Mr. Vincent E. Norment is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Marijuana Hall of Fame, a member of the Board of Directors of CannAmerica Brands Corp. (OTC: CNNXF), and a United States Marine Corps veteran. The Marijuana Hall of Fame is focused on the promotion of cannabis businesses and pioneers who have individually made an impact on the legalization of cannabis, innovation in cannabis products or processes, or have contributed to the large-scale normalization of cannabis use for medicinal or adult use. In short, the Marijuana Hall of Fame Museum gives the industry participants a place to visit, celebrate the history of cannabis, and something to be proud of after decades of the negative stigma surrounding the plant.
- When did you formally enter the cannabis space? My path to cannabis was paved in pain. I am an Englewood, Chicago native who attended the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff where I played football for the HBCU and later served in the U. S. Marines as a Sergeant. By 2008, my knees were shot, but I was weary of pharmaceutic drugs, so I started using CBD after being turned on to the primary non-psychoactive compound commonly found in cannabis. It started working and I started feeling better.
- What made you decide to work in the cannabis industry? I felt called to the industry because society and the government have ignored the social and economic toll of our marijuana laws for too long. I personally echo others who believe that no person should be sentenced to a lifetime of hardship because of a marijuana arrest. It is unethically bad, economically nonsensical, and an unnecessary strain on our already strained police departments and law enforcement officials. Even more unjust is that the burden of these low-level drug charges falls on minority communities, hindering their God-given right to thrive and build a brighter future for themselves and their families. I am proud to stand on the side of justice by advocating legislation change to begin righting the wrongs of decades of misinformed drug policy and make marijuana legal in all 50 states.
- Do you feel there is more opportunity for Black Americans in the cannabis industry versus a more traditional industry? Yes or no and why? No, but I hope there is a turnaround soon. But when you see states like Illinois that created a failed social equity program that was supposed to grant cannabis licenses for minorities (people of color) and women in 2020 since going recreational to this day, February 20, 2022, there are still NO people of color or women-owned Operating Recreational Dispensary in the state. As a multi-state awarded license holder in Illinois, it’s very frustrating to me to watch over two billion dollars of cannabis revenue brought into the state of Illinois over the past two years (2020 to 2021) with not one dollar being generated by minorities or women. And New Jersey is just as bad after issuing out 56 cannabis licenses NOT ONE was issued to Black Owner since legalizing weed. It’s disproportionate in other states as well.
- What is the most successful social equity effort in your opinion? Can be a charity or company program. M. Hall of Fame Inc has a non-for-profit charity called IT HELPS (H.E.L.P.S.) which stands for “Healing Every Living Person System.” IT HELPS focus on the history of cannabis and educating the public on the medical benefits of the cannabis plant. Also, in my opinion, companies like CannAmerica Brands (Denver, Colorado) and Redwood Cultivation (Las Vegas, Nevada) has strong social equity ties, which is why I’m excited to be working with CannAmerica Brands and Redwood Cultivation because their mission goes beyond cannabis as a business and has an additional focus of promoting diversity and inclusion in the industry. I’m also proud to be working closely with the Company’s founder and CEO Dan Anglin, who is also a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, as our shared experience in the most respected military service in the world has already forged a strong relationship that will help us guide this Company into the future together. That’s why I felt a partnership between the two, Redwood CEO Paul Schloss and Dan company could be a force in the cannabis industry. As far as a state is concerned, Oklahoma has the most successful Grower, Processor, Dispensary, and Transporter Application hands down for minorities (people of color) and women than any other state.
- What is your personal goal for 2022? As the founder of the Marijuana Hall of Fame, my personal goal in 2022 is to continue to make equity a priority in the cannabis space for minorities and women. To encourage all individuals to do their research thoroughly. They study, learn, and obtain as much knowledge about the cannabis/marijuana industry as possible. Learn about the different legislations, compliances, policies, and laws from state to state. Education is the key to knowing who the major players are and thought leaders in this rapidly growing business.