MATTHEW COHEN is the Founder and CEO of TRiQ, the leading cannabis supply chain solution provider for the emerging legal cannabis industry worldwide. Mr. Cohen is a long time medical cannabis activist and entrepreneur, with 15 years' experience spanning all of the seed to sale sectors of the medical cannabis business in California. He served as the Director of Supply Chain for the Harborside Health Center, Oakland, (the world's largest medical marijuana dispensary), the Co-Founder and Vice Chairman of the Emerald Grower's Association, Garberville (the trade association for the cannabis industry in Northern California's Emerald Triangle region), the CEO and Founder of Northstone Organics, Ukiah, (California's first licensed producer of medical cannabis), the Co-Founder and President of AmeriCann Compliance (third-party processing company serving Mendocino County's licensed farms), and Co-Founder and Chairman of MendoGrown, Ukiah, (Mendocino County's medical cannabis trade association which was instrumental in aiding the county in drafting its 9.31 cultivation ordinance). He is a renowned expert, advocate, and frequent speaker on cannabis production and was retained by BOTEC Analysis Corporation to advise the Washington State Liquor Control Board on its implementation of Washington Initiative 502. Mr. Cohen is also a featured character in Doug Fine's Too High to Fail (Gotham Books 2012).
WENDELL LEE is Vice President and General Counsel of the Wine Institute, the public policy advocacy group of more than 1000 California wineries and affiliated businesses that represents 85 percent of U.S. wine production and 90 percent of U.S. wine exports. Mr. Lee is a frequent speaker and guest lecturer on wine law issues and regulations impacting the wine industry. Prior to joining the Wine Institute, he served as a Deputy District Attorney for the City and County of San Francisco. Mr. Lee received his B.A. from the University of Hawaii and his J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of Law.
RICHARD P. MENDELSON
RICHARD P. MENDELSON (Moderator), is Of Counsel at Dickenson, Peatman & Fogarty, Napa, and also is the Director of the Wine Law and Policy Program at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, where he teaches classes on wine law and appellations of origin. He is an internationally-recognized expert on vineyard and wine law and related land use, intellectual property, business and administrative law issues. He has written and lectured extensively on these subjects and is the author of two wine law titles—From Demon to Darling: A Legal History of Wine in America (UC Press 2009) and Wine in America: Law and Policy (Wolters Kluwer 2011). Mr. Mendelson is a founding member and past president of the International Wine Law Association, headquartered in Paris. He is a grower and wine proprietor himself, producing Mendelson Pinot Gris and Muscat Canelli dessert wines, and Santa Lucia Highlands and Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs. Mr. Mendelson received his B.A., magna cum laude, from Harvard College, his M.A. from Oxford University, and his J.D. from Stanford Law School.
RANDY SIMMONS is the Deputy Director of the Washington State Liquor Control Broad ("WSLCB"). In December 2012, he was appointed the project implementation manager for Washington Initiative 502 ("I-502"), which provides for the licensing and regulation of marijuana production, distribution, and possession for person over 21 in the State of Washington. Mr. Simmons' team is charged with formulating and enforcing the rules governing the marijuana industry in Washington. In November 2013, he was named one of the year's most influential people by Seattle Magazine. He has been referred to as the "ganja guru" in the media, and has quickly become a nationwide expert on the challenges associated with the marijuana legalization and regulation. Prior to his current appointment, Mr. Simmons served as the Director of the Finance and Administrative Services Divisions of the WSLCB. In 2006, he received the Governor's Award for Leadership in Management. Before his years of public service, Mr. Simmons spent 23 years in a private company in Olympia, beginning his career as a pension administrator and then holding positions in both finance and marketing. Mr. Simmons received his B.S. from St. Martin's College, and pursued post-graduate work in Entrepreneurial Studies at Babson College and in Management Science at The American College. He holds the professional designations of CLU, FLMI, and LLIF.