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Three Times a Charm: Northwest Patient Resource Center

Activist and business owner John Davis has been around the cannabis world most of his life, in 1993 when he got his hands on The Report of the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse: Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding or The Shafer Commission Report which published the findings of Richard Nixon’s blue ribbon panel on marijuana that preceded the War on Drugs his path was cemented. This defining moment set John on a course that eventually brought him directly into the Cannabis business as the owner of Northwest Patient Resource Center (NWPRC), a for profit medical marijuana retailer with two locations in Seattle, WA.

John Davis

John got serious about entering the business in 2008 when it was clear to him that Barack Obama was not only the democratic frontrunner but also the 2010 presidential election front runner. After spending the bulk of his career in construction project management John hit his proverbial fork in the road and had to decide whether he would continue trying to have his professional and activist lives coexist or pursue his activism as a career in cannabis….and he chose the latter! It took several tries to get his cannabis career moving, but, as they say, 3 times a charm…and that certainly the case for John.

His first venture, he was asked to run Compassion in Action, one of two dispensaries in business in WA state at the time (John describes this as the Berkley Patient’s Group of Seattle)by Doug Hiatt, a well known lawyer who spent the majority of his career serving as a public defender. Upon his arrival, John immediately set in motion a plan to put formal business best practices in place especially to guard against employee theft, only to be stymied by the staff and ownership whose previous best practices included destroying any records that could be used to prosecute for breaking federal laws.

His second attempt was the result of starting a venture with a partner, the two guys never saw eye to eye and John was eventually bought out.

His third attempt NWPRC, was launched in 2011 and as the owner of this for profit medical retailer, John was finally in a position to run a business that was above board and transparent in all respects. He picked up a location in West Seattle and opened a second storefront in downtown Seattle in 2012. His clearly defined goal when he launched was to still be operating in 5 years. His other goal was to set-up a business that wouldn’t require him to run day to day operations (he did want to set and guide the company’s strategy) and would allow him to devote a significant amount of time to his number one passion, seeing prohibition end.

Northwest Patient Resource Center. Photo by Daniel Berman/

NWPRC is a professionally run, fully computerized venture and they are constantly working to create solutions for gray areas. They take compliance seriously and to heart and he is heavily involved with the state regulatory system and has worked on co-authoring many pieces of the regulatory slate. The management team pursues an open door policy and is all about growing with the industry and building a respected brand. Within that context, they carry an extensive product mix of flowers, concentrates, edibles, oils, tinctures, topicals and consumption gear.

Northwest Patient Resource Center. Photo by Daniel Berman/

John does foresee a future for the NWPRC brand to expand into other states either through partnering with local licensees(he has a partner in Illinois that won 3 licenses) and possibly creating a franchise model. He likes the possibility of running a vertically integrated operation (John has run grows as well) as long as he finds partners that have similar aspirations and business interests. He has partner relationships in New York, Florida and sits on the Board of the Nevada Cannabis Industry Association..

Another opportunity for NWPRC is based on their extensive knowledge of the regulatory environment, look for them to become more involved in monetizing the Intellectual Property that they have developed meeting compliance issues in Washington.

John has found a balance in his life incorporating his activism and his business interests. He is a board member and Vice Chair of the National Cannabis Industry Association, serves as executive director of a group called the Coalition for Cannabis Standards and Ethics, which preaches self-regulation and is Chairman of the Seattle Hempfest. He has also been involved with former Microsoft manager Jamen Shively and former Mexican President Vincente Fox who founded a pot company called Diego Pellicer which they have touted as the first national cannabis brand. (Vicente is a friend. He has no ownership or position in Deigo. Now trading as DPWW)

With one year to go in meeting his goal of being in business after 5 years, John and his team look like they will be moving onto phase two in coming years…we can’t wait to see where it takes NWPRC.

Company Name: Northwest Patient Resource Center (NWPRC)

Year Founded: April, 2011

Ownership Structure: Private Company Incorporated in WA

Co-Founders &Management Team: John Davis, CEO, Daniela Bernhardt, President and Jake Dimmock, Partner

Headquarters: Seattle, WA


Industry Segment/Category: Medical Retailer

Current Markets/States Served: WA

Current Number of employees: 13-15

2014 Revenues: $2 Million

Current Retail Product Mix: Extensive mix of Flowers, Concentrates, Edibles, Oils, Tinctures, Topicals Consumption Gear

Expansion Plans: Nationally

Financing strategy: To date from operations and seed capital

Rob MeagherRob Meagher

Rob Meagher

Rob Meagher, CBE’s Founder, President and Editor-in-Chief is a 30 year veteran of the media world. His career has spanned from stints representing the Washington Post, USA Weekend, Reader’s Digest, Financial World & Corporate Finance to the technology world where he worked at International Data Group and Ziff Davis where he was part of the launch team for The Web Magazine, Yahoo Internet Life, Smart Business and Expedia Travels before starting his own marketing and Publisher’s Representative Firm. He also ran all print and online media sales and marketing for the Society for Human Resource Management before partnering with Forbes and then Fortune to create Special Sections covering a variety of topics. Rob, who started CBE Press in 2014, can be contacted at [email protected]

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