For Immediate Release

August 17, 2017
Washington D.C

The National Hemp Association, the nation’s leader in advocating for the return of the industrial hemp crop to the nation’s farmlands, hosted , under its new Chairmanship and Board of Directors, its first Annual General Meeting today and made a number of announcements to its membership and supporters.

“We have implemented some major initiatives in a very short timeframe to better represent our Membership and the Industry – issues that are most important to kick starting this multi-Billion, possibly, Trillion-dollar farming industry” said Geoff Whaling, who became NHA Chairman In June. “The announcements we made during the Annual General Meeting have been taken to ensure NHA’s leadership well into the future and the passage of HR3530 – the Industrial Hemp Farming Act”.

Most important in that process was the announcement that the Board of Directors has been reduced from 11 members to 5. This decision was taken to streamline decision making and responding to important industry issues. In addition, NHA welcomed two new members of the Board of Directors, both industry leaders, who will both be able to use their extensive backgrounds to assist expand NHA events and membership benefits and the science and regulatory issues that the industry will need, plus provide NHA with representation in two of the largest states advancing Industrial Hemp.

Marielle Weintraub
Marielle has a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience which can be of use when discussing the scientific advantages of the endocannabinoid system, she is truly passionate in advancing the use of CBD oil as an alternative to other medications, when appropriate. Her current position with Covance Food Solutions, one of the largest analytical chemistry and contract research organizations, may help to advance the needs of this industry and adds additional diversity to the board. Her successful campaign to allow Hemp/CBD oil testing at the Covance facilities has been a big game changer for some of the members of the NHA. Marielle is based in Texas, however her position with Covance Food Solutions has her covering the mountain plains, including Colorado.

Christine Ianuzzi
Christine Ianuzzi is a Managing Partner of H.A. Bruno Events, LLC. In January. H.A. Bruno Events, LLC, operates Leading Edge Expositions, LLC (LEE). Three trade events are produced each year by LEE: the Cannabis World Congress & Business Expositions held in New York, Los Angeles and Boston. The Cannabis World Congress & Business Expositions are business-to-business events for the legalized cannabis industry and are held 3 times per year in the largest media, financial and business markets.

Ianuzzi’s previous executive roles include serving as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Technology Officer for Robocast, Inc. Prior to that, Ianuzzi served as Vice President of Studio & Production Operations, and then as Vice President of Supply Chain Operations for HBO from August 2010 to June 2014. Prior to HBO, Ianuzzi served as Senior Vice President of Broadcasting Technology for ABC Radio Networks/Citadel Broadcasting from 2000 to 2010 where she led and implemented the technical and business goals of the Engineering and Operations divisions. She was a key executive during the transition of ABC Radio Networks to Citadel Broadcasting in restructuring and realigning the company in a changing industry.

Other major announcements include:

The establishment of new offices for the Association in the nation’s capital, making NHA the only industry organization to be located in the District of Columbia.

We have worked diligently to address the By-laws and corporate structure of NHA to comply with both State and Federal requirements, but most importantly to be more responsive to the membership.

We have hired a new full-time Executive Director. Erica McBride brings years of administration and management experience along with both the knowledge of industrial hemp and the building of a state hemp council into one of the premier groups in the nation.

The Board has undertaken a focus group approach to the creation and development of a new logo and brand for the Association – one that instantly speaks to Industrial hemp being a commodity crop. The logo has been quickly incorporated into NHA’s communications, website, newsletters, social media, marketing materials, collateral and letterhead.

We have undertaken a review of our corporate needs and have completed establishing an alliance with the Hemp Heals Foundation to be our not for profit 501c3 for those organizations and individuals that would also like to receive a tax-deductible receipt for their support. We too have aligned ourselves with the US Hemp Roundtable – to be our “Business Council”. Through our association with the Roundtable, we are planning an Industrial Hemp Fly in on September 13th to work on Capitol Hill to advance and gain co-sponsorships of HR 3530 – the Industrial Hemp Farming Act – which we have been able to help draft and that was introduce by Representative Comer three weeks ago.

We have already undertaken meetings with USDA Secretary Perdue’s Senior Staff – and through this meeting have now affirmed our role as the national leading Association representing hemp. This meeting has already benefitted our industry as we have helped see 9 grants to research hemp approved by NIFA. We too have a commitment from USDA to quickly respond to policy issues and inquiries about Industrial hemp.

“Although we have accomplished much in a short timeframe, we still have much to do to rebuild the confidence of our membership and to gain co-sponsors for both the House and Senate Legislation”, said Whaling. “I am sure that these actions demonstrate NHA’s determined commitment to live up to both our own and our membership’s expectations!”


Erica McBride
Executive Director

100 M Street SE, Suite 500, Washington D.C. 20003

This article originally posted …: National Hemp Association