Anytime you take on the task of attempting to identify the most powerful, the richest, the most famous, the biggest, the best (you get the idea) or the most influential, you start with the standard-bearer and build from there. With that in mind, the editors of Cannabis Business Executive (CBE) began constructing the first annual CBE 100, 6 months ago.
So here we go, welcome to the first annual Cannabis Business Executive 100 (The CBE 100) which represents the 100 most influential people, including individuals from the business, political and regulatory arenas, that have driven the emerging Cannabis Industry to its current state the United States of America since marijauna was declared a schedule 1 drug at the advent of the War on Drugs back in the early seventies.
2014 has been a year of firsts for the industry with Colorado becoming the first state to legalize marijuana for adult use and Washington state following closely behind in July. Two other states, Alaska and Oregon, passed ballot initiatives to legally regulate adult use marijuana and the District of Columbia did the same. And, Florida fell just short of a super majority to become the first southern state to legalize medical marijauna this past election with nearly 58% of its voters supporting Amendment 2.
The CBE 100 is comprised of both private and public sector individuals that have had the greatest impact on the Cannabis Industry. This year’s CBE 100 is heavily weighted towards political and activist members since cannabis is still illegal under federal law. CBE Press LLC believes that this balance will shift as the legitimate Cannabis Industry fully takes hold nationwide over the next several years and federal prohibition is finally lifted.
This year’s list is heavily subjective, we fully expect that as the industry grows and prospers, the list will be much more quantitatively driven and comprised predominantly by the key business players that are following legitimate best practices and financial reporting while leading their companies to profitability in the years to come. Financial transparency and an opening up of federal banking laws will be an important component in establishing legitimacy for the cannabis industry and access to the capital markets.
There are three components to this years list:
- “The CBE 100” which represents the top 100 most influential people from
both the public and private sector that have led or obstructed the growing industry to this point in time.
- “The CBE Political 50” which is comprised of the top 50 most influential regulatory and public policy players.
- ” CBE’s Most Influential Women”, 20 of whom are represented on the 2014 CBE 100
Congratulations to our Commander-in-Chief, President Barack Obama, CBE’s Person of the Year, for setting in motion the path to ending prohibition. Without the Ogden memorandum in 2009 and the Cole memo issued in 2013, the Cannabis Industry would not be at the point where it is today. According to ArcView Market Research, the industry will have generated close to $2.6 billion in revenues in 2014 and they projected that it will grow to nearly $10 billion over the next 5 years.
CBE Press salutes all of the members of this years list (even those that have stood in the way of the inevitable) and looks forward to covering the industry in the years ahead. I look forward to your thoughts and comments!
President and Editor
CBE Press LLC
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