Introducing the Brand-New “US Cannabis Council”

March 5, 2021

Welcome back to the CLEAResources ComplianceCommando™  Blog! Today we look at the newly formed U.S. Cannabis Council, it’s composition, objectives, and focus on ethical business rooted in the boardroom.

A large consortium of over 40 businesses, associations, and advocacy groups have mobilized to form the United States Cannabis Council, a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. Leading the Council as  interim CEO is Steve Hawkins. Many multi-state operators have decided to join the organization. This type of cannabis consortium, which is similar to the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA), will prove to be very beneficial in crafting new legislation legalizing medical and adult-use cannabis and shaping the values of the industry. 

In an article from JDSUPRA by Kirsten Hart called “US Cannabis Council Sets Its Sights on Sweeping Federal Cannabis Reforms,” the council described its mission statement as “building a future of legal access to cannabis delivered through an equitable and values-driven industry by advancing cannabis legalization at federal and state levels, and promoting restorative justice for communities harmed by cannabis prohibition.” We added the bold there to emphasize the incorporation of values into the mission statement. And “values-driven” it seems – and we love it. What values will drive the Council, though? Clearly, social equity. The group plans social equity efforts to advocate for expungement of charges and release of people held on cannabis-related charges, will strive to improve safety standards, and “bring single-policy agenda to Congress.” All of these goals are directed at improving safe access to cannabis consumers in an ethical market built on fairness.

In the article “US Cannabis Council Launches” by Benji Cooper for the Candid Chronicles, Mr. Hawkins describes how one in every five board seats will be reserved for certain areas of focus for the industry – in essence, specific values. These seats will be filled by members from businesses and other participating groups to ensure that standards in the cannabis industry are made and met on federal and state levels. A Business Wire article about the Council mentioned some of the specialties included in these reserved seats will focus strongly on environmental policy and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) – two of the main elements of corporate ESG. CLEAResources addressed the importance of both DEI and ESG in recent blog posts.  Can you imagine the power of selecting board members specifically for their background and expertise in the core values of the business? Certainly, there is no question that approach establishes an unshakeable tone at the top.

We look forward to seeing and writing about the Council’s progress and success in shaping the cannabis industry! 


Article References:

“US Cannabis Council Sets Its Sights on Sweeping Federal Cannabis Reforms” by Kirsten Hart for JDSUPRA.

“US Cannabis Council Launches” by Benji Cooper for Candid Chronicles.

“Top Cannabis Businesses, Associations, and Advocacy Organizations Join Forces to Launch USCC” for Business Wire.

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