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Virtual: Highly Educated: What’s needed to be on the forefront of corporate cannabis education?

June 22 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

This virtual event will offer students, alumni, and the public the opportunity to explore the growing needs of cannabis education within higher educational institutions. A diverse panel of local industry leaders will offer valuable insight through a candid conversation focused on emerging employment opportunities within the cannabis industry. DePaul University is proud to work in collaboration with Illinois Women in Cannabis to offer university-wide cannabis programs to students pursuing a degree in business, criminal justice, and health science.


 Carrie Armour: Criminal Justice, Business, Health Science

Carrie Armour is a director of Illinois Women in Cannabis and currently chairs IWC’s Education and Advocacy Committee. Carrie has more than fifteen years of experience representing physician organizations and companies as a government affairs attorney and advocacy consultant. Her policy work focuses on expanding cannabis education and training. She holds a B.A. from Miami University and a Juris Doctor from Loyola University School of Law. She is also a member of the Illinois Cannabis Bar Association. Carrie is excited to work with the IWC and DePaul to expand educational and professional opportunities for women in the cannabis industry and is committed to the growth and success of both the medical and adult-use markets.

Andrea Baillo: Health Science & Research

Obtaining a Ph.D. in molecular cell biology and cancer biology, Andrea Baillo launched her career pursuing cancer research. As the 2007 financial crash impacted her ability to receive grant funding, Andrea applied her manufacturing, production, and quality management skills to enter the emerging cannabis industry. Serving as the Director of Research & Development and Quality Control for Green Thumb Industries, Andrea is at the forefront of product development and quality management.

Samantha Kramer: Legal, Government Affairs

DePaul Alumni, Samantha Kramer, entered the cannabis industry as an advocate working with the ACLU to successfully petition students’ right to a cannabis policy organization at undergraduate universities. Recognizing the need for legal advocates within the industry, Samantha obtained a J.D. while founding the first-ever Cannabis Law Society at Chicago-Kent College of Law. After joining Green Thumb Industries as a Law Clerk, Samantha now acts as the Government Affairs Associate, working on their LEAP team to offer programs that provide application assistance to Illinois social equity applicants.

Jason Nelson: Cultivation, Production, Social Equity

As the Senior Vice President of Production for Cresco Labs, Jason Nelson is responsible for finding the sweet spot where CPG-level production and Cresco quality intersects. After obtaining a Master’s in Horticulture from Kansas State University, Jason entered the Colorado cannabis industry as the General Manager of cultivation for the vertically integrated cannabis company, The Green Solution. In February of 2016, Jason accepted his current position with Cresco Labs, entering the Illinois cannabis industry. In the years since Jason worked hard to blend academics with hands-on cannabis experience.  Developing a production method that is sustainable while ensuring consistent, high-quality products on a mass scale.

Moderator: Amor Montes de Oca: Business, Entrepreneurship, Diversity & Inclusion

DePaul Alumni, Amor Montes de Oca, is the first Executive Director for Illinois Women in Cannabis. Formerly, she served as Director of Strategic Initiatives for 2112, Chicago’s first incubator for creative entrepreneurs, where she focused on creating meaningful programming, raising capital, and developing advanced professional development initiatives for members. Amor received her B.A. from DePaul University. Using her experience helping start-ups scale, Amor sees vast opportunities to create more equitable economic opportunities, drive innovation, and encourage entrepreneurial initiatives within Illinois’ burgeoning regulated cannabis industry.