Don D. Duncan
Sacramento, CA * email@example.com
Licensing, Compliance, Government Affairs, Operations: Cannabis Industry
Cannabis marketplace visionary—with 10+ years progressive experience in operations, business development, government relations, community engagement, state & local licensing, legislative advocacy, regulatory compliance, business strategy, and more.
· Bottom-Line Impact: Founded / co-founded numerous cannabis & medical cannabis businesses generating up to $20M / year, i.e., Berkeley Patients Group, Cannabis Buyers Cooperative of Berkeley, Patients Care Collective, Los Angeles Patients & Caregivers Group, California Patients Group, Desert Organic Solutions Collective, others.
· Legislative Advocate: Deep background influencing legislative and regulatory processes; introduced groundbreaking local regulations / licensing; worked with advocate coalitions to promote, adopt CA’s 1st state licensing bill (2015)—quashed decade-plus deadlock by assembling teams with labor, law enforcement, local government, industry. Partner with legislators / licensing agencies on legislation, regulation; plan, execute local, state, national grassroots campaigns.
· Licensing & Compliance Subject Matter Expert (SME): Expertise in local and state cannabis licensing & compliance earned 30+ licenses for all phases of cannabis businesses, with industry-leaders, celebrities, deeply-backed startups.
· Industry Thought Leader: Appeared in/on the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, 60 Minutes, Dan Rather Reports, Retirement Living TV, issue-specific publications; deep public speaking, presentation background.
· Medical Cannabis Proponent: Co-founded, serve on board of Americans for Safe Access Foundation (ASA), US’s #1 medical cannabis patient advocacy organization—leveraging expertise in local and state cannabis regulations to work with legislators, regulators, stakeholders to adopt, launch, refine cannabis laws & policies for patients; key role in creating ASA’s Patient-Focused Certification, an ISO/IEC 17065 nonprofit, 3rd-party certification body serving the medical cannabis industry.
· Orchestrating Government Relations: Initiate, cultivate relationships with local and state governments; track and research government initiatives impacting cannabis business, clients.
· Operations Expertise: Deliver vision, direction, strategy, leadership, management; ensure appropriate operational controls, administrative and reporting procedures, and people systems are in place to grow organizations, guarantee financial strength, operating efficiency.
Legislative Advocacy / Lobbying • Local & State Licensing Applications • Regulatory Compliance • Innovation & Idea Management • Retail Expansion • Liaising with Elected Officials • Continual Process Improvement • Rolodex of Local / State / National Government Contacts • Business Trend Analysis • Change Agent • Planning & Executing Strategies • Influencing Government Decisions • Relationship Management • Strong Analytical / Problem-Solving Skills •
People & Resource Management • MS Office Suite / Google Suite • Retail Operations / Management •
Training & Development • Consumer Advocacy
Cannabis Licensing Specialist, Cultivation Sector Consulting; Makawao, HI; 2018 – present
Help facilitate granting of cannabis license applications by developing licensing materials, standard operating procedures (SOP); provide 1:1 consulting for cannabis entrepreneurs, startups.
Government Affairs, Compliance, Licensing, BHC Consultants, LLC; Los Angeles, CA; 2011 – present
Deliver licensing and compliance services for clients across California (i.e., Sacramento, Berkeley, Oakland, West Hollywood, Monterey County). Execute government relations initiatives at local, state levels.
· Secured 20+ state licenses and local Conditional Use Permits for cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, distribution, retail.
Director Government Affairs, Chief Operating Officer, Patients Care Collective / CA Cannabis Distribution Co.; Berkeley, CA; 2019 – 2021
Orchestrated all local and state legislative and regulatory initiatives for cannabis retailer, distributor; developed SOPs; worked with CEO to craft and enact the business plan, expansion strategy.
· Served as COO of multijurisdictional vertically-integrated cannabis businesses.
Director of Government Affairs, Chief Operations Officer, Foxworthy Farms; Santa Rosa, CA; 2019 – 2021
Served as COO of multijurisdictional vertically-integrated cannabis grower; managed local government and community relations strategies; operated as investor liaison.
· Bottom-lined outdoor and mixed light Conditional Use Permit application—successfully navigating the unorthodox process.
· Partnered with CEO to develop and launch the business and strategic plans.
Licensing & Compliance Specialist, Independent Cannabis Business Consultant; Nationwide; 2005 – 2018
Secured licenses and permits for clients across CA, CO, NJ, HI, WA; developed SOPs (standard operating procedures) for cannabis businesses.
· Provided licensing, compliance, and operational support for cannabis businesses.
Founder, Owner / Operator, Los Angeles Patients & Caregivers Group; West Hollywood, CA; 2004 – 2017
Created, launched, managed one of South California’s earliest legally organized, 100%-licensed patient collectives/cannabis retailers; created ~$10M+ in annual sales; directed 25-person medical cannabis staff.
· Co-developed regulatory ordinance for medical cannabis facilities by working with elected officials, stakeholders.
Co-Owner, Board Member, Consultant, CannBe (formerly Harborside Mgmt. Assoc.); Oakland, CA; 2010 – 2011
Co-founded high-end cannabis consultancy with SMEs serving wealthy clients, celebrities—and startups across CA, NM, AZ, Washington, DC. Co-created novel cannabis business consulting model with former Harborside CEO Steve D’Angelo.
· Created, submitted, managed license and permit applications for medical cannabis organizations.
Co-Founder, Owner / Operator, Berkeley Patients Group; Berkeley, CA; 2000 – 2009
Co-founded, launched, grew early cannabis retailer; earned one of California’s first city business licenses for cannabis retail.
• Generated ~$20M in annual revenue; led ~70-person staff.
Owner / Operator, President, California Patients Group; Los Angeles, CA; 2006 – 2007
Established flagship medical cannabis patients collective. Created $5M in annual revenue; managed 30-person team.
Co-Founder, Board of Directors, California Director, Americans for Safe Access Foundation; Washington, DC; 2002–present
Co-founded, help lead US’s #1 medical cannabis patient advocacy organization navigating obstacles to access cannabis for therapeutic use, research. Co-create, lead campaigns locally, statewide, federally; promote and adopt regulatory ordinances in cities statewide; function as a media spokesperson.
· Catalyzed adoption of California’s first medical cannabis licensing & regulation bill, 2015.
· Sponsored, passed Medical Cannabis Organ Transplant Act.
Co-Founder, Committee Member, Auditor, Patient Focused Certification; Washington, DC; 2013 – present
Helped achieve first ISO / IEC 17065 Certification, Product Certification Bodies Accreditation Standards. Created standards for cannabis businesses with American Herbal Product Association. Serve on Risk Management, Peer Review Committees.
BA, University of North Texas; Denton, TX
Coursework, Business Administration, UC Berkeley Extension