NJ Cannabis Insider and Advance 360 will be hosting a webinar “Cannabis and COVID-19: Where Does America Go From Here? presented by Duane Morris” on May 13, featuring national leaders in the cannabis space to discuss marijuana and hemp policy.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, who recently introduced legislation that would make cannabis businesses eligible for Small Business Administration COVID-19 relief programs, will be joining us as the keynote speaker.
We’re compiling questions to ask the Congressman and other speakers during the scheduled two-hour program, which begins 1 p.m. EST (10 a.m. PST).
Some of the questions we’ll ask our panelists:
- 2020 was supposed to be a banner year for cannabis legalization, but COVID and internal state politics have slowed this up. Which states still hold promise for cannabis reform and adult-use legalization this year?
- The illicit market continues to eat up a significant share of the market in every state. What’s needed to make the regulated market more competitive?
- When is the industry going to see relief with respect to banking and financing?
Blumenauer represents Oregon’s 3rd Congressional District and is a leading advocate for cannabis policy reform in the House of Representatives, and the founder and co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus.
“Cannabis businesses are sources of economic growth and financial stability for thousands of workers and families, and need our support. Congress must step in and make these badly needed reforms during these challenging times,” Blumenauer said.
Along with the congressman, several industry power players will be taking part in the two-hour panel discussions, they are:
Karen O’Keefe is the director of state policies for Marijuana Policy Project. In her current role, she manages’s MPP’s grassroots and direct lobbying efforts in many state legislatures. O’Keefe has played a significant role in passing more than a dozen major cannabis policy reforms, including managing MPP’s state legislative department during the legalization campaigns in Vermont and Illinois.
Steve Hoffman, the chairman of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, has an extensive background in business and finance having served as a senior executive in the management consulting and technology industries. Most recently, he was the CEO of two venture capital backed start-ups: ThinkFire and Exchange Solutions.
Joy Beckerman, founder of Hemp Ace International, which provides consulting, legal support and expert witness testimony, is one of the country’s leading voices for the hemp industry. She is the regulatory officer and industry liaison for Elixinol. A senior advisor to Colorado Hemp Works, she also is an executive at the U.S. Hemp Roundtable and the U.S. Hemp Authority.
Imani Dawson serves as the vice president and managing partner of MJM Strategy, a minority-led strategic consulting group for the cannabis industry, as the founder and president for Tribe Called Curl Media and as communications director for Minorities for Medical Marijuana.
Chris Melillo, senior vice president of retail operations for Curaleaf, is currently tasked with spearheading the company’s dispensary expansion rollout and establishing a consistent customer experience for retail stores across the U.S. He previously served as senior director of stores in North America for Nike, and as vice president of stores for DTLR/Villa, a leading footwear and apparel retailer.
Katie Neer, the director of government affairs for Acreage Holdings, a multi-state cannabis operator. Neer focuses on state regulatory and legislative issues facing the cannabis industry. Prior to her role with Acreage Holdings, Neer practiced law and formerly served as the assistant secretary for general government and financial services in the New York State Governor’s Office.
Paul Josephson, a partner at Duane Morris is a constitutional and regulatory litigator who advises CEOs, elected officials, and agency heads on a broad spectrum of matters involving significant public interests or highly regulated by government agencies. He currently represents the alternative treatment center, GTI-NJ, as well as the Gateway Program Development Corporation on the $13 billion Hudson Rail Tunnel project.
Justin Zaremba, an NJ Cannabis Insider editor and a longtime news reporter for NJ.com, will moderate the discussion.
The focused conversation will revolve around medical marijuana, legalization and the hemp and CBD industries during the coronavirus pandemic — while looking ahead at the Nov. 3 national elections.
After the live event, attendees will have an opportunity to continue the discussion and network in a closed forum, moderated by journalists covering marijuana and hemp industries.
To reserve tickets, go to advance360.com/cannabis-insider-live.
NJ Cannabis Insider, a local sponsor, is a weekly subscriber-based trade journal produced by NJ Advance Media, which has also produced several live events in the past two years. For this event, it has has partnered with Advance Local sister media groups across the country, including Staten Island Advance, Advance Media New York, PennLive, LehighValleyLive, MassLive, MLive, Advance Ohio and Oregonian Media Group.
For more information, you may reach us via email here.