As a father, an activist, a grower and a consultant, Jay Czarkowski has made it his mission to help grow the Cannabis Industry. Through several triumphs and hardships he and his wife Diane, of Canna Advisors, have paved the way for many entrepreneurs. Their story is one of success, and perseverance. Jay strives everyday to share the truth of his experience in order to build a better future for the Cannabis Industry.
Could you start by telling your story?
Diane and I started our dispensary Boulder Kind Care in 2009 before there was any licensing, before there was any regulation. We built a business and then stayed way out in front of regulation and licensing. I think it’s significant that we secured the City of Boulder License #1. Then we secured the State of Colorado License #7.
Jay opens his desk drawer and pulls out his old employee badge. It was one of the first ever issued in the state.
We had a great business. Then three years into it, one of our business partners, a good guy, made a seemingly harmless mistake and pissed of the city. We were denied new licensing for grows that we built. We’ve been through a lot and there are a lot of newcomers in this industry now that will never have to go through any of this bullshit because of what we have done. We have always hung in there, kept our head up and fought through any hard times or challenges, and came out on top.
What made you switch to consulting?
We were introduced to a couple guys in Connecticut. They reached out to us and asked if we could help them compete for a competitive license in Connecticut. The state was only going to issue four licenses to cultivate cannabis, to do extractions, and manufacture products. So after working with these guys after a year, we won. One of four.
Then within ten days of submitting those applications was the deadline for submitting the licenses right next door in Massachusetts where we submitted five applications. In the same week that we were awarded our license in Connecticut, we ended up winning three in Massachusetts. That’s 20-25% of the total licenses between the two states. It is historic.
Even though Massachusetts revoked nine licenses, our groups kept all of theirs and I believe that’s what elevated us to legendary status. We gained a lot of notoriety at that point. A former US Congressman had his license revoked, but we kept ours. Since then we have continued to work hard for people.