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Tag Archives | regulations

Lewis Koski, Chief Operating Officer of Metrc

Lewis Koski, the Chief Operating Officer of Metrc, America’s leading solution for cannabis and hemp governance, is this week’s guest on The Green Rush! Metrc’s software, RFID technology and support teams track cannabis products from seed to sale, ensuring a closed, legal ecosystem. Metrc’s solution ensures a secure supply chain, transparency, and public health, providing a safe marketplace for everyone.

In today’s oddly regulated cannabis world, regulations on the industry are created at the state level.  Our hosts sat down with Lewis to discuss how the differing rules and regulations across each state make working in the legal, taxed portion of the cannabis industry a challenge and how his platform is working to make compliance easier and easier.

With an interesting background, coming from Colorado, where he was Director of Marijuana enforcement, we wanted to chat with Lewis about why rollout of cannabis programs in different states are so different, his thoughts on how the cannabis industry has handled the vaping crisis, and what he thinks are the dumbest and silliest regulations facing the industry.

So don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy! 

Lewis Koski, Chief Operating Officer of Metrc

Lewis Koski is the Chief Operating Officer of Metrc – the nation’s leading solution for cannabis and hemp governance. Koski was director of the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division, where he helped build the first state agency to develop and implement medical and adult-use cannabis policy. He most recently co-founded Freedman & Koski, where he partnered with government agencies to build cannabis policies. Koski is recognized internationally as an expert in formative cannabis policy, as he helped to develop regulations that balance cannabis industry growth and public safety. He holds a Master of Business Administration with an emphasis on International Business and is a Doctoral Candidate in Public Administration with a focus on policy analysis and public participation in rulemaking. 

Links and mentions in the show

Links to the guest’s company and social media accounts

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Anne Donohoe and Lewis Goldberg of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Executive Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther.

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush 

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Bill Thurman, CEO and Chairman of Redbird Bioscience

Bill Thurman, CEO and Chairman of Redbird Bioscience, a licensed Oklahoma medical marijuana operator with an emphasis on large-scale cultivation and processing.

Oklahoma is the nation’s fastest growing medical marijuana markets with regulators approving more than 7,300 business licenses in the first year of the state’s medical cannabis program, including nearly 4,300 grower permits. According to tax receipts released by the Oklahoma Tax Commission, sales of medical marijuana in the state stood at just over $258 million through the first 10 months of 2019 and are on pace to eclipse $350 million by the end of the year.

Lewis and Nick chat with Bill about all things Oklahoma including what the true potential of the market is and how Redbird is working to help grow the infrastructure and community acceptance of medical marijuana in the state. In addition, the Green Rush team chats with Bill about the untapped cannabis market that is the South, Redbird’s plans for 2020 as it tries to grow out its brand identity and why compassion needs to be a greater emphasis for companies operating in the medical cannabis space.

Don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy!

Bill Thurman, CEO and Chairman of Redbird Bioscience 

Bill is a manager of Redbird Management and a member of the Board of Directors of Redbird Partners. Bill has extensive experience in the Long-Term Care Industry, with over fifteen years in management operations and development. Prior to the new opportunity with Redbird, Bill served as President and Chief Operating Officer for Heart to Heart Hospice, which grew under his leadership and direction from an entity valued at approximately $13 million in 2009, to an organization now serving over twenty locations in three different states, with a value exceeding $250 million. His experience ranges from operations and management as Vice President of Provident LifeCare and LifeCare Management, operating two 120 bed skilled nursing facilities, to serving as Director of Development for Frisco Health Partners. He also served as a development consultant to Victoria Gardens. Since 1995 he has been directly involved in the ground up development of eight new Long-Term Care facilities in Texas and has won Medicaid contracts as a project consultant for numerous development ventures. Bill’s experience includes Medicare/Medicaid contract application, site selection, acquisition and construction. Bill graduated from the University of Arkansas with a Bachelor’s degree in 1986.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Nick Opich of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush 

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Michael Schwamm, Partner at Duane Morris

Michael Schwamm, Partner in the Cannabis Practice at Duane Morris, LLP, one of the nation’s leading law firms serving the cannabis industry. Duane Morris attorneys represent businesses and individuals at every level of the cannabis supply chain.

Duane Morris clients include state-licensed adult-use marijuana, medical marijuana and hemp cultivators, processors, distributors and dispensaries, whether vertically integrated or operating as standalone businesses, as well as investors in those businesses.

Michael knows the nitty gritty about the industry like where the deals are, where the money is coming from and for listeners of this show who are closely following the M&A space, we promise this is a fascinating individual and an episode you will not want to miss.

Don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy!

About Michael Schwamm, Partner at Duane Morris

Michael D. Schwamm represents public and private entities in all aspects of their business affairs. He practices in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, securities and technology law and provides general corporate counseling. Mr. Schwamm formerly was general counsel and chief operating officer of FiberCity Networks, Inc., a telecommunications service provider and uses his experience to provide his clients with proofed, business-centered advice.

Mr. Schwamm represents companies of all sizes, including startups and venture-backed companies, privately held family businesses and both large and small public companies in all aspects of their business affairs. He also provides services to venture capital and private equity funds, angel and other institutional investors. An increasing focus of his practice is assisting single family offices in structuring their direct business acquisitions; Mr. Schwamm co-leads the firm’s initiative in this area. 

Mr. Schwamm has worked on a wide variety of transactions, including mergers, acquisitions, public offerings, private placements, joint ventures and licensing arrangements involving a number of industries, such as big data, business services, consumer/retail, technology including FinTech, entertainment, healthcare services, manufacturing, sports and telecommunication. He calls upon his partners across the country and around the world in other practice areas to ensure his clients receive seamless, efficient and effective service for all their legal needs.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Anne Donohoe of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Executive Producer Nick Opich Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush 

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Dr. Rick Strassman, Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine

Dr. Rick Strassman, Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, is this week’s guest on The Green Rush!

After twenty years of intermission, Dr. Strassman was the first person in the United States to undertake human research with psychedelic, hallucinogenic, or entheogenic substances with his research in the 1990s. Thanks to the research by Dr. Strassman, organizations like the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) have moved the ball forward with the FDA to the point that MDMA – or ecstasy – has been granted Phase III breakthrough status for the treatment of PTSD and universities such as NYU, the Imperial College in London and Johns Hopkins are all conducting cutting edge research.

For this episode, Lewis dives deep with Dr. Strassman about the medical value of psychedelics, how he reflects on his research 20 years after the fact what he foresees as the future of psychedelic medicine. Anyone following the cannabis industry should be closely following the psychedelics space as the paths to legalization for both are nearly parallel. 

Don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy!

About Dr. Rick Strassman

Los Angeles native, Rick Strassman, holds degrees from Stanford University and Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. He took his internship and general psychiatry residency at the University of California, Davis, Medical Center in Sacramento and he spent ten years as a tenured professor at the University of Mexico. Dr. Strassman also began the first new U.S.-Government-approved-and funded clinical research with psychedelic drugs in over twenty years. In addition, he has been a consultant to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, National Institute on Drug Abuse, Veteran’s Administration Hospitals, Social Security Administration, and other state and local agencies. Dr. Strassman currently practices psychiatry in Taos, New Mexico and is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry in the UNM School of Medicine.While living in the Pacific Northwest of the United States for five years, Dr. Strassman worked in community mental health centers for Washington State’s Whatcom and Jefferson Counties. He currently lives and practices psychiatry in Taos, New Mexico, and is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Anne Donohoe of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Executive Producer Nick Opich Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush 

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Marion Mariathasan, CEO of Simplifya

Marion Mariathasan, CEO of Simplifya, a leading provider of regulatory compliance software for the cannabis industry is this week’s guest on The Green Rush.

Simplifya is every cannabis operator and compliance managers best friend due to its web-based, self-auditing system which distills complex state and local regulations into a series of simple yes-or-no questions to facilitate self-audits, identify areas of non-compliance, manage remediation efforts, and generate management and audit reports.

In addition to covering how Simplifya is able to decode complex regulations on a state-by-state basis, our hosts also cover the company’s recent hire of John Vardaman, the author of the Cole Memo as well as Marion’s incredibly unique entrepreneurial journey including his Sri Lankan royal background.

Don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy!

Marion Mariathasan, Co-Founder and CEO at Simplifya

Marion is a serial entrepreneur that has founded, invested in, or been an advisor to over a dozen start-ups. He is a regular guest speaker at events such as Denver Start-up Week, CU Denver’s program on social entrepreneurship, and the United Nations Global Accelerator Initiative. Marion studied Architecture and Computer Science at the University of Kansas and Computer Information Systems with a minor in Business Management at Emporia State University. He enjoys time with his family, cooking spicy Sri Lankan cuisine, traveling, and connecting with people.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Anne Donohoe of KCSA Strategic Communications. 

Special thanks to our Executive Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush 

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Congressional Cannabis Day Part 1 – Capital Markets and Banking Panel

This week and next on The Green Rush we have a special treat for our listeners! Back in May, the KCSA team held the inaugural “KCSA Congressional Cannabis Day Forum” at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to discuss the legal and regulatory headaches of operating in the cannabis space. As part of the event, KCSA gathered a host of some of the brightest minds in the industry for a series of panel discussions aimed at addressing critical issues relevant to the sector, including capital markets and banking, CBD/hemp, opioids, veterans’ issues and social justice.

In the first installment of this four part series, we hear from our Capital Markets and Banking Panel. We were privileged to have with us, Evan Eneman, co-founder and CEO of MGO | Ello Alliance, Codie Sanchez, Managing Director of Cresco Capital Partners, Edward Fields, Chair and CEO of Dionymed, Nick Kovacevich, CEO and Founder of KushCo, and Moderator Tim Seymour from CNBC. What ensues a tremendous discussion on the banking and regulatory hurdles that cannabis businesses must endure and how that affects investor activity in the space.

So don’t sit back, lean forward and enjoy!

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Gretchen Gailey of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Executive Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

An Unregulated Interview with Willie Wonka

This week on the Green Rush, we wanted to take a step back in our look at the cannabis industry. For nearly 80 episodes, we’ve talked with some of the most influential leaders shaping the future of legal cannabis. But for this week, we decided to further explore what many in the industry refer to as the “grey market” – or the business of the industry that operates outside of the legal regulations within their country or state.

According to most projections, marijuana is almost a 100 billion dollar industry annually, both legal and illicit. Yet despite the emergence of a strong international legal medical market and an ever-expanding adult use market, only about 15 billion dollars of that 100 billion comes from legal sales.

To help explore this side of the industry, we were able to secure an interview this week with a guest who is regarded as one of the best artisanal small-batch marijuana edibles bakers in the country. Because he lives and works in a state where adult use marijuana isn’t quite yet legal, we’ve taken the steps today to filter and anonymize his voice.

What follows is a conversation that looks at the challenges a small business owner faces when trying to become a regulated company, the lucrativity of operating outside of the legal cannabis space, the growing popularity of infused meals and dinner parties and how underground edibles dealers market and build customer loyalty.

This is truly a must listen to episode, so don’t sit back, lean forward. Now onto the chat with the chocolatier who we affectionately call Willie Wonka.

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Anne Donohoe and Lewis Goldberg of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Evan Eneman – Co-Founder and CEO of MGO-ELLO Alliance

Evan Eneman, CEO of MGO-ELLO Alliance, is this week’s guest on The Green Rush. In case this is the first time you’ve heard of MGO-ELLO Alliance, the company can be considered the “Deloitte of Cannabis”, a leader in the cannabis financial, tax and advisory services space. ELLO has worked with hundreds of businesses to help them solve complex problems in regulatory compliance, capital markets advisory, tax services, operational improvements as well as staffing needs. Evan previously worked at Casa Verde Capital, a venture capital firm focused exclusively on the cannabis industry, which counts Snoop Dogg among its partners.

With both Anne and Nick away for this week’s conversation, Lewis solicited the help of Aaron Smith, former CNN cannabis reporter and now a member of the KCSA team, to join him for this interview. Because cannabis finance is extremely complicated and challenging, Lewis and Aaron enlist Evan to help them navigate the banking, security and regulatory issues cannabusinesses face including a deep dive on 280E. Additionally, Evan touches on the growth of the East Coast market and which state he thinks will transition to adult use first – New York or New Jersey?

Enjoy!   

Evan Eneman – Co-Founder and CEO of MGO-ELLO Alliance

Evan Eneman, a serial entrepreneur, advisor, and investor, is the founder of several leading ventures steering the cannabis industry today. He is the co-founder and CEO of ELLO and National Cannabis Practice leader for MGO/ELLO, an alliance of professional services firms providing capital markets and M&A advisory, tax, assurance, consulting, staffing and outsourcing services to a few hundred clients in the cannabis industry.  He is also the founder and CEO of Fiorello, a cannabis branding and marketing agency. After co-founding and running Casa Verde Capital for several years, Eneman launched Sands Lane Capital, a purpose-driven venture capital firm focusing on opportunities in the cannabis and hemp industries.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Aaron Smith and Lewis Goldberg of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter: @The_GreenRush

Instagram: @thegreenrush_podcast

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/thegreenrushpodcast/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGreenRushPodcast/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

Doug Cortina and Jigar Patel of NorCal Cannabis

Doug Cortina, CEO, and Jigar Patel, President, of NorCal Cannabis, one of the largest vertically integrated cannabis operators in California, are our guest for this week’s episode of the Green Rush! Subbing in on hosting duties for Lewis this week is our old pal Nick Opich who joins Anne to chat with Doug and Jigar.

In case NorCal is a new name for our listeners, it’s one that you should get on your radar quick. Currently the company operates state-of-the-art production facilities, including more than 100,000 sq. feet of indoor flower canopy, manufacturing, processing, packaging and distribution assets. In addition, NorCal also operates the leading network of statewide delivery depots, and had a coming out party of sorts this past week when they announced the company raised $27M as part of its Series A round.

Anne and Nick chat with Doug and Jigar for a deep dive into the operations of NorCal and discuss what the company has planned for the new financing. In addition, our hosts touch on NorCal’s potential plans to go public, how Doug and Jigar found each other, and the evolving California cannabis delivery landscape. To top things off, Doug and Jigar let us in what they would tell California Governor Gavin Newsom if they get the chance to bend his ear about the California cannabis industry.    

Sit back and enjoy!

Doug Cortina, CEO, brings a strong background of hands on business and entrepreneurial experience to NorCal Cannabis. Doug has successfully led the planning, development and execution of three cannabis projects in the Bay Area. Douglas has been involved in the real estate development industry in the Bay Area for the past five years. During this time he has structured and administered numerous real estate partnerships and is directly responsible for the acquisition of over $50MM in Bay Area properties. Prior to moving to San Francisco Douglas worked in NYC for the investment bank Brown Brothers Harriman.

Jigar Patel, President, has been an instrumental leader in the California cannabis industry.  He is the founder of four state and locally compliant cannabis businesses, playing pivotal roles in real estate sourcing, entitlement, funding, design, build and operations.  He is an industry leader in bringing local regulatory compliance to many jurisdictions including San Francisco, Santa Rosa, and Sonoma County. His depth of knowledge of the rich history of California cannabis, regulation, cultivation, and sales in a compliant marketplace provides a distinct advantage to achieving NCC’s business objectives.  An experienced entrepreneur, Mr. Patel has also been the founder of a successful Sonoma County winery, Jigar Wines. As President of NorCal Cannabis Company, Mr. Patel is responsible for oversight of all operations.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Anne Donohoe and Nick Opich of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter / Instagram: @KCSA_Cannabis

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/green-rush-comms/

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/KCSACannabiz/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

 

Taylor West, Senior Communications Director at COHNNABIS

Taylor West, Senior Communications Director for the cannabis branding and marketing company COHNNABIS, is our first official guest of 2019 on the Green Rush! As you know, the Green Rush is a part of the fantastic MJ Today media family which includes podcasts like Marijuana Today where Taylor appears as one of the regulars. In this week’s episode, Lewis and Anne chat with Taylor about her deep roots in drug policy reform, her personal background and how she came to join the cannabis space via her work with NCIA and what the future holds for the future of cannabis branding and marketing.

To kick off the episode this week, we have friend of the podcast and everyone’s favorite recurring guest, Alan Brochstein of New Cannabis Ventures and 420 Investor providing us with his take on the story we all should be paying attention to.

Enjoy!

 

Taylor West is senior communications director for COHNNABIS, a full-service brand, marketing, digital, and public relations agency dedicated to the unique needs of the cannabis industry. Prior to joining COHNNABIS in August 2017, Taylor spent nearly four years as deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA). At NCIA, she oversaw marketing, communications, and media relations, often serving as a spokesperson for the organization and for the industry as a whole. Before joining the cannabis industry, Taylor spent four years working in Washington, D.C., first as a strategist for a variety of policy and regulatory reform efforts, and then as communications director for National Journal, a highly respected national media organization. She is also a veteran of several high-profile political campaigns and has appeared as a commentator on MSNBC, Fox News, CNBC, PBS, and NPR. Taylor first became involved in drug policy reform 20 years ago with an internship at DRCNet, now known as StoptheDrugWar.org.

Links to guest’s social media:

Links and Mentions:

Show Credits:

This episode was hosted by Lewis Goldberg and Anne Donohoe of KCSA Strategic Communications.

Special thanks to our Producer Nick Opich and Program Director Shea Gunther at Marijuana Today

You can learn more about how KCSA Cannabis can help your cannabiz by visiting www.kcsa-cannabis.com or emailing greenrush@kcsa.com. You can also connect with us via our social channels:

Twitter / Instagram: @KCSA_Cannabis

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/green-rush-comms/

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/KCSACannabiz/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuEQkvdjpUnPyhF59wxseqw?disable_polymer=true

 

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