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 heavies in the cannabis space to discuss national and regional cannabis 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.
“As Congress seeks to provide relief to small businesses across America, chief among those being left out are state-legal cannabis businesses that are essential to communities and have met the demands of this crisis,” Blumenauer told NJ Cannabis Insider. “We should include state-legal cannabis in federal COVID-19 response efforts. Without providing these businesses the relief needed to carry out the recommended public health and worker-focused measures, we are putting these hard-working people – and ourselves – at risk.”
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. 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 played a significant role in MPP’s medical marijuana campaigns in Montana in 2004 and Rhode Island in 2006, and has managed MPP’s state legislative department during the legalization campaigns in Vermont and Illinois.
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 and an associate at Greenberg Traurig. In this work, she helps her clients navigate New York State legislative and regulatory issues. Before joining the firm, she served as the assistant secretary for general government and financial services in the New York State Governor’s Office.
Paul Josephson of 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.
Audience members will be able to post questions in advance of the May 13 webinar, which starts 1 p.m. EST (10 a.m. PST). 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, Staten Island Advance, Advance Media New York, PennLive, MassLive, MLive Media Group, Advance Ohio and Oregonian Media Group.