OC NORML Board 2020/21

 

Executive Director
 

Kandice Hawes founded Orange County NORML in 2003 after losing her financial aid due to a possession charge. In the seventeen years since then OC NORML has become one of the most accomplished chapters in the NORML organization earning the Outstanding Chapter of the Year Award at the 2012 NORML Convention. She currently serves as the chapters Executive Director and holds which holds three monthly meetings.

 

OC NORML has also been instrumental in organizing the Medical Cannabis Conference for Seniors in Laguna Woods and the Know Your Rights Expo at the Anaheim Convention Center. 

 

Kandice Hawes was named High Times Freedom Fighter of the month in November 2012. She was also named one of “Orange County’s 100 Most Influential People” by the Orange County Register in 2014 and named one of the “100 Most Interesting People in Orange County” by the OC Weekly in 2015.

 

Kandice Hawes recently served as the Principal Officer of the Committee to Support Medical Marijuana Ballot Initiative Political Action Committee. The PAC qualified a voter initiative to replace the ban on medical marijuana collectives in Santa Ana and received 54% of the vote in November 2014.​

Kandice currently works as the Community Outreach Manager for Glasshouse Group in Orange County educating the community on the benefits of cannabis and building relationships with community organizations. 

She lives with her two young boys and husband in South Orange County and enjoys Scuba Diving and traveling.

Deputy Director 

Jakki Hernandez entered into the cannabis industry in 2004. She has worked in practically every facet of the industry, from Cannabis Journalism to a Dispensary Store Manager and every position in between. Her personal connection to cannabis as medicine is what connected her become an advocate for the patients and plant itself. The doctors once told her that a morphine pump would be her only relief from pain. 16 years later, cannabis has fully removed her need for any other pharmaceutical drug. Jakki knew she needed to spread the word about cannabis being a medicine and the hypocrisy of our government's scheduling of the substance. 

 

Around 2007 this path led her to find Kandice Hawes and Orange County Norml a non profit that perfectly matched up with her passion and desire to change the laws in our state and country. Throughout her time as an activist, she has attended many protests, lobby days and council meetings.  She feels strongly that the stigma needs to change and never hides that she is a cannabis consumer who is also a responsible, functional member of society.  Jakki is a Cannabis Consultant and currently holds the position of Deputy Director of Orange County  Norml. Oc Norml aims to spread awareness and education surrounding cannabis to communities and residents in need.  We help everyone in the industry, focusing special attention on our senior, veteran and patient communities.  

 

Advocacy has always been at the forefront of our mission, this is why we created the Orange County Commercial Cannabis Licensing Task Force which will open up licensing opportunities in every city.  Jakki hopes to continue in the industry as a Cannabis Consultant for both the business as well as patient side of the community and is excited to see how big this industry will grow.

Public Relations Officer

Keiko Beatie has been a practitioner of Ayurveda, Chinese and Holistic Medicine since the 1970’s. Her specialty in Bach Flower and Homeopathic has continued with whole plant cannabis medicine. She speaks at many mainstream CBD and cannabis conference across the country on subjects including Senior Education, CBD & THC, Pain Management, Edibles, Topicals, Patient Care, Minorities in Cannabis, How to Create a Business in Cannabis, just to name a few.

Keiko’s outreach has brought her to the County Fairs in California cooking with hemp and CBD, to enable outreach to the mainstream the benefits of hemp and cannabis.

 

She is a Board Member of NORML OC, Cannabis Chamber of Commerce Orange County, Director of Education for Coral Cove Wellness Resort in Jamaica, Head Judge of Edibles for The Emerald Cup, Contributing Writer for
Marijuana.com for Weedmaps, created the Cannabis International Tourism Association, and has a
focus on Senior Education with natural plant base medicine with the program “Cannabis and CBD For
You and Me”.​


In the past Keiko created the first cannabis-based TV network on Roku TV The US Weed Chanel, former
Leadership Women Grow, Instructor at CCI Cannabis Career Institute, and has Co-Host of Hemp Radio.

 

Keiko's mission statement is “Acceptance and legalization through education and outreach” for positive
CBD and Cannabis patient care.

Director of Events

Alison Puleo, formerly known as Alison Hajagos, became a cannabis advocate as a teenager when her mother was diagnosed with stage four melanoma cancer. She studied the plant throughout her college years while working towards a degree in biochemistry. She became a holistic nutritionist and used cannabis in helping her mother and other cancer patients with their treatment. She is an avid gardener and began growing different cannabis strains for her family and also making extracts.

 

Alison formally entered the medical cannabis industry as a sales director for a Southern California cultivator and distributor. Working with cultivation, marketing, business development, and education allowed her to gain much experience and shed light on how to improve the industry. Alison has had the ability to see the cannabis market from almost every side which has given her a platform to speak up for the reform of cannabis laws. She has a strong passion for helping new users, seniors, and medical patients. Her background in science has helped her bring new, innovative cannabis products to the California market to help users safely consume. She has also been able to attend many cannabis business-to-business events and community events, which she found a passion for hosting and attending. 

Alison joined OC NORML in early 2019 when she saw an opportunity to be involved with other knowledgeable cannabis advocates and use her experience to become an activist. She is always striving to grow as an individual and lift others up which is why she works hard to better the cannabis industry. She believes that we always have room for improvement and that the cannabis community is made up of so many positive people who will fight to make the industry grow! Alison now serves as the director of events where she helps coordinate and plan events to bring our nonprofit exposure in the community and business side of the the market. She also plans fun, educational trips for our chapter where members and nonmembers are able to come together and learn and share their cannabis journeys. She looks forward to bringing our community together and planning many more events! 

Director of Merchandise

Robert Eitner was born in Whittier has been a Freedom Fighter and all around activist for more then 30 Years with groups like NORML, the Freedom Fighters, Oregon Peaceworks, Food Not Bombs, Earth First, Greenpeace, Rainbow Family of living, and the Light Coalition.

 

Robert first Hemp Rally was over 28 years ago at the Ann Arbor Hash bash. He now serves at the Merchandise Director for OC NORML where he make purchasing decisions for the chapter and staffs our many event booths. 

Robert currently works for one of the largest cannabis companies in Southern California at one of their Orange County manufacturing facilities.

Secretary

 

Diane McConahay has been a personal trainer since 1997 and a personal chef since 2010.  She has an extensive background with a B.S. in Kinesiology, several personal training certificates, YogaFit, Madd Dogg Spinning, TRX, & Yoga Tune Up certifications, as well as training in balance and stability. She also has worked with many physical therapists and is able to modify any exercise to accommodate for injuries.

 

Diane’s passion as a chef, teaching cooking classes and educating her clients about the medicinal benefits of foods shows as she brings tasty foods to your home. She is also a great believer and advocate of cannabis.  She has worked with several different companies in the cannabis space, assisting with education and supporting with their needs to get this plant out in the market. 

 

Diane is a recent cancer survivor who used cannabis as part of her healing. She is now cancer free and happily helping others learn about the vast benefits of and methods to use cannabis. Diane is an enthusiastic podcast host, bringing information about cannabis, health, and wellness on air to help others learn and have more of an understanding of the plant. She truly believes in the power of holistic healing through exercise, proper nutrition & supplementation, cannabis, breathing exercises, meditation and controlling that monkey mind we all experience.  Diane is happy to chat with anyone about how to make small or large shifts for a healthier lifestyle!!

In Memory of Jairo "Al" Moreno
OC NORML Deputy Director 2005-2020

Medical Officer

 

Robert Brown is proud to be a nurse and the first medical officer with OC NORML. He has been an activist for more than 30 years and nurse for 28 years. Early years as a nurse made being vocal about cannabis very tricky. But now as times have changed he is able to be more vocal about his role in educating the public on cannabis.

 

Robert wrote his senior report on marijuana in 1987 and has spent most of his life researching and collecting data on cannabis. He is an avid cannabis reader and has read most of the 25 books in his cannabis library and loves collecting signed copies by industry experts. Roberts loves archiving cannabis in the film industry and his cannabis movie collection numbers more than 55 and is always growing.

 

When Robert joined NORML in 2010 he felt it was a very liberating and a real “out of the closet” moment for him. He feels he was fortunate to find OC NORML when he volunteered at the first medical conference in Orange County back in 2011. He knew after the first meeting that OC NORML is a great group of folks and people he needed to be working with.

 

Robert comes from a family of many vocal cannabis activists. At one time he had three generations coming to the OC NORML meetings and events. His wife is also a nurse and while she does not partake in the use of THC she has found CBD topical quite effective for her. She is also well educated and versed in the many uses of cannabis. He currently lives in Orange County and has three children and a grandson coming soon.

 

In 1994 I attended my 1st Hemp Rally in San Francisco, I saw people on those stages that had been long time heroes. Through OC NORML I have now met many of those people, ate, smoked and had some of the greatest times in my life with those heroes. Events with this group are indescribable and always an excellent time. Educating people at the beaches up and down the coast, tables at Cannabis Cups and every High times event in the surrounding counties. Filling up court rooms for a brother in need or a college auditorium for powerful education events. We have respect in the medical community and doctors come speak at our events, this group is amazing.

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