I look out upon twenty founders representing ten cannabis startups every day and think about the sacrifice and commitment they have made to be part of our first class. Many left safe and secure jobs in corporate America staking their reputations on the promise of potential of this cannabis industry. They have entrusted the CanopyBoulder team with great responsibility in this leap, and it is something we take very seriously.
Our CanopyBoulder team pledge is to close the gap between investors and entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry, integrate best practices when it comes to business sustainability, profitability and performance, and ingrain a commitment to the industry’s advocacy groups from launch. Our thesis is that by participating early in the launch of new businesses, we can have a meaningful impact on the trajectory they take for many years to come.
In this effort, we have consciously hired a staff of professional and driven individuals. Micah Tapman, CanopyBoulder Program Manager and Partner, brings years of experience as an entrepreneur and early stage investor to our team. With leadership skills developed as a United States Marine Corp Sargeant, business training gained at The George Washington University School of Business, and real world experience leading a team at SAIC solving some of the most challenging technical problems facing our country, Micah brings a nuanced understanding of how to build and scale a business to maximum return and is running point on our program.
Dustin McInnis is a CanopyBoulder Program Associate and our lead video content producer. Relocating from L.A. to participate in CanopyBoulder, Dustin adds a refined storytelling acumen to the team and a systematic troubleshooting approach to the office. We are very lucky to have Dustin taking a lead on video and keeping the office humming.
Lisa Buffo is also a CanopyBoulder Program Associate and brings her experiences as the Marketing Coordinator for the Bizdom accelerator to our accelerator. Lisa has wasted no time making herself invaluable in the early stages of CanopyBoulder, helping us integrate the lessons learned at Bizdom into our program. Lisa moved to Colorado specifically to join the cannabis industry and we have high expectations for Lisa to be part of the Canopy family long into the future, hopefully as an entrepreneur herself. Cannabis industry, remember her name – Lisa Buffo.
And finally, I would be remiss without mentioning founding partner, Mark Nottoli. Mark has been generous with his resources and time to launch CanopyBoulder, acting as a mentor and sounding board for me in this venture. Mark has been present and supportive at every step of the way in his role as Founding Partner and CanopyBoulder wouldn’t exist without his leadership.
With the first week of CanopyBoulder behind us, all the founders are beginning to feel the opportunity pressure to accelerate the development of their businesses. Demo day on June 29th at the National Cannabis Industry Association is just three months away. A healthy sense of collaboration and competition amongst the teams is developing. It’s less discussed, but each team is competing for a limited supply of capital. The CanopyBoulder staff has worked hard to prepare for the arrival of our 10 teams. We’ll work even harder over the next 13 weeks helping them accelerate their businesses. There’s no uncertainty what lies at the end of the 13 weeks. I’m excited to see who rises to the occasion on June 29th.