SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Parent Company (NEO: GRAM.U) (OTCQX: GRAMF), California’s leading vertically integrated cannabis company, is pleased to announce that George Atallah, Marcia Dyson, Jeff Gray, Faith Leach, Carmen Perez, Mary Pryor and Angela Rye have been named to the advisory committee of the company’s corporate venture capital social equity initiative.
With an initial funding of $10 million, plus 2% of all future net income, The Parent Company’s social equity fund seeks to discover the industry’s future entrepreneurs of color, offering them the capital and mentorship necessary to build generational wealth as part of a more equitable and diverse cannabis industry.
“We established this fund to help break down the systematic barriers that Black and other minority entrepreneurs face as they seek to secure meaningful participation, growth and leadership in this multi-billion-dollar industry,” said The Parent Company Board Member and Chief Social Equity Officer Desiree Perez. “I’m proud of the impressive group of advisors that has agreed to join us in this mission and look forward to working together towards our vision of a legal cannabis industry in which Black and minority entrepreneurs have the opportunity to build peak levels of success and value for their communities.”
The fund’s advisory committee assembles a powerhouse group of thought leaders across cannabis, civil rights activism, criminal justice reform, policy advocacy and impact investing to serve as a crucial sounding board on all investment and partnership opportunities, while offering invaluable mentorship to the fund’s management team, portfolio companies and non-profit partners.
About the Advisory Committee Members
George Atallah – Assistant Director of External Affairs, NFL Players Association
George Atallah is the Assistant Executive Director of External Affairs for the NFL Players Association and has served in his role since May of 2009. Atallah manages the NFLPA’s strategic communications, including media relations, crisis management, digital content and social media. Atallah’s extensive professional experience constitutes financial services, non-profit organizations, international affairs, government and politics. Through his career, Atallah has developed media relations and crisis communications strategies, and implemented corporate communications plans across various sectors. Atallah was born in Lebanon and immigrated to New York City. He grew up in Queens, NY, went to Archbishop Molloy High School and attended Boston College receiving a B.A. in English and Philosophy. He later received an M.B.A. from the George Washington University.
Marcia Dyson – CEO, Women’s Global Initiative
Marcia L. Dyson is one of America’s most respected civic-social activists and communication specialists. She is an exclusive national and international consultant in matters of business development, marketing, political strategy and social responsibility. Dyson is the founder of Women’s Global Initiative (WGI), a for-profit entity to enhance the lives of women via “profitable and purposeful social engagement.” WGI services include exclusive event planning, strategic partnerships and a speaker’s bureau. Dyson has been championing for women’s rights globally for over 20 years. She was selected to be on the Women’s Global Summit Leadership board by former Secretary of State Madeline Albright. Dyson is a member of many women’s organizations, including the Black Women’s Round Table, which performs as a liaison to the White House on gender equality, social justice, voting rights and presidential appointments.
Jeff Gray – Co-Founder, Owner & CEO of SC Labs
Jeff Gray is co-founder, owner, and CEO of SC Labs, one of the first independent analytical laboratories for cannabis and hemp in the United States. Serving the cannabis community in Oregon since 2017 and California since 2010, SC Labs’ vision is to inform and evolve people’s understanding of and experience with cannabis, and cannabis therapeutics, using science and data by partnering with organizations that address diversity in STEM, progressive testing standards, compassionate relief for patients, and social equity in the cannabis industry. As one of the few African American owner-operators in the California cannabis industry, Gray has served as a mentor to countless entrepreneurs and professionals from marginalized communities who seek to enter the cannabis industry. He has also been an outspoken thought leader on issues of racial equity in ownership, employment and economic participation.
Faith Leach – Deputy Mayor for Equity, Health and Human Services, City of Baltimore
Faith Leach has spent more than a decade working to address key drivers of economic inequality experienced by vulnerable populations in cities across the country. She was recently appointed Deputy Mayor for Equity, Health and Human Services for Baltimore City, responsible for overseeing city agencies dealing primarily with quality of life issues such as recreation and parks, library services and the city’s Covid-19 public health response. In her previous role, she served as Chief of Staff for the JP Morgan Chase Foundation, where she oversaw a five-year, $2 billion global investment to create inclusive economic growth in vulnerable communities. She also helped to develop and deploy $200 million to address economic and public health problems resulting from the pandemic, as well as the development of JPMorgan’s $30 billion commitment to advance racial equity.
Carmen Perez – President & CEO, The Gathering for Justice
Carmen Perez is an award-winning, internationally-known civil and human rights leader and Chicana feminist. She is the co-founder of Justice League NYC and Justice League CA, two state-based task forces for advancing a juvenile and criminal justice reform agenda, where she spearheaded campaigns to Free Meek Mill and Take a Knee with Colin Kaepernick, among many others. She was one of the National Co-Chairs of the 2017 Women’s March on Washington, which drew over 5 million people from across the globe. In addition to being named one of Fortune’s Top 50 World Leaders, one of TIME’s 100 most influential people, a Glamour Woman of the Year and Forbes’ 100 Mujeres Mas Poderosas, Carmen has also been a featured speaker at Harvard University, Columbia University, and the University of California – Santa Cruz. She has been featured in numerous media outlets including Forbes, TIME, Newsweek, MSNBC, Univision, ELLE, Glamour, Bustle, Common Dreams and more.
Mary Pryor – Co-Founder, Cannaclusive
Mary Pryor is an expert in marketing, media, journalism, technology, wellness and entrepreneurship. Born in Detroit, MI, she focuses on helping people (and corporate entities) feel connected in the digital world, benefiting the social good of the general public, and creating safe spaces for African American minds in traditionally white spaces. She co-founded Cannaclusive, a company created to facilitate the fair representation of minority cannabis consumers in the cannabis industry, and Cannabis for Black Lives, a coalition of cannabis companies galvanizing the cannabis industry to support Black lives. She is also leading marketing efforts for TONIC/Tricolla Farms and advises a few brands such as Flor De Maria Chocolates, Dieux Skin, and OKO. Her vast experience has led to her being featured on global platforms such as NBC News, Refinery29, SELF, USA Today, Complex, Marie Claire, Essence, AdAge, Blavity, and Bustle.
Angela Rye – CEO, Impact Strategies & Political Commentator, CNN & NPR
Angela Rye is an award-winning host, social justice advocate, lawyer, commentator, and self-described empowermenteur, embodying what it means to be a “bringer of truth.” Named and raised accordingly, the attorney’s no holds barred commentary has resonated with demographics all over the world. Her thoughtful yet incisive commentary and real talk about social justice, politics, culture, and history sparks much-needed conversation about the state of America. She is the host of the weekly podcast “On One with Angela Rye” and a politics and culture commentator. Recognized for her honest, refreshing commentary and social justice advocacy by our nation’s most prominent civil rights organizations such as National Urban League, NAACP, and National Action Network, she has also been featured in publications including The New York Times, Vanity Fair, Essence, Washington Post, Glamour, Ebony, and The Undefeated.
About The Parent Company:
The Parent Company (TPCO Holding Corp.) (NEO: GRAM.U) (OTCQX: GRAMF) is California’s leading vertically integrated cannabis company combining best-in-class operations with leading voices in popular culture and social impact. The Parent Company brings together global icon and entrepreneur Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter, entertainment powerhouse ROC NATION, California’s leading direct-to-consumer platform CALIVA, and leading cannabis and hemp manufacturer, LEFT COAST VENTURES, to form a cannabis industry leader for the post-prohibition era. Chief Visionary Officer Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter, one of the most recognized and celebrated entrepreneurs of our time, guides The Parent Company’s brand strategy in partnership with Roc Nation, the world’s preeminent entertainment company with a roster of culture-making artists, athletes, and influencers. The brands we build together will pave a new path forward for a legacy rooted in equity, access, and justice.
This press release may contain forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities legislation which reflects The Parent Company’s current expectations regarding future events. The words “will,” “expects,” “intends” and similar expressions are often intended to identify forward looking information, although not all forward-looking information contains these identifying words.
Specific forward-looking information contained in this press release includes, but is not limited to, statements concerning The Parent Company’s newly appointed Social Equity Fund Advisory Committee as well as its anticipated future financial commitment to social equity initiatives. Forward-looking information is based on a number of assumptions and is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond The Parent Company’s control, which could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those that are disclosed in or implied by such forward looking information. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: changes in general economic, business and political conditions, changes in applicable laws, the U.S. and Canadian regulatory landscapes and enforcement related to cannabis, changes in public opinion and perception of the cannabis industry, reliance on the expertise and judgment of senior management, as well as the factors discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” in The Parent Company’s Annual Information Form dated March 25, 2021, which is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. The Parent Company undertakes no obligation to update such forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as expressly required by applicable law.
Caution Regarding Cannabis Operations in the United States
Investors should note that there are significant legal restrictions and regulations that govern the cannabis industry in the United States. Cannabis remains a Schedule I drug under the U.S. Controlled Substances Act, making it illegal under federal law in the United States to, among other things, cultivate, distribute or possess cannabis in the United States. Financial transactions involving proceeds generated by, or intended to promote, cannabis-related business activities in the United States may form the basis for prosecution under applicable U.S. federal money laundering legislation.
While the approach to enforcement of such laws by the federal government in the United States has trended toward non-enforcement against individuals and businesses that comply with medical or adult-use cannabis programs in states where such programs are legal, strict compliance with state laws with respect to cannabis will neither absolve The Parent Company of liability under U.S. federal law, nor will it provide a defense to any federal proceeding which may be brought against the Company. The enforcement of federal laws in the United States is a significant risk to the business of The Parent Company and any proceedings brought against the Company thereunder may adversely affect the Company’s operations and financial performance.