Andrew DeAngelo is a unique leader who builds organizations from the ground up. He is the co-founder of Harborside Inc., a publicly traded cannabis company. He is a co-founder of the non-profit, Last Prisoner Project. And he is the co-founder of the California Cannabis Industry Association trade organization. In addition, Andrew is one of the few people to have owned and operated cannabis companies in the legacy, medical, and adult-use markets on both coasts of the United States. As an activist for the last 35 years, Andrew helped legalize medical and adult-use cannabis in California and Washington, D.C. He is the very definition of a trailblazer and someone known as a pioneer in the industry.
During his almost 13-year tenure at Harborside, Andrew led the design and development of gold-standard cannabis retail by innovating many “firsts” for the industry. These include: introducing CBD medicines to heal severely epileptic children as documented in Discovery Channel’s Weed Wars, implementing the first lab-testing program in the history of cannabis dispensing, creating child-resistant packaging for edibles, standardizing inventory tracking, initiating senior outreach, and successfully preventing the federal government from seizing Harborside in forfeiture actions against the company in 2012. Today Harborside is one of the largest vertically integrated cannabis companies in California.
After his exit from Harborside, Andrew co-founded Last Prisoner Project (LPP) with his brother, Steve, in 2019. LPP’s mission is to free and re-integrate all cannabis prisoners into mainstream society. Since its inception in 2019, LPP has successfully freed and re-entered the formerly incarcerated into society and has provided resources for education, housing, and professional development to their constituents. LPP is one of the more successful social justice nonprofits doing this work.
Andrew is also a founding board of directors member of the premier cannabis industry trade association, California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA). He served from 2013 to 2020, building the organization from zero to 500 member companies. CCIA continues to represent the industry in California as it works to improve the legal and regulatory framework for cannabis trade throughout the state.
Andrew also starred in the first reality TV series about the legal medical cannabis industry, Weed Wars, which aired on the Discovery Channel in 2011-12. He also appeared on The O’Reilly Factor, MSNBC; and dozens of podcasts like, “Stay Human with Michael Franti” and “Days Between with Otiel Burbridge.”
As a speaker, Andrew has appeared at the MJ Business Daily Conference in Las Vegas; ICBC and NCIA conferences in Chicago, Boston, and San Jose; the Emerald Conference in San Diego; the Emerald Cup in Sonoma; and CannabiSalud in Mexico City. Courses on cannabis business training led by Andrew are available online through Green Flower Media.
Andrew is a contributor to Forbes, where he writes about cannabis business and culture; he has also written for Playboy, MJBiz Daily, Green Entrepreneur, Cannabis Now, Honeysuckle Magazine, and many others. Andrew has a B.F.A. in Communications from Chapman University, where he graduated with honors. In addition, Andrew earned his M.F.A. in Acting from the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco.
Today, Andrew works as a consultant and strategic advisor to the global cannabis industry. He works with clients to build their businesses from seed to sale.