Prior to coming into the cannabis industry I worked in the Federal government for 20 years. I’d left a Senior Executive position with the Department of Defense and I was looking for something where I could use my management and administrative skills. Around 2015 I started investigating the cannabis industry - attending conferences, finding organizations, and working to build a network. Around the same time I also started volunteering with Americans for Safe Access and Law Enforcement Action Partnership (LEAP). I met Shaleen at LEAP, learned about THC Staffing, and then pretty much stalked the website until I saw a couple of opportunities where I thought I’d be competitive.
Chief Operating Officer
Cannabis Control Commission
Senior Executive with theDepartment of Defense
General Manager, Takoma Wellness Center
I knew of Tacoma Wellness from my research and I’d heard the owners speak at different conferences. I really admired their approach to medical marijuana, so it was a brand that I could believe in. Coming into my first job in a long time in the private sector, it also looked like a place where I was going to learn a lot. Plus there were not a lot of cannabis jobs in my area at the time, so while I was willing to relocate, the fact that I didn’t have to was pretty exciting.
Working with THC Staffing was great. I put my application in through the website and since I’d met Shaleen and seen her at a couple different conferences, I also sent her a note asking if she’d be willing to put my resume before the team even though I probably wasn’t their typical candidate. I would end up working mainly with Shaleen for about 3 months, and in June 2017 I was hired as General Manager with Takoma Wellness.
And it’s been great. One of the things I like is getting to use those managerial and administrative skills. Another part I’ve really liked is building a team, and I’m really proud of the team we have – I think we represent the brand really well. I also really enjoy the customers who come in every day. One of the reasons I wanted to come into the industry was that I used to be a public servant who never dealt with the public, so I wanted to go back to interacting with people. The patients who come in are just wonderful. To be able to hear from them the difference that cannabis has made in their lives, to literally see patients who came in during cancer treatments and they’ve got their hair back, they’re walking, they’re back at work – it’s just so satisfying.
One of the things that I liked about THC Staffing that I have not experienced with other recruiters in cannabis, defense, or other industries is the follow up. I heard from Shaleen a couple months after my placement, I’ve heard from Danielle a few times. The fact that they are staying in touch with me means a lot, it doesn’t feel like I’m a transaction. Once of the things I really value about Tacoma Wellness is how much they live the brand, and I appreciate that same thing about THC Staffing: they really live the values that they want to create in the cannabis industry. I know how hard it is to built that into an organization and carry it out, so I really admire and appreciate that.
I’m a lawyer and I’d had about 6 months of cannabis industry experience working as an independent contractor for a startup.
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During networking sessions and when I’m giving speeches about how I entered the industry, I encourage people to get involved with staffing firms like THC Staffing
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