Kimberly Stuck was the first Marijuana Specialist for the Denver Department of Environmental Health, and therefore, the first Marijuana Specialist for a public health authority in the Nation. Conducting compliance inspections, license sign-offs, running pesticide investigations, writing press releases, conducting recalls, conducting shelf stability and CBD source approvals, she’s done it all. The industry lovingly started calling her the “weed-whacker,” primarily because she has disposed of 28 million dollars of Cannabis/Cannabis products in 2016 alone, due to non-compliance. She has greatly helped Colorado develop requirements, and has also helped California Department of Public Health (CDPH) develop their regulations. She has knowledge of all local, state and federal cannabis and health regulations. During the years as a regulator, she grew a love for the industry and the people in it. While working as a regulator, she noticed a huge gap in the industry when it came to Compliance Consultants. She knew she could make a huge difference and save cannabis companies millions through active preventative measures, if she started her own company, and has already been named one of the 13 women who will help shape the cannabis industry. With the support of the industry, she decided to launch Allay Cannabis Consulting. The company’s goal is to help the cannabis industry thrive on a global scale.
Company: Allay Consulting, LLC
Years at current company: 3 years in July
Education profile: BA in Human Nutrition, CP-FS, CQA.
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Becoming a CP-FS (Certified Professional – Food Safety) and being a Public Health Investigator for the DDPHE (Denver Department of Environmental Health), it was a great job and I was fortunate to be offered the position. I had a lot of food safety training before taking on this job, but it was this position that gave me the opportunity to first work in the cannabis industry. Without that opportunity, I would have never been able to reach the goals I have so far, in the industry that I love.
Company Mission: To use our unique set of knowledge and skills to assist the cannabis industry in producing safe, consistent, and compliant products. We also want to help protect cannabis workers, and to help normalize the cannabis industry, as a whole, through education and certifications.
Company’s most successful achievement: We recently assisted with the Colorado CHAMP initiative (Colorado Hemp Advancement & Management Plan), and helped write the Colorado Hemp plan, which will be submitted to the USDA. We have partnered with four accredited certifying bodies that have agreed to certify cannabis companies to cGMP and ISO standards, and have helped many companies in the industry achieve their certification goals. We also opened another location in Portland, OR in December, and are continuing to grow our team.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): No. I saved enough money once I knew what I wanted to do, to be able to launch without a partner or outside capital.
Any plans on raising capital in the future? Not at this time. We have done pretty well without it so far, but I never say never.
Most important company 5-year goal: To continue to do good for the industry, treat our clients like family, and support them in any way we can to help them succeed. We want to keep growing the business organically, and only hire team members with the same love for the industry that our current team has. We are and will continue to be, involved in regulatory affairs in new, up-and-coming states, training regulators, and fighting for fair and safe regulations within the cannabis industry.
Company: Green Thumb Industries OTC:GTBIF / CannaVu
Years at current company: 5 years / recent
Syracuse University: Bachelor of Science, Finance and Marketing, 1988
Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management; MBA, Finance and Real Estate, 1993
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Following my entrepreneurial dream and creating WBS Equities, LLC which specializes in ground-up construction, renovation, development, sale-leaseback transactions and acquisitions of food manufacturing and food distribution facilities. I’m also incredibly proud of having co-founded Illinois Women in Cannabis in 2014 with GTI’s Senior Vice President of Government and Regulatory Affairs Dina Rollman. IWC connects, educates, mentors, and supports Illinois women of all ages and backgrounds in order to maximize their opportunities in the emerging Illinois cannabis industry.
Company Mission: GTI’s mission is to promote well-being through the power of cannabis. CannaVu’s is to provide advertisers the ability to purchase digital advertising while meeting and exceeding state and federal requirements.
Company’s most successful achievement: It’s hard to choose one “most successful” achievement for Green Thumb but I think what stands out most is how we’ve created the right team to thrive in a highly dynamic and evolving industry, and our diligent approach to capital allocation. CannaVu is the best at what it does and I’m excited about the achievements we’ll make this year.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes
If so, how much?: GTI has raised $250 million in equity since 2018 and $105 million in debt.
Any plans on raising capital in the future? We like the position of our balance sheet. With our recent sale and leaseback transactions and the cash flow generated from our business operations, our growth plans are funded, and we are optimistic about our future. CannaVu may raise capital this year.
Most important company 5-year goal: GTI wants to continue to expand access to Green Thumb’s branded cannabis products such as Beboe, Dogwalkers, Dr. Solomon’s, Incredibles, Rythm, and The Feel Collection that help the well-being of so many people. CannaVu wants to remain the premier platform for canna-compliant digital advertising.
Würk is the leading human capital management company for the cannabis industry. Keegan Peterson founded Wurk in 2015 after recognizing that cannabis businesses didn’t have access to the same scalable HR technology solutions as mainstream companies. Under his leadership, Wurk now serves hundreds of clients across 33 states, including some of the largest publicly traded cannabis corporations in the nation. Würk now pays one in ten employees in the cannabis industry.
Prior to founding Wurk, Peterson spent over a decade working for high-growth HR technology companies, developing a deep understanding of how to build and scale software solutions that automate critical HR functions of business operations.
Peterson is active in lifting up other entrepreneurs in the cannabis space. He is a mentor at Canopy Boulder and Canopy San Diego, a mentorship-driven, early-stage investment program for startups in the cannabis industry, with a focus on ancillary products and services. He is an outspoken public advocate and thought leader for the cannabis industry and is an associate producer on the 2018 documentary Weed The People, which aims to educate mainstream audiences about medical cannabis as a human rights issue.
Full name: Keegan Peterson
Title: CEO and founder
Years at current company: 5 years
Education profile: Keegan holds a BBA in Finance from Florida Atlantic University, graduating Cum Laude.
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Prior to founding Wurk, Keegan spent over a decade working for high-growth HR technology companies, developing a deep understanding of how to build and scale software solutions that automate critical HR functions of business operations.
Company Mission: Wurk was founded after Keegan recognized that cannabis businesses didn’t have access to the same scalable Payroll and HR technology solutions as mainstream companies. Despite numerous advancements in the legalization movement, cannabis companies still repeatedly experience cumbersome and preventable growth challenges, including being dropped by traditional workforce management vendors. Wurk exists in order to provide an HR and payroll platform specifically to serve the rapidly growing cannabis industry.
Company’s most successful achievement: Würk currently handles payroll for 1 in 10 employees in the cannabis industry nationwide, and powers some of the biggest names in cannabis including: Acreage Holdings, Aster Farms, Canndescent, Harvest, Flow Kana, Vangst, Curaleaf, GTI, and iAnthus.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): yes
if so, how much?: $18M
Any plans on raising capital in the future? Wurk is not actively pursuing additional financing at this time but open to investments that accelerate the growth of the company.
Most important company 5-year goal: Empower all the people of cannabis with 100% access to proper workforce management and payroll technology so they can continue to grow their companies.
Woman-owned and operated Peak Extracts was the first adult-use edibles producer licensed in Oregon and currently holds a position as the #2 cannabis chocolate manufacturer in the state. Originally founded in the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program in 2014, Peak Extracts is locally owned and based on principles of quality and integrity. Every Peak cannabis and hemp product is made using a proprietary in-house Terp-Lock™ extraction process that retains the character and effects of the original material.
Eastern Washington native Katie Stem started her first business at age 22 while in the Americorps VISTA entrepreneurial division. A graduate from Carleton College in 2002, majoring in pre-med and literature, she has extensive business and management experience, as well as more than 10 years of laboratory science background. While working for Washington State University and Oregon Health & Science University, she experimented in the fields of physiology, pharmacology and neurology using natural products and pharmaceutical interventions for human diseases. In 2010, she completed her degree in traditional Chinese medicine and became a nationally-certified licensed herbalist and acupuncturist.
Stem’s skills as both a scientist and herbalist are invaluable to Peak in formulation, R&D, and educational outreach. A medical cannabis patient since 2004, Katie has been heavily involved and connected within the community since the early days. Her battle with Crohn’s disease led her to explore alternatives to dangerous biologic and immunosuppressive drugs. Cannabis has been a powerful tool to manage her disease and she is a passionate educator and advocate within the industry. Stem maintains an acupuncture and herbal medicine practice in Portland that she’s had since 2010.
Full birth name: Katie Stem
Title: Founder and CEO
Company: Peak Extracts
Years at current company: 6
Education profile: B.A. in Pre-Med, English Literature Carleton College 2002, Masters of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (MaOM) Oregon College Of Oriental Medicine, 2010.
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis:
Starting and running a private Acupuncture and herbal medicine practice from 2010-present.
Company Mission: Using proprietary extraction techniques, Peak Extracts manufactures high-quality cannabis and hemp products that are uniquely customizable due to our Terp-LockTM process. Each strain-specific product has different medicinal and subjective effects, allowing the consumer to tailor their experience as they see fit.
Company’s most successful achievement:
I believe we’re in the midst of it! We’re maintaining operations with zero layoffs during a global pandemic and nationwide shut down. We’ve changed all of our procedures to uphold better than recommended sanitation and social distancing, and are still expanding our product line in anticipation of increased interest in online sales.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): No, we are entirely self-funded thus far.
Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes, hopefully sometime in 2020.
Most important company 5 year goal: Continued expansion of Peak Extracts’ hemp product line to reach the entire US and many venues abroad.
Peak’s hypoallergenic topical salve Rescue Rub is critically acclaimed and based on an exclusive combination of traditional Chinese herbal medicines used to treat inflammation, pain and blunt-force trauma. Peak Extracts’ vaporizer cartridges feature a focus on CBD, terpenes, and CBG and are the only CO2 cartridges available in the market that retains 95% or more of the original terpenes and flavonoids.
Peak Extracts’ best-in-class creations are found in more than 150 carefully selected retailers across Oregon. Find Your Peak — http://www.peakextracts.com
For Rick Batenburg III, a venture capitalist’s primary purpose is being a centralized ignition point to connect ideas, people and resources. Creating something tangible and meaningful out of nothing is the best way he knows how to contribute to society.
Through his venture fund, Cliintel Capital Management Group, Batenburg has acquired, built and grown cannabis companies across the supply chain, preparing for ubiquitous legalization across the globe starting in the epicenter of the cannabis universe, Colorado. Batenburg’s path to VC started with the early influence of his father, Richard Batenburg Jr., a cable industry executive and angel investor.
After Rick finished high school, he spent nearly four years playing Junior Hockey in Canada, followed by Business School at Nichols College in Massachusetts. He cut his teeth at Merrill Lynch in its Private Wealth division. His early work with his father in private deals, then again with Merrill Lynch, is where he developed a taste for venture capital and began looking for an entry point outside of the constraints of a large firm.
Education profile: Graduated from Nichols College (Massachusetts) with a degree in Business Finance and Management
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: I went to Merrill Lynch directly out of college. There I raised and managed $170 million in assets and took care of the syndicate “buys” for IPOs and secondary issues. In this role, I developed a specialty in bringing private equity alternatives to my portfolio.
Company Mission: Cliintel Capital Management Group (CCMG) is a venture firm focused on emerging markets, specifically cannabis. Our mission is broad: Acquire and build brands that will become the market leaders of the emerging international cannabis market. We will accomplish this by targeting acquisitions and partnerships with purpose; we are emotionally and financially invested in the success of our partners.
Company’s most successful achievement: CCMG became the first Qualified Institutional Investment capital firm in Colorado to own THC licensed facilities through a unique cannabis, blind pool venture fund. This led us to successfully acquire one of the most prolific brands in cannabis, The Clear line of concentrate products.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes.
Any plans on raising capital in the future?: Yes, we are always raising money to put into projects. Cannabis is a recession-proof investment, which means we can never stop looking for opportunities.
Most important company 5-year goal: Building household cannabis brands that consumers can create strong emotional connections with. We are set up to accomplish this by tirelessly searching for innovative new brands and products that have the potential to become widely recognized in North America and beyond. At the Infused Products Conference in Denver, Colorado, we will be holding an innovative pitch competition where entrepreneurs will be pitching us their most inspired cannabis product ideas. We will invest in the winner’s company and also provide them with the resources to bring their product to a national level.
Years at current company: Five years—I was one of the original founders when we started Coda Signature in 2015.
Education profile: I’m a classically trained chocolatier. I completed my studies in France at L’Ecole du Grand Chocolat in Tain-l’Hermitage, home of the Valrhona Chocolate Company.
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: I worked my way up in the culinary world for a decade, including upscale restaurants such as Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Bank in Houston and Thomas Keller’s Per Se in New York. Along the way, I developed a fascination for the potential of chocolate as a superfood—and also how it influences our psyches. It has a powerful ability to transport you to moments of nostalgia, to communicate love, to get you through tough times. I’m proud of the fact that I have been named one of Dessert Professional’s Top 10 Chocolatiers in North America and have gained so much knowledge about natural cacao while working as a raw, vegan chocolatier.
Company Mission: Coda Signature seeks to elevate the sensory experience of cannabis the way music elevates life. Inspired by both classical music and classical confections, Coda Signature creates cannabis-infused products full of imagination. The company has established itself as a leading luxury brand with products featuring bold flavor combinations and top-quality, natural ingredients.
Company’s most successful achievement: We have created a new standard for affordable indulgence in cannabis. Since we launched our original line of hand-painted truffles in 2016, we’ve defied industry norms, both in cannabis and in the mainstream culinary world. At a time when the rest of the industry was taking a formulaic approach to edibles, we were looking for ways to do it differently, experimenting with unexpected flavor combinations and beautiful designs. Now we’re seeing competitors out there bringing new flavors and inventive products, and we hope we’ve inspired the industry as a whole to move forward.
We don’t rest on our laurels, though. My goal is always to find new ways to innovate, whether expanding our medical product portfolio or breathing new life into the infused gummy. When developing products, I aim to create a moment in time. When someone tries a Coda Signature Coffee & Doughnuts chocolate bar, I want them to feel that perfect relaxing moment of a morning coffee break. When someone tastes a Coconut & Lime Fruit Note, I want them to get an immediate beachy, tropical vibe. We infuse our creations with emotion and excitement as much as we infuse them with cannabis.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no)?: Last year we raised $24.4 million in a Series A funding round.
Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes, we are looking to expand our operations to other markets in North America.
Most important company 5-year goal: As consumer tastes change and the culinary world evolves, Coda Signature will be pushing those trends forward in the cannabis world. For instance, we’re seeing demand for more wellness-conscious products, which is why we developed vegan, gluten-free Fruit Notes gummies—more to come there.
We’ll also be prioritizing market expansion. In five years, our hope is that customers across the nation will continue to find their moments of indulgence. Everyone who wants a quality cannabis consumption experience should be able to access it, and with each new market and product offering, we get closer to that goal.
Goldleaf brings a clear and credible perspective to the cannabis community by pairing compelling design with the latest peer-reviewed research, making the complex more approachable— beautiful, even. Specializing in guided notebooks and elegant print design for cannabis patients, growers and enthusiasts alike, Goldleaf products are available worldwide. Based in Cincinnati, Ohio, Goldleaf also provides custom design services for like-minded organizations around the world.
Full birth name: Charles McElroy
Title: Creative Director, Owner
Years at current company: 3.5
Education profile: B.S. from Ohio University, Masters track in Business Informatics from Miami University
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Co-founded a sustainable clothing company, had the 3rd highest-grossing Kickstarter campaign at the time (in the fashion category) and went on to build a 100% USA supply chain — from the cotton farm in Georgia, knitting, and garment dying in North Carolina, sewn in Tennessee — fulfilled in Cincinnati.
Goldleaf values science, pleasing design, and education. Our mission is to create universal access to cannabis research while cultivating individual, community, and environmental wellbeing.
Company’s most successful achievement:
We were the first to create guided journals specifically for cannabis cultivation and tracking medical therapy. We have since iterated on these initial designs and are now highly regarded for our dedication to accuracy and quality of information. Due to our approach to content creation — valuing vetted research and primary sources — we’ve garnered a stellar reputation for accuracy and integrity. This has led us to get a great deal of mainstream media attention.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): No
Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes.
Most important company 5 year goal:
We have worked hard to build our reputation and authority in the educational design space. We plan to leverage this brand equity by expanding our custom B2B design and packaging offerings, collaborations, and growing our team of researchers and designers.
Education profile: BS from Western Michigan University (1994)
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Previous to cannabis I was in the public higher education sector. I had plenty of experience interpreting rules for higher education like Title IV (federal financial aid), NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association), and college accreditation standards. While serving as the Graduation Services Advisors for the Colorado School of Mines I was able to motivate many students burned out from the rigorous program to stay focused and finish their degree. It brought me heartwarming pride to see “my students” walk across the stage at graduation.
Company Mission: Our mission is to maximize the value of our brands by promoting, marketing and licensing the brands through various distribution channels, including to dispensaries, wholesalers and distributors in the United States and internationally. CannAmerica Brands owns a portfolio of cannabis brands in the cannabis space currently in the states of Colorado, Nevada, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Massachusetts. Our core strategy is to enhance and monetize the global reach of our existing brands, and to pursue additional strategic acquisitions to grow the scope of and diversify our portfolio of brands.
Company’s most successful achievement:
Creating our Intellectual Property company to protect what our founders spent years creating was an early industry achievement that put our Company ahead of other cannabis companies. CannAmerica achieved a major milestone when we began trading on the Canadian Securities Exchange (“CSE”) under the symbol “CANA” on October 15th of 2018, when Canada announced federal legalization of cannabis. In December, CannAmerica also commenced trading on the OTCQB® Venture Market in the United States under the symbol “CNNXF.”
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): if so, how much?:
Yes, CannAmerica raised approximately $7 million via non-brokered private placements.
Any plans on raising capital in the future?
At this time, the Company is focused on operational success. Once current plans for expansion and new lines of products are in place, the Board will review the market temperature to determine the course of action for financing additional projects.
Most important company 5-year goal:
Expansion into more legal cannabis marketplaces, national hemp finished product sales, and additional lines of business to increase the revenues for the company and to create as many opportunities for brand expansion and acquisition.
Diana Anglin Bio:
Diana Anglin is a leader in cannabis regulatory compliance in the state of Colorado. She has assisted many companies to obtain licensing and prepare for opening of business. She served as Chair for Compliance Council of the Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce and held the position of Director of Compliance for two licensed marijuana companies. Currently she is the Chief Operating Officer for CannAmerica Brands Corp. Diana has been working in regulatory compliance for over 20 years. Her career started with helping young people navigate the college regulatory processes of Student Financial Aid, Graduation Services, and Enrollment Management.
Diana enjoys using her unusual sense of humor to raise money for local charities as well as using her free time to enjoy the many activities Colorado has to offer.
DT: University of Virginia McIntire School of Commerce (‘08, Concentrations in Finance and International Business), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Designation
KB: 5 Pilates Certifications
Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis:
DT: Covered over $2 billion in investments in the Consumer / Retail sector at Sands Capital
KB: In 2017 after teaching Pilates for 18 years including owning my own studio in Florida, I was honored to become a Lululemon ambassador in my hometown of NYC.
DT: Our goal for TribeTokes is to provide consumers with access to high quality, lab-tested cannabis-derived products at fair prices. We take the guess-work out of clean, sustainable, organic product selection because everything we offer is as functional and safe as it is beautiful and stylish. We serve our customers above all and pay special attention to customer service and education.
KB: Our team’s motto is “Mindful, Fit & Lit.” TribeTokes’ mission is and always will be to educate and elevate our customers. TribeTokes as a company respects plant science, supports mindful consumption and purveys top quality products with an elevated aesthetic for the “next-generation cannabis consumer.”
DT & KB: We are both motivated by the cannabis movement and feel obligated to stay as true to the culture as possible. As our mission is to educate and elevate, that very much runs parallel with our own goals of educating and elevating ourselves. TribeTokes is built by girls, supporting women in the cannabis industry. It’s an honor to be able to employ and empower women from our community to join the movement along as part of our ever-growing Tribe.
Company’s most successful achievement:
DT: Recently our brand was featured in Rolling Stone article written in response to the vaping crisis and the article mentioned our specific attention to detail when it comes to creating clean, safe, and transparent vape products. When we first entered the market, the CBD vape scene was dire – it is a very hard molecule to stabilize in a vape and very expensive, and even legitimate brands and farms were cutting corners. We advocated for “clean vaping” from day one and spent a year creating our proprietary strain-based formulations without fillers we identified as unhealthy. Since then, we’ve been taking extra attention to heavy metals testing and other aspects that help us provide the cleanest vapes possible. It’s been hours of meticulous work and it was an absolute honor to be recognized for that.
KB: I am so proud of the rapid emergence of our wellness and beauty lines, TRIBEauty and TribeRevive. Both launched this year, each line consists of two organic, clean plant-based beauty and wellness products each. We’ve seen so many beauty lines misusing CBD or using low-quality CBD so consumers wouldn’t really feel the powers of this plant. We knew we wanted to create something that customers would want to put on their skin so we only use all-natural ingredients. We started with one eye CBD-infused eye cream which quickly became a must-have. Our pain cream came next and was so popular we launched it in a higher milligram of CBD and we just launched our CBD Superfood face mask which is already become a fan-favorite. It’s exciting to continue to launch products within these lines that transform the ways our customers see the potential of CBD. CBD is a superfood that is perfect for anyone who wants natural remedies for the stress of everyday life and we’re creating a whole range of products to cater to those needs.
Has the company raised any capital (yes or no):
DT: Our company is 100% funded, bootstrapped and run by the women on the founding team (launch capital and profit reinvestment). We put our own money where our mouth is!
Any plans on raising capital in the future?
DT: I believe in raising capital when there is a profitable use of funds. We would raise money when it makes sense (for example, to invest in a license or to scale a profitable marketing channel). Many founders have a mindset that if they raise $2M in Series A they will be successful, which causes enormous pressure not only to spend the money but to grow at an unreasonable pace which can lead to irresponsible budgeting decisions. I always think of the Silicon Valley episode where Richard realizes he could have been successful if he raised LESS money.
For better or worse, bootstrapping results in rolling up your sleeves and doing a LOT yourself, and growing in a more measured and thoughtful way. We have tight control over our supply chain which is enormously helpful for cash flow management and maintaining the best quality product.
Most important company 5-year goal:
DT: When national sentiment and legalization align, we, of course, want to someday be both a CBD AND THC brand! We have built a community and customer base in New York and nationwide and want to leverage this consumer trust and our high product standards to sell THC products in addition to CBD. We’ve already become a resource and leader in plant wellness and CBD and we see similar potential for THC based products. We also want to make sure the voices and needs of female cannabis consumers are heard and met. The legal cannabis markets need more female leadership.
KB: Everything that Dege said; we really need to see more female-founded brands and female-led investors in the cannabis industry There aren’t enough brands that truly understand what the female cannabis consumer needs and we’re trying to fill that gap. We also cannot wait for CBD and THC to be accessible for everyone. Dege and I love the culture and as we push the movement forward, we push ourselves. We see the improvements that can be made in cannabis and want the same potential for CBD to be met for innovative THC products that are mindful, fit and lit!
The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis