It is an honor and privilege to be nominated as Board Member of INCBA during such a pivotal moment in the cannabis industry. The events that are unfolding in front of us – in real time – are disrupting national and international agricultural, commodities, financial and pharmaceutical markets. The strides we have made together as a community supporting this industry are commendable and historical.
The mission of the National Cannabis Bar Association, now appropriately the International Cannabis Bar Association, has always been to encourage and provide support and professionalism to its members, who continue to set the bar for advocacy and legitimacy in an industry that only just emerged from the shadows.
My legal background in business began years before law school where I worked as a commercial litigation paralegal for John Morgan’s firm Morgan & Morgan. (John Morgan, as we all know, is a trailblazer and a tireless advocate of cannabis law reform.) I continued my focus on commercial transactions and international law in law school, where I served as staff editor on law review. Upon graduation I served as litigation and corporate counsel to an exclusive book of high net worth and corporate clients at one of Central Florida’s most recognized law firms. As counsel to national and international clients, I became familiar with diverse and complex facets of law and facilitated nuanced commercial transactions. My focus on risk mitigation led me to my current firm Snyderburn, Rishoi & Swann, which I now call home. The bulk of my work is focused on securities compliance, FINRA arbitration, structuring transactions, offering memorandums and continue to litigate complex business transactions. I have represented clients in cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, state and federal courts, FINRA arbitration and defended against SEC enforcement actions. Research and writing – while tedious – are my most savored aspects of the law.
I entered the Oregon cannabis industry in 2015, and by 2016 had purchased a 50-acre farm in Southern Oregon and developed the property to what is now one of the largest feminized hemp seed production facilities in the country. I act as owner and operator to several cannabis ventures and continue to expand my portfolio in that regard. My current legal practice allows me to capitalize, advise, support and build cannabis corporations across the country. These clients and affiliates are facing tremendous investment dollars from private equity. As such, my client base has demanded legitimacy and transparency from the industry to investors and stakeholders. I empathize with both the attorneys that represent these clients and the clients’ need for strong legal representation.
I truly believe ICNBA supports such a network of clients and attorneys in the industry. Similar to data analytics, the more information, the better. And as our inboxes continue to flood with emails from the CANBAR Forum, I take comfort that the constant sharing of information between members from across the globe is verifying and legitimizing the legal approaches that support this rapidly evolving industry. I intend to loyally serve and support ICNBA during this amazing industry growth as the organization has impacted me both personally and professionally.
Vanessa Louise Braeley, Esq.