynch and Michael Mann. He’s also served as an executive producer, music composer, director, book author, and Broadway star. His own television show, According to Jim, aired for 182 episodes during eight seasons with the family favorite launching into off-net syndication. Along with Larry Joe Campbell and other talented Second City alum, Jim Belushi and the Board of Comedy perform improv sketch comedy at colleges, clubs, performing arts centers and venues nationwide. And, together with Dan Aykroyd, Jim tours the globe as Brother Zee of the iconic Blues Brothers. Additionally, Jim headlines his own music group The Sacred Hearts, which is the official house band for the House of Blues brand of venues.
With 42 years in the public eye and Jim’s professional career further inspired by the beauty and healing power of cannabis, Jim’s actively engaged in several projects benefiting the region around Belushi’s Farm and beyond. In Medford, Jim is helping reconstruct the historic Holly Theater to bring the 1930s Spanish Colonial movie palace back to life as Southern Oregon's largest indoor concert venue. In Eagle Point, Jim is assisting with the reconstruction of The Butte Creek Mill, destroyed in a 2016 electrical fire, to preserve its heritage, build community, and improve the environment. And where Jim looks to have the most profound impact, he’s working vigorously with scientists and the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission and Portland City Council to create an opioid trade program where Veterans, the infirmed, downtrodden and addicted can have a place for healing for low to no cost. Additionally, Jim’s on the board of the Last Prisoner Project, a coalition of cannabis industry leaders, executives and artists dedicated to bringing restorative justice to the cannabis industry.
In the words of Dan Aykroyd, “If John had been a pothead, he’d still be alive today.”
She went on to work with Canyon Ranch, developing and heading up a new entity to leverage their brand and content. And she now works with a number of companies, as either a director or strategic advisor, helping them drive growth and differentiate themselves. These include Belushi’s Farm, which cultivates high quality cannabis crops and products and Fyllo, a leading innovator in data, media and compliance solutions for highly regulated industries.
She is also Chairman of the Hugh M. Hefner Foundation which presents the HMH First Amendment Awards and partners with organizations to protect civil rights and civil liberties, including ending the war on drugs.
She has been featured on “60 Minutes,” appeared a number of times on “Squawk Box” and “Morning Joe,” and received numerous awards.
Raised in Golden, CO, Ryan graduated from the University of Denver with an MBA and a degree in Philosophy and Digital Media. During his time as a graduate student he also started and ran his own web design firm. He has both his Project Management Professional (PMP) and Six Sigma certifications.
Prior to Cann, Jake was an associate at Bain Capital’s North American Private Equity fund evaluating potential investment opportunities across a variety of industries with a specific focus in the consumer space. Prior to joining Bain Capital, Jake worked at Bain & Company in the San Francisco office on strategy and due diligence projects across industries, including technology, healthcare, private equity, and hedge funds. Prior to that, he worked as an investment banking analyst at Allen & Company in New York providing M&A advisory services to companies in a variety of industries.
Jake graduated sum cum laude from Duke University with a B.S. in Economics and Political Science and received his M.B.A. from Stanford University.
Jake is passionate about the potential for cannabis products to replace abuse of alcohol and Rx drugs and has made a number of cannabis venture investments.
Javan sees tremendous synergies between traditional consumer products brands and the cannabis industry. The learnings from brand management, supply chain, product lifecycle, consumer behavior and financial engineering correlate directly between the two industries, especially as the cannabis industry grows and becomes more mainstream.
He is keenly focused on consumer behavior across the product and brand lifecycle and how behavioral analysis can guide product strategy. Understanding product/brand positioning and consumer connection to the business are critical to financial and strategic success.
Javan is currently an operating partner at Overton Capital and an Advisor in the consulting firm Skip Intro Advisors. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Business School.
Prior to joining Flow Cannabis Co, Annie served as VP Marketing & Sales for Care By Design (a CannaCraft brand), a pioneer in cannabinoid wellness. Through her strategy consultancy, Growing Impact, she has helped numerous California cannabis brands across marketing, business development, and sales strategy.
Annie honed her marketing expertise managing CPG brands at the Clorox Company, later leading trade marketing for Solyndra, a manufacturer of solar panels. She built and led the first marketing teams at Amyris - a biotechnology innovator, Couchsurfing.com - the world’s largest online travel community, and World Centric - a manufacturer of sustainable food packaging.
Annie holds at BA in Political Science from Yale University and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where she co-founded the HBS Green Business Alumni Association. A Massachusetts native, she moved to California in 2007 and now lives in Sonoma County, CA with her husband Scott and two children, Jackson and Miley.
legal industry” by former Speaker of the California Assembly Willie Brown. As a lifelong activist,
author, educator, investor, and entrepreneur, he has spent more than four decades on the front
lines of the cannabis reform movement. His most notable business achievements include
co-founding Harborside-one of the first six dispensaries licensed In the United States-now a
publicly-traded company on the Canadian Securities Exchange, with five dispensary locations in
California including one of the first to feature a drive-thru; Steep Hill Laboratory, the first
cannabis analytics company; and Arcview Group, the first dedicated cannabis investment
Steve is the author of The Cannabis Manifesto and an originator of the wellness approach to
understanding cannabis. He played a key role in the passage of Initiative 59, Washington DC’s
medical cannabis law; the passage of Prop 64, California’s adult-use law; and successfully
defended multiple legal attempts by US federal authorities to shutter the doors of Harborside.
His media projects include the starring role in Weed Wars, the first cannabis-oriented reality TV
show, produced by the Discovery Channel in 2011; a new online TV show, Ask Steve DeAngelo,
available on Green-Flower.com; and extensive appearances on most major media outlets
including CNN, FOX, MSNBC, CNBC, and The New York Times.
Steve is the recipient of the 2015 High Times Lester Grinspoon High Times Lifetime
Achievement Award and was named one of the most influential people and "gatekeeper of the
industry" in 2015 by the International Business Times. In 2016 he was named one of the seven
“Most Powerful People” in America’s cannabis industry by Fortune. Most recently, he was
honored with the Peter Tosh Equal Rights Award and inducted into the Marijuana Business Daily
Hall of Fame.
Steve believes that an ethical and politically engaged industry will be the most powerful force in
spreading cannabis reform to every corner of the planet. As Founder of the Last Prisoner
Project (2019), he will not stop until the last cannabis prisoner is free. As host of the Radio Free
Cannabis podcast-launched in 2020, his role as an activist seeking global unity for equal justice,
advocating for human rights around the world, for cannabis legalization across planet earth, and
the end of criminalizing medicinal plants worldwide, continues.
Jennifer Drake is one of the highest ranking women executives in the cannabis space. As someone who has consistently stood out in traditionally male-dominated fields, Jen has taken it upon herself to provide mentorship, networking and opportunity for other women in the cannabis space. She goes above and beyond in creating an inclusive workspace where anyone can feel comfortable.
Founded in 2015, LEVEL is the coalescence of Chris’ passion for small molecule chemistry, pharmacology, and plant medicine. As a cannabinoid company, LEVEL focuses on creating targeted effects for consumers using established and emergent cannabinoids through consistent, standardized formulations and delivery methods.
LEVEL is the culmination of years of training, testing, failing (including two previous attempts at launching different cannabis ventures), dogged persistence, and relentless pursuit of a vision that was 20 years in the making.
Chris is a veteran of the US armed forces, having proudly served in the US Navy as a Chinese Interpreter.
Previously, Mr. Enyia served as the Executive Director of the Illinois Liquor Control Commission ("ILCC"). In this role, he created and drove the organizational vision, strategy and policy for all ILCC operations, such as licensing, legal, enforcement, industry education and legislative affairs. In addition, he partnered with the ILCC's board of directors to champion diversity, equity and inclusion efforts.
Mr. Enyia graduated from Lewis University with bachelor's degrees in Philosophy and Political Science. He received a Senior Executives in State and Local Government certificate from Harvard Kennedy School.
Since the launch of ZolTrain two years ago, Danny has worked with over 20 cannabis brands to develop product education in an engaging platform for dispensaries and consumers alike.
Hennesy’s two primary passions as an outdoor enthusiast and believer in cannabis brought him to Colorado in 2013, when he proceeded to enter the fast-paced and quickly growing marijuana industry as an independent contractor. He was the Vice President of the ENST society and an active member of the Washington DC chapters of NORML and Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP). Hennesy brings a diverse background to the industry as a certified Rescue Diver, Eagle Scout, and outdoorsman. When not working he still finds time for camping, hiking, and snowboarding in the mountains around Boulder, Colorado.
He has been actively involved in developing rules, laws, and regulations in Oregon for over a decade - both in cannabis, and other arenas of public policy. He led the statewide field campaign for Measure 91 with New Approach Oregon in 2014, and helped to qualify the measure for the ballot earlier that same year. He has worked as a labor organizer, a legislative assistant in the Oregon Legislature, Deputy Communications Director for two Eugene-area state representatives, a business development professional for a leading cannabis industry market research and data analytics firm, served on the Advance Team of the Bernie Sanders for President campaign in 2016 and 2020, and has worked on political campaigns of all shapes and sizes in all corners of the map.
A native of the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago, Douglas has acquired vast knowledge and experience in his 34 years of work in the Chicagoland area. He excelled for 20 years in the manufacturing industry with Vulcanium Corp, starting as a temporary worker and advancing all the way to Plant Manager over his 20 years of service. Douglas worked as a Real Estate agent at Coldwell Banker for five years, where he was honored as the ‘Rookie Of The Year’ for having achieved the highest in sales and transactions in his first year. Douglas has vast management experience, working for 10 years at the Target Corporation as a Senior Team Leader. In this role, Douglas was responsible for the operations of the store, implementing effective logistics processes, training new members leadership as they came on board, and more.
As the Executive Director of the Cannabis Equity IL Coalition, he works with Coalition members and community partners to advance equity and justice throughout the implementation of legalization. Douglas connects with community leaders and elected officials in sharing effective solutions to meet the Coalition’s goals, including expanding Black and Brown business ownership in cannabis, reinvesting in the most impacted communities, expanding opportunities for people who are formerly incarcerated, and much more. Douglas was instrumental in developing and negotiating the nation’s first ever Community Benefits Agreement in the cannabis industry. Contact me at [email protected]
Throughout Gary’s career, he has launched key business ventures and built specialized servicing practices from the ground up, locally and globally. He has delivered operational efficiencies in organizations saving millions of dollars in operational expense.
Gary’s prior occupation involved managing a division of a 4B publicly traded real state company with responsibilities that included $22M P&L and a team of 310 supporting 764 U.S. field locations and 51,000 sales associates. His business-critical initiatives covered providing process expertise and vision, driving process optimization, identifying and implementing business tools and technologies, overseeing workforce planning, and managing facilities, vendors, and contracts.
As the founder and CEO of ColaGroup LLC, Gary makes use of his business, financial, technical and marketing experience to help socially and economically impacted black and brown individuals, and community members improve their financial acumen, business knowledge and access to wealth. In addition to this, his responsibilities include community outreach, cannabis education and job access and advancement to individuals affected by the criminalization of cannabis. ColaGroup was instrumental in getting the first of its kind, locally and nationally, Community Benefits Agreement, signed with CEIC (Cannabis Equity Illinois Coalition) and Nature’s Care Dispensary, where he manages. Within this agreement and through his operational duties there, Gary focuses on creating a socially inclusive work environment and has hired a workforce BIPOC (Black and Indigenous People of Color) that is greater than 75%. His goals include creating access to wealth and education through cannabis knowledge, implementing a living wage, and creating additional opportunities for growth within dispensary/cultivation operations as well as ancillary businesses.
Gary earned his undergraduate degree from DeVry University and obtained his EMBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern Northwestern University.
Love’s Oven was founded in 2009 and Peggy joined the team as an investor/advisor in 2011. In May of 2014 Peggy retired after 33 years from an illustrious career in the highly regulated health insurance industry with United Health Group where she held two primary positions - one as Director of Operations where she led post-merger/acquisition operational integration projects for the past 15 years and also managed claim and customer service operations for the first 17 years of her career.
One accomplishment in the cannabis industry that Peggy is most proud of is being one of the first manufacturers in the industry to build the Love’s Oven infused products manufacturing facility in Colorado to full FDA compliance ahead of Federal regulation.
Prior to joining BDSA, Kelly spent 13 years at The Nielsen Company within the BASES Innovation division. She brings with her experience partnering with alcohol beverage, consumer package goods, and cannabis manufacturers to improve innovation outcomes. At BASES, her most recent role was lead efforts to bring innovation insights specifically to the alcohol beverage and cannabis industries.
In her current role, Kelly prides herself in making data come to life with storytelling and actionable insights to help clients drive success in the cannabis market. Together with her team, she works with manufacturers, retailers, and investors to deliver unmatched insights and analytics to drive their businesses forward.
Vince, a 2021 Forbes 30 Under 30 executive, currently holds a position as a Board Director of the Cannabis Distribution Association (CDA) to help shape regulations for the betterment of the cannabis supply chain. He graduated from the University of Virginia with degrees in Computer Science, Economics and Statistics.
Before joining Merida, Mr. Rosenberg had 35 years of experience in the financial services industry and has held senior level positions in leveraged finance, investment banking, private equity, commercial banking and public securities asset management. Mr. Rosenberg worked previously as a Managing Director for Duff & Phelps, Wells Fargo Securities, Barrington Associates, and Salomon Brothers. Prior to his investment banking career, Mr. Rosenberg was a partner at BLUM Capital, a San Francisco based hedge fund, an Associate for Comman, Howard & Flamen and a commercial banking marketing and credit officer for Security Pacific Bank and Manufacturers Hanover Bank. Mr. Rosenberg graduated magna cum laude from the University of Colorado with a B.S. degree in Business and Administration. He holds active Series 7, 63 and 24 FINRA securities licenses. Mr. Rosenberg also served on the Board of Directors of GrowGeneration, a publicly traded specialty retail chain selling cannabis cultivation equipment and supplies to commercial cannabis growers.
Mr. Russ is a veteran sales executive with extensive experience in the cannabis and beverage space. He joins Curaleaf from Lowell Farms, a vertically integrated cannabis operator, where he served as Vice President of Sales.
Prior to entering the cannabis industry, Mr. Russ was the Vice President and General Sales Manager of the West Region at Constellation Brands and the Executive Vice President & General Manager for the West Business Unit at Red Bull North America.
Mr. Russ started his career in the wine and spirits industry, where he served as a
Region Director for Pernod Ricard and spent 12 years at Diageo, where his roles
included General Sales Manager for the Northeast region as well as National Director
of Strategic Accounts.
Mr. Russ is a life-long Californian and holds a BS in Business Administration from San
Francisco State University.
Michael is a corporate personality profiler, but his clients often call him a mind reader. For over 20 years he has helped organizations across the country, both large and small, predict the future success of job applicants to ensure they hire only “A” players. Throughout his career Michael has assessed over 50,000 candidates. It's safe to say that he knows how people think, relate, and behave. Spremulli is able to predict, with pin-point accuracy, the probability of an applicant being successful in the position they are being considered for. When clients ignore his advice (yes – this sometimes happens) they regret it, because a hiring disaster often occurs. Michael has helped hundreds of companies save tens-of-millions of dollars by avoiding costly hiring mistakes at all levels within an organization. He is excited to bring his experience and expertise to the cannabis space to help you take the headaches out of your hiring process.
Michael's no-nonsense, humorous, and occasionally irreverent approach to speaking and consulting consistently focuses on one goal – helping you take the guesswork out of hiring top performers.
Tucked in the hills of Sonoma County, Mercy Wellness opened its doors 11 years ago. Once Joe took the reins as Head Buyer in 2015, he focused on integrating the recreational farming community and expanding the genetic diversity of Mercy’s flower lineup, helping establish Mercy Wellness as a legacy operator in Northern California and keeping them at the forefront of the never ending pheno-hunt. With an early recognition for the importance of terpene analysis, he helped spotlight the significance of a strain’s full cannabinoid profile and curated Mercy’s 4,000+ offerings to encompass the full spectrum of cannabis’ healing powers.
In 2018, Joe Sullivan helped Mercy Wellness launch a cannabis radio talk show "Canna Help You", bringing together industry leaders to discuss the dynamics of the industry and the efficacy of cannabis products for the residents of Sonoma County. With a goal to always raise the awareness of those around him, Joe is an invaluable member of the local community and the cannabis industry as a whole.
In addition to his duties at Mercy Wellness, Joe is an esteemed judge with the Emerald Cup Flower division. In their words, “The Emerald Cup prides itself in bringing together experts and educators in the cannabis industry to our fellow farmers, patients, and patrons each year." To see the most esteemed cannabis judging event shift to the importance of terpene profiles as its primary category definer brings the biggest smile to Joe’s face - a smile that anybody who knows him looks forward to.
With a demonstrated track record of building brands, crafting strategic initiatives, and leading new business launches to fruition, Ms. Taylor utilizes a comprehensive 360-degree analytical approach to business development. She leverages her corporate and entrepreneurial experiences along with partnership development skills to grow revenue/ market share for client opportunities.
Philanthropic in nature, Pamela has lent her assistance to several not-for-profit organizations to champion their annual fund-raising campaigns. Leading the charge, Pamela has conceptualized and executed many citywide funding initiates, raising thousands of dollars for disadvantaged groups. Ms. Taylor has over three decades of commitment and experience with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Chicago Urban League, Bethel New Life Entrepreneur Coaching program, Cannabis Equity Illinois Coalition, and Chicago Norml.
Upon returning from an extended stay living in Amsterdam in 2016, Jenn T. joined the team at national cannabis media powerhouse, DOPE Magazine, to launch their footprint in the Nevada Market.
With the passing of legalized adult-use cannabis in 2017, Jenn T. realized there was a need for a bridge between cannabis retail and guest hospitality. This creative spark culminated in the 2018 launch of Cannect Hospitality, a cannabis focused, hospitality development and events company. Guest, staff, and vendor safety is the focus as Cannect Hospitality works to introduce sensible regulations, compliant SOPs and responsible safe practices for the industry.
Cannect Hospitality has curated cannabis projects for and with: High Times, DOPE Magazine, Farechild, Women Grow, NORML, NCIA, Cannabition Cannabis Museum, Culture & Cannabis, The Chamber of Cannabis, CBDio, The Cannabis Business Den, The Apothecarium, State Flower, Valhalla, Curaleaf, Select and more.
In 2021 the Chamber led the campaign in Nevada for AB 341, Consumption Lounges Legalization. This bill will also be the first bill to establish what constitutes a social equity applicant and award licenses to those not represented in the first round of licensing for Nevada.
Tina's passion and drive to build a better cannabis space is fueled by her family members' combined incarcerations of over 30 years because of failed drug policy and the desire to revolutionize our society with plant based medicine. In 2020 & 2021 Tina was voted Cannabis Activist of the Year for Las Vegas and recognized as one of the most influential women in cannabis by Vegas Cannabis Magazine.
Cited in 2016, 2017, and 2018 by Cannabis Business Executive Magazine as one of the most important woman in marijuana, Sally is active in shaping cannabis policy at both the local and national level. Passionate about science, data, and changing the perceptions regarding the power and safety of cannabis as a medicine, she believes that educating the public is key to achieving Federal legalization and legitimacy.
Karli began her career in communication and marketing in the wine industry at a boutique PR agency in Napa, where she learned the ropes of pitching and building media relationships. While also expanding her wine education and knowledge, her interest in the wine business quickly deepened and lead her to explore other aspects of brand and event marketing. As her career progressed, she moved to Constellation Brands, the world’s leading wine company. There she emerged as a top-tier marketer, learning firsthand the importance of partnerships and cross-brand collaborations. Through thoughtful storytelling, pitching, and partnerships, Karli landed media coverage for brands in national media outlets including Today Show, Wall Street Journal, Wine Spectator and Food & Wine magazine.
While at Constellation, Karli helped launch a wine brand that, at the time, she didn’t know would eventually shift her career from wine to cannabis – this is when her Garden Society story began. In 2016, Karli reconnected with her former wine industry peer, Erin Gore, who had recently launched Garden Society, a cannabis company focused on women’s wellness. Shortly thereafter Erin asked Karli to join the Garden Society team to lead marketing and communication efforts. Together, Erin and Karli have quickly built a well-recognized luxury cannabis brand that has garnered the interest of Today Show, CNBC, Marie Claire, Los Angeles Times, Forbes and many more.
As she loved telling the story of wine—from vine-to-glass—Karli is even more passionate and personally touched in telling the Garden Society story, from seed-to-delectable confection.
Andy is co-founder and President of celebrated retail cannabis chain Medicine Man, he is co-founder of one of the fastest growing companies in the industry, Medicine Man Technologies (SHWZ), and now as a founding partner and President of the phytopharmaceutical company MedPharm, Williams is investing heavily into the future of pharmaceutical-grade cannabis research.
Williams earned his degree in industrial engineering from the University of Southern Colorado after serving in the United States Army’s 3rd Infantry Division. That experience prepared him for a wide-ranging career in manufacturing industries, where he quickly found himself in leadership positions and his own entrepreneurial opportunities.
In 2009, Williams was already a seasoned entrepreneur when he came upon the opportunity of a lifetime: A brand-new, state-regulated medical marijuana environment. He and his family opened their first Medicine Man cannabis dispensary later that year, and Medicine Man Technologies followed a few years later as North America first entered the recreational cannabis era—with Colorado (and Williams’ Medicine Man) leading the charge.
With years of experience in the world’s first regulated market, Williams is a leading expert on the cannabis industry featured in The New York Times, Rolling Stone, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, BBC and the MSNBC docu-series “Pot Barons,” which focused on Williams as one of the show’s central characters.
He's led a range of national brand launches, executed several national multi-channel consumer campaigns, and helped companies meet an array of business objectives. He enjoys solving complex business problems by combining data-driven research and analytics with award-winning creativity. His passion for growth has led him to work across a diverse portfolio of industries from pharmaceuticals (Abbvie, Pfizer) to consumer package goods (Tampax), apparel (Under Armour), and spirits (Rémy Martin Cointreau and Sam Adams).
At Theory, Thomas oversees all marketing and branding, including digital, social, packaging design, public relations, media buying, and customer service. Today, they are an industry leader in the cannabis space for their start-up mentality and for helping bring cannabis into the social fabric in emerging markets.
Outside of Theory Wellness, Thomas spends his time playing tennis and nordic skiing, listening to vinyl records, and enjoying a home-cooked meal with his wife Liz, their son River, and their dog Bird.