Our attorneys have more than three decades of combined experience representing clients in the marijuana industry and working on marijuana policy reform. They do not just advise clients on the law; they help to shape the laws and regulations themselves. Keep reading for a more detailed introduction to the members of our team.
Brian VicenteBrian Vicente, Esq., is a partner and founding member of Vicente Sederberg LLC. He served as the co-director of the Amendment 64 campaign and was one of the primary authors of this historic measure, which resulted in Colorado becoming the first state in the nation – and the first geographic area in the world – to make the possession, use, and regulated distribution of marijuana legal for adults. Vicente also serves as executive director of Sensible Colorado, the state's leading non-profit working for medical marijuana patients and providers. He was given the Gideon award for his free speech advocacy during the 2008 Democratic National Convention. In 2010, Vicente was elected the first-ever chair of the National Cannabis Industry Association, the only trade association in the U.S. that works to advance the interests of marijuana-related businesses on the national level. Brian was the chair of the Committee for Responsible Regulation, which coordinated the successful 2013 campaign to implement statewide excise and sales taxes on the sale of adult-use marijuana in Colorado and was awarded the Justice Gerald Le Dain Award for Achievement in the Field of Law that same year. Brian has conducted over 1000 interviews in local, state and national press regarding marijuana policy, and in 2014 The Guardian (UK) dubbed him "the industry's de facto spokesman." Vicente's expertise in marijuana policy is highly sought after, and has led to him serving as a formal advisor to local, state, and federal governments—most recently he assisted with Uruguay becoming the first country in the world to fully-regulate the adult marijuana market. Brian serves on the board of directors for a number of state and national non-profit organizations including the SAFER Voter Education Fund and the Harm Reduction Action Center. Vicente graduated from the University of Denver Law School on a full merit scholarship where he clerked for outspoken social critic, Senior Federal Judge John L. Kane.
Christian SederbergChristian Sederberg, Esq.,is a partner and founding member of Vicente Sederberg LLC. After graduating from the University of Colorado School of Law, Christian focused his practice on representing businesses with a primary focus on real estate, private equity, commercial, and corporate transactions. Since the inception of Colorado's state regulated medical marijuana program, Christian and the firm have provided a wide range of real estate, transactional and regulatory assistance to the marijuana community. Christian was also an integral part of Colorado's Amendment 64 campaign, acting as core volunteer for the campaign, representing the campaign on Governor Hickenlooper's Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force, and leading the campaign's legislative implementation team in the Colorado legislature by coordinating the implementation of the Colorado legislative and regulatory structure related to adult-use marijuana. Christian sat on the executive committee of the Committee for Responsible Regulation, which coordinated the campaign to establish statewide excise and sales taxes on the sale of adult-use marijuana in Colorado.
Adam FineAdam D. Fine, Esq., joined Vicente Sederberg LLC in 2013. As managing partner of the Massachusetts office, Adam represents the firm's growing base of Massachusetts medical marijuana clients, with a particular emphasis on licensing, corporate, and regulatory matters. Adam has chaired multiple CLE's relating to marijuana law, and has testified before numerous municipal and regulatory bodies regarding marijuana policy and compliance. Adam also served as a consultant to Massachusetts Special Senate Committee on Marijuana and on was on the drafting committee for Question 4 which legalized marijuana in Massachusetts. Adam is frequently quoted in the Boston Globe and other local publications on the topic of marijuana legislation and policy, and has emerged as a leading voice in the field. Before joining Vicente Sederberg, Adam spent a number of years as an associate attorney at a downtown Boston law firm where his practice focused on complex civil and criminal litigation. He is licensed to practice in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania and admitted in New Jersey. Before entering private practice, Adam was a trial attorney for the Defender Association of Philadelphia where he litigated over 200 criminal trials. Adam received his B.A. from the University of Rochester, and his J.D. cum laude from the American University Law School in 2004. He resides with his wife and three children in the South Shore of Massachusetts.
Joshua KappelJoshua Kappel, Esq., partner at Vicente Sederberg LLC, graduated in the top 10 percent of his class at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in May 2010. While in law school, Josh received both the Patton Boggs Public Policy Fellowship and the Public Interest Law Clerkship to work for Sensible Colorado. Josh also interned with the National ACLU's Drug Law Reform Project in Santa Cruz and the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar. At Vicente Sederberg, Josh routinely provides advice to patients, caregivers, and businesses about medical marijuana, licensing, regulatory compliance, general business and transactional law, and the intersection of state and federal law. In addition to his work with Vicente Sederberg, Josh is currently the Associate Director of Sensible Colorado, advocating for medical marijuana patient rights. He is also a founding member of the Council for Responsible Cannabis Regulation (CRCR), and the National Cannabis Bar Association (NCBA). Josh has testified at numerous public hearings on issues related to medical marijuana, sat on many panels at various conferences, and routinely writes articles about a myriad of medical marijuana issues. Josh's work has been highlighted in the Denver Post, Colorado Springs Gazette, Westword, Kush Magazine, West Coast Leaf, and Colorado Springs Independent.
Valerio RomanoValerio Romano, Esq. is a partner at Vicente Sederberg LLC. After graduating from the University of San Francisco School of Law, Valerio worked with cannabis pioneers at Pier 5 law offices in San Francisco to defend against the government’s overreach into the marijuana industry. Since 2012, with VGR Law Firm, PC, and now Vicente Sederberg LLC, Valerio has worked to site cannabis businesses in Massachusetts and across the country. Currently representing numerous cannabis business licensees and hopeful licensees from the Berkshires to Cape Cod, Valerio’s practice is focused on all aspects of land-use and municipal law. He works with clients through the application and licensing process, helping to site and secure real estate and maintain ongoing regulatory compliance. He also works regularly with mayors, city councilors, selectmen, planners, police chiefs, and state officials to resolve issues cannabis businesses face with host communities. A staunch advocate for his clients and the cannabis industry, Valerio is a co-drafter of the Question 4 ballot initiative, which passed by a significant margin in 2016, opening the doors for the new legal cannabis industry in the Commonwealth.
Charlie AlovisettiCharlie Alovisetti is a senior associate at Vicente Sederberg LLC and is a co-chair of the Corporate Department. Prior to joining Vicente Sederberg, Charlie worked as an associate in the New York offices of Latham & Watkins and Goodwin where his practice focused on representing private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies, as well as public companies, in a range of corporate transactions, including mergers, stock and asset acquisitions and divestitures, growth equity investments, venture capital investments, and debt financings. In addition, Charlie has experience counseling portfolio and emerging growth companies with respect to general corporate and commercial matters and all aspects of compensation arrangements, including executive employment and consulting agreements, stock option plans, restricted stock plans, bonus plans, and other management incentive arrangements. Charlie has experience in both U.S. and cross-border transactions, and has advised clients across a range of industries including cannabis, technology, manufacturing, software, digital media, energy and clean tech, healthcare, and biotech. He holds a Bachelor of Arts, with honors, from McGill University and a law degree from Columbia Law School, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar. Charlie is admitted to practice in both Colorado and New York.
Alicia AshcraftAlicia Ashcraft, Esq., is of counsel to Vicente Sederberg LLC and represents the firm's growing base of Nevada medical marijuana clients, with a particular emphasis on regulatory and compliance matters. Alicia is the managing partner at the law firm of Ashcraft & Barr LLP, and has earned a reputation as one of the top regulatory compliance and licensure attorneys in Southern Nevada. Alicia graduated cum laude from the Seattle University School of Law. Alicia represents clients before agencies as diverse as the Nevada Athletic Commission, Nevada Transportation Authority, Nevada Gaming Commission, the Nevada Gaming Control Board, Clark County and the City of Las Vegas.
Sahar AyinehsazianSahar began her legal career with a mid-sized law firm in Century City, where she specialized in intellectual property and complex business litigation. In 2016, she joined PayQwick, a cannabis industry payment processing startup, where she developed an understanding of credit card flows, banking, and cannabis compliance. As director of regulatory and governmental relations, Sahar established several regulatory relationships, published numerous articles on cannabis banking, and worked with a variety of state and federal agencies on regulations to facilitate cannabis banking. She graduated from Loyola Law School, and she is a member of the State Bar of California.
Courtney BarnesCourtney Barnes, Esq., is an associate attorney at Vicente Sederberg LLC's Denver Office. Ms. Barnes graduated with her Juris Doctor from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in May 2017, and is licensed to practice law in Colorado. Ms. Barnes joined Vicente Sederberg as a law clerk in June 2015, and has assisted with licensing applications in Colorado, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and California. She previously interned with the National Cannabis Industry Association and has also worked for the Trichome Institute, a cannabis education company. While in law school, she served as a Board Member for DU’s Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter. Ms. Barnes graduated summa cum laude from the University of South Florida where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications with a concentration in Journalism.
Jeffrey BarrJeffrey Barr, Esq., is of counsel to Vicente Sederberg LLC and represents the firm's growing base of Nevada medical marijuana clients, with a particular emphasis on regulatory and compliance matters. Jeff is a partner at the law firm of Ashcraft & Barr LLP, concentrating his practice on litigation, government affairs and business dispute resolution. Jeff served as the city attorney for the City of North Las Vegas from 2006-2011, offering innovative legal strategies to assist Nevada's third largest municipality in staving off imminent insolvency. Jeff graduated magna cum laude from the Seattle University School of Law and is a member of the bar in Washington, Nevada, U.S. District Court District of Nevada, the U.S. Tax Court, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Adam BergeronAdam focuses his practice on all aspects of corporate transactions including entity formations, corporate restructuring, equity and debt financing, stock and asset acquisitions, and general contracts required in day to day business operations. He also practices in the area of commercial real estate and leasing, always with an eye towards regulatory issues specific to the cannabis industry. Prior to joining VS, Adam served as general counsel for a nationwide franchise, as a corporate and real estate attorney at a boutique law firm focused on the entrepreneurial sector, and as an assistant attorney general. He received his law degree from the University of Colorado Law School, and he is a member of the Colorado Bar Association.
Corey CoxCorey Cox, Esq., is an associate in Vicente Sederberg LLC’s Denver office. Corey’s primary focus is on regulatory compliance and rules education. Prior to joining VS as a law clerk in February 2016, Corey worked in the Office of Compliance Services for the University of Colorado Athletics Department. Corey is a Colorado native and two time graduate of the University of Colorado earning a Bachelor’s in Political Science and International Studies as well as his Juris Doctorate. While in law school, Corey completed a certificate program in health care law and policy and served as a student attorney for both the Colorado Health Equity Project and the Getches-Green Natural Resources and Environmental Law Clinic.
Steve FoxSteve Fox, Esq., of counsel with Vicente Sederberg LLC, is also the director of VS Strategies, a government relations and strategic communications sister company of Vicente Sederberg. He is one of the leading figures in the movement to create a legal, regulated marijuana market in the United States. He is a co-founder of the National Cannabis Industry Association, which represents more than 1,200 state-legal businesses, and serves as a strategic advisor to the organization. While at the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) from 2002-2005 and 2009-2013, Steve lobbied Congress and guided numerous ballot initiative campaigns, including the Amendment 64 campaign in Colorado. He also guided a lobbying team through the Amendment 64 implementation process. In 2005, Steve conceptualized and co-founded Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER) in Colorado for the express purpose of educating the public about the fact that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol. The goal, eventually realized, was to change the mindset of voters in order to make marijuana legal through a ballot initiative. He is the co-author of Marijuana is Safer: So why are we driving people to drink? (Chelsea Green, 2009, 2013), which is based on the strategy that proved successful in Colorado. Steve is a member of the Bar in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Cassia FurmanCassia joins Vicente Sederberg LLC with significant experience in the representation of Colorado local governments and commercial real estate developers. Most recently, as a senior associate at a leading public finance firm in Denver, she oversaw the organization and general operations of dozens of special districts in connection with complex public infrastructure projects, including the issuance of multi-million dollar debt issuances. Prior to this time, Cassia assisted in the representation of numerous Western Slope municipalities, where her duties included the drafting and implementation of comprehensive medical marijuana ordinances. Cassia’s areas of expertise include municipal and special district law, elections, public meetings and open records, statutory compliance, public bidding, construction contracts and administration, intergovernmental agreements, public-private partnerships, public finance, debt issuance and restructuring, real estate due diligence and acquisitions, commercial leasing, negotiation of annexation and development agreements, and land use issues. Cassia is a 2004 graduate of the University of Colorado School of Law and also attended Hamilton College, where she graduated in 2000, magna cum laude, as a member of Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies.
Shawn HauserShawn Hauser, Esq., is a senior associate at Vicente Sederberg LLC, the first national law firm dedicated exclusively to marijuana law and policy with offices in Denver, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Washington D.C. and Boston. Vicente Sederberg was a key player in the historic effort to legalize marijuana in Colorado and have been leaders in similar efforts nationally and worldwide. Shawn routinely advises marijuana and hemp businesses in navigating the intersection between state and federal law, licensing, general business representation, investment, regulatory compliance, and intellectual property. Shawn works with clients to form compliant business structures to best position them for success in Colorado and nationally and to create innovative solutions to manage emerging and complex marijuana laws. Shawn directed Sensible Colorado’s local government implementation team following the passage of Amendment 64 and works with local governments, in both Colorado and nationally, to develop and implement marijuana regulations to advance the cannabis industry in a dynamic and responsible manner. After graduating from University of Denver Sturm College of Law, Shawn was an associate attorney at McAllister, Darnell, & Gottlieb PC, one of the first marijuana-focused law firms in Colorado. She was named one of “Denver’s Top Lawyers” by 5280 Magazine in 2015, 2016, and 2017.
Allen HopperAllen Hopper, Of Counsel with Vicente Sederberg LLC, has more than 20 years of experience advising government and private-sector clients concerning local, state and federal drug laws and regulations and helping them envision, create and implement improvements including innovative public safety and criminal justice solutions such as tightly regulated cannabis markets and alternatives to incarceration. Allen was a civil rights litigator and legislative policy advocate with the ACLU for more than a decade, including serving as the Litigation Director of the National ACLU’s Drug Law Reform Project, where he coordinated the ACLU’s drug policy-related litigation and litigated cases across the nation as part of an overall strategy to combine impact litigation with policy and legislative advocacy and public education to transform public understanding of, and government response to, drug use and drug policies. At the California ACLU he founded and directed the state-wide Criminal Justice and Drug Policy Project (CJDP), where he focused on down-sizing California jails and prisons, drug law enforcement, medical marijuana implementation issues and broader marijuana law reform. Allen has extensive experience drafting state criminal justice reform ballot initiatives and advising the campaigns run to enact them. In 2014, he served as the Senior Legal and Strategic Advisor to the Prop. 47 campaign, a California voter-approved ballot initiative to end felony punishment for low level drug possession and theft crimes. Allen helped draft ballot initiatives seeking to legalize, tax and regulate cannabis, including California’s Prop. 64 on the November, 2016 ballot.
Michael HuttnerMichael Huttner, Of Counsel with Vicente Sederberg, is a corporate and political strategist, attorney and entrepreneur. He is the current Political Director and immediate past CEO of Fenton, the global social change agency. Michael initiated the first meeting in Colorado to decriminalize recreational cannabis which led to the drafting and passage of Amendment 64. He previously served as President of the Huttner Group, Inc., a Boulder-based firm which helps solve complex financial, communications and public policy problems in a variety of industries. Michael has helped launch over 40 different political organizations and has led communications ‘war-rooms’ for political and private clients. Michael also is the Founder of ProgressNow, a network of state-based communications organizations that moves people to action through communications and digital media. Described as the “crown jewel” of progressive investors’ efforts to build messaging power in the states, ProgressNow continues to expand with more than 3.4 million members in 23 states Previously, Michael was a founding partner in the Denver law firm of Foster, Graham and Huttner where he headed the firm’s political, nonprofit and lobbying practice. Prior to his private practice, he worked as Policy Advisor to Governor Roy Romer and clerked at the Clinton White House for the Office of the Counsel to the President Michael also has taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Denver College of Law. He earned his J.D. from the University of California, Hastings Law School, where he served on the Hastings Law Journal, and his B.A. from Brown University. Michael is admitted to practice law in Colorado, and Washington, D.C.
Tim LongTim spent more than a decade as a corporate associate at two New York City law firms, where he specialized in project finance and leveraged leasing before refocusing his practice on private equity fund formation. Upon being promoted to counsel, he expanded his field of work to include the structuring and purchase of private equity fund interests in the secondary market. As a corporate and transactional lawyer, Tim was regularly required to analyze and structure various types of corporate transactions and review, draft, and negotiate complex documents. He graduated cum laude from the New York University School of Law, and he is a member of the California and New York state bar associations.
Justin JohnsonJustin Johnson is an Associate with Vicente Sederberg's licensing department. He has extensive experience in reviewing corporate commercial contracts and purchase agreements, as well as working on complex litigation cases. He has represented low-income individuals with a variety of consumer issues, and he helped lead the U.S. Department of Justice's investigations into fraudulent mortgage-backed securities. Justin received his law degree from the Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver, and he is a member of the Colorado and Iowa state bar associations.
Sally Kent PeeblesSally Kent Peebles, Esq. is a senior associate in Vicente Sederberg LLC's Jacksonville office and is licensed to practice in Colorado, Florida and Oregon. She currently focuses her practice on corporate, commercial real estate and regulatory matters. Sally has been a guest speaker at various marijuana business conferences, covering such topics as licensing and investment in the marijuana industry. Prior to joining the firm, Sally practiced at a Denver law firm that focused on natural resources and energy, where she drafted oil and gas title opinions and performed due diligence for acquisition and divestiture transactions. During law school, Sally interned at Jacksonville Legal Aid, where she represented clients in domestic violence and family law matters. Prior to attending law school, Sally was a publicist and booking agent for music entertainment artists in Los Angeles, CA and Boulder, CO. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a law degree from Florida State University College of Law.
Brandon KurtzmanBrandon Kurtzman, Esq., is a senior associate in the Massachusetts office of Vicente Sederberg. Prior to joining Vicente Sederberg, Brandon worked as a solo practitioner whose practice focused on civil and criminal litigation. Brandon primarily advises medical marijuana dispensary applicants and ancillary marijuana businesses in Massachusetts on corporate, licensing, regulatory, land use, and compliance issues. Brandon graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Lafayette College and received his law degree from New England School of Law where he was a New England Scholar and served as the Senior Editor on the New England Journal of International and Comparative Law. Brandon is currently licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Barton MorrisBarton Morris is the principal attorney and founder of the Cannabis Legal Group, a Detroit-based law firm specializing in marijuana-related legal issues including criminal defense, business law, licensing, consulting, land use, compliance, and intellectual property. Barton is one of the top cannabis law lawyers in Michigan, developing his expertise since the enactment of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act in 2008. He is a council member of the Marijuana Law Section of the Michigan Bar Association and chair of its science committee. He is the only attorney in Michigan certified by the American Chemical Society as a Forensic Lawyer-Scientist maintaining a focus on marijuana-related science. He is also a graduate of the prestigious Gerry Spence Trial Lawyer’s College and sits on its Alumni Board of Directors. Barton maintains board positions with and sits on the faculties of the DUI Defense Lawyers Association and the Michigan Association of OWI attorneys. He was recognized by Super Lawyer Magazine as an outstanding attorney in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, and he received a 10/10 rating by AVVO. Dbusiness Magazine also named Barton Morris a Top Attorney in Metro Detroit in 2012 and 2013 and named the Cannabis Legal Group the “Face of Cannabis Law” for 2016 and 2017.
Jerrico Perez BennettJerrico Perez Bennet, Esq. is an associate with Vicente Sederberg LLC’s Denver office. Jerrico is a graduate of Denver Sturm College of Law and is licensed to practice law in Colorado. While in law school, Jerrico practiced in the DU Criminal Defense Clinic for over two years and was also a member of DU Law’s Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter. Jerrico started her work at Vicente Sederberg as a law clerk after working with a marijuana consulting group where she helped with national applications and licensing. Jerrico came to Denver in 2012 from Austin, Texas, where she received her Bachelor’s in political science at the University of Texas at Austin. While at the University of Texas, Jerrico interned for state representative, Rep. Ryan Guillen, during the 82nd legislative session. She focuses her practice on regulatory compliance and national applications.
Nick RichardsNicholas J. Richards is tax counsel with Vicente Sederberg LLC and is a partner at Dill Dill Carr Stonbraker & Hutchings, PC. Nicholas advises businesses and individuals regarding Federal and State tax matters (including Section 280E) and represents them in audits, trials and tax collection matters. He began his legal career as a trial attorney with the IRS in Southern California where he also served as a Special Assistant United States Attorney. While there, Nicholas represented the IRS in the U.S. Tax and Bankruptcy Courts, he conducted investigations and lead special projects, he advised revenue officers and agents, and he taught trial practice, collections and other topics to junior IRS attorneys. His career took him from Southern California to Washington D.C. where he spent two years developing tax policy, and then to Denver Colorado where he returned to tax court litigation. After 11 years in the IRS, Nicholas joined a small but sophisticated tax firm and, shortly thereafter, he began representing cannabis businesses. In 2013, Nicholas was asked to teach State and Local Tax at the University of Denver, Graduate Tax Program where he is currently an Adjunct Professor of Law. Nick resolves tax problems for businesses and individuals, he teaches tax and section 280E to other tax professionals, and he is a leading tax attorney and expert for the legal cannabis industry.
Frank RobisonFrank Robison, Esq. is an Senior Associate at Vicente Sederberg LLC. Frank currently focuses his practice on corporate, private equity, commercial and intellectual property matters. Prior to joining Vicente Sederberg, Frank worked as Assistant Counsel at the University of Colorado Boulder and as Research Counsel in the University of Colorado Boulder’s Technology Transfer Office. Frank worked on a wide array of legal matters for the University, but focused on research compliance (controlled substances, controlled technologies, export controls) and intellectual property. Prior to becoming a lawyer, Frank had seventeen years of business management and entrepreneurial experience at various high-tech companies, including working in the telecommunications and the semi-conductor sectors and owning robotics-based manufacturing and IT consulting businesses. Frank was a Peace Corps Volunteer, Agricultural Extensionist, in Honduras from 1994-1996. Frank received a B.A. from Colby College, cum laude, an M.A. from the University of California San Diego, cum laude, a J.D. from Vermont Law School, magna cum laude and LL.Ms from the University of Seville, Spain (Constitutional Law) and the University of Colorado Boulder (Entrepreneurial Law). Frank is fluent in Spanish, conversational in Portuguese and familiar with Chichewa, a Bantu dialect. He is also a licensed U.S. Customs Broker.
Jessica ScardinaJessica Scardina is an associate at Vicente Sederberg, LLC's Denver office. Prior to joining Vicente Sederberg, Jessica worked at a small Denver law firm specializing in corporate law, business planning, and taxation. Jessica currently focuses her practice on corporate, licensing, and regulatory matters. Jessica is a graduate of the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, where she served as a staff editor for the University of Denver Law Review. Prior to moving to Denver in 2004, Jessica lived in Santa Cruz, California, where she received her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, from the University of California at Santa Cruz.
Jeremy ShawJeremy Shaw is an associate in Vicente Sederberg LLC’s Massachusetts office. Jeremy graduated from Northeastern University School of Law in 2016, where he earned his J.D. with a concentration in Business & Commercial Law. During his time at NUSL, Jeremy interned with Vicente Sederberg LLC’s Massachusetts and Denver offices, as well as with Federal District Court Judge Nathaniel Gorton of the Massachusetts Federal District Court. Jeremy also served as co-Chair of NUSL’s chapter of Students for Sensible Drug Policy. Prior to entering law school, Jeremy worked as a paralegal at a national title insurance company, and subsequently started a small title services business. Jeremy lives in Brookline, Massachusetts, where he serves as a Town Meeting Member for Precinct 4. Jeremy received his B.A. in Philosophy and Politics from Brandeis University in 2010.
Joshua SheltonJosh is a seasoned corporate transactional attorney with substantial experience representing successful startups and emerging growth companies over his 10-plus years as an attorney. Leading Business and Corporate Affairs for the VS California Practice Group, Josh advises on all things related to corporate formation, financing, mergers, acquisitions, intellectual property registration and protection, contractual matters, and regulatory compliance. A specialist in all aspects of deal structuring, negotiation, and documentation, Josh takes tremendous pride in being a nexus point for originating and closing large-scale business transactions on behalf of his clients. In addition, Josh has unparalleled experience in brand licensing, celebrity licensing, and strategic partnership formation, having been a critical element in many of the cannabis endorsement and promotion transactions to date. Josh is a Southern California native, and he was awarded a Dean's Scholarship and the Hanes Foundation Scholarship to attend the University of Southern California, where he received his bachelor's degree. He received his juris doctor degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.
Phil SilvermanPhil Silverman graduated with a B.A. in Government in 1985 from Dartmouth College and graduated cum laude in 1989 from the University of San Diego School of Law, where he won the George von L. Meyer Constitutional Law award. He has practiced commercial law in Boston, Massachusetts for over 25 years with a focus on business bankruptcy reorganizations and personal insolvency matters. He was the Chief Operating Officer for MassMedicum Corp., a Massachusetts medical marijuana dispensary, before returning to law practice in Vicente Sederberg’s Boston office. He presently resides with his wife and three children in Easton, Massachusetts.
Ted TrimpaTed Trimpa, Esq., of counsel with Vicente Sederberg LLC, is the Principal and CEO of Trimpa Group LLC, a national political consulting and government relations firm that specializes in progressive public policy advocacy and political strategy. With offices in Washington D.C. and Denver, Trimpa Group develops cutting-edge public policy strategies at the state and federal levels. Trimpa also serves as a board member for numerous organizations, including the Democracy Alliance, ProgressNow, Third Way, Citizen Engagement Laboratory, and Tectonic Theater Project. Trimpa is one of the country's most sought-after advocates resulting from his deep understanding of the national and multi-state public policy, political, and nonprofit landscape. Called "Colorado's answer to Karl Rove" by The Atlantic, Trimpa is a nationally recognized Democratic strategist and operative. He is considered a key architect of the political infrastructure that facilitated the Democratic Party's resurgence in Colorado after decades of Republican dominance—a turnaround so dramatic National Review dubbed it the "Colorado miracle." Campaigns & Elections recently named him one of the top five Democratic political players in the state. In addition to his work in Colorado, Trimpa is a nationally recognized thought leader and a leading advisor to progressive donors and foundations. He is also a visionary within the gay rights movement and considered an early pioneer in advocating for political strategies focused at the state level. He has been recognized in national publications, including The Weekly Standard, The Atlantic, National Review, and The Advocate, for his central role in designing cutting-edge public policy strategies. Trimpa was raised on a small family farm in southwestern Kansas and got his start in politics by working for U.S. Senator Nancy Kassebaum. Prior to forming Trimpa Group, Ted was a shareholder at both Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck and Hogan Lovells where he was responsible for matters before the Colorado General Assembly and had a multi-state public policy practice.
David UllianDavid M. Ullian, Esq., is an associate in Vicente Sederberg’s Massachusetts office. He currently focuses his practice on corporate, licensing, regulatory, and compliance matters. David received his B.A. from Amherst College, and before law school, he worked as a Corporate Legal Assistant at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP in New York City. David received his J.D. from Boston University School of Law, where he served as an Editor for the American Journal of Law & Medicine and completed a Concentration in Health Law with Honors. During law school, he also interned at Boston Children’s Hospital, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, and the American Civil Liberties Union of South Carolina. After law school, David was awarded a BU Law Public Service Fellowship to work in the General Counsel’s Office at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. Prior to joining Vicente Sederberg, David worked for a Boston law firm specializing in white collar criminal defense and government investigations. David is admitted to practice in Massachusetts, the District of Columbia, and South Carolina.
Jordan WellingtonJordan Wellington, Esq., an associate at Vicente Sederberg LLC, graduated cum laude from Brooklyn Law School in May of 2009. His primary focus at Vicente Sederberg is on regulatory compliance and government affairs. In 2013, Jordan served as the sole legislative staffer assigned to shepherd the legislation relating to the implementation of Amendment 64 and the legalization of marijuana through the Colorado General Assembly. Jordan was then hired by the Colorado Department of Revenue's Marijuana Enforcement Division to serve as the sole policy analyst during the development and drafting of the rules governing retail marijuana and the revised rules governing medical marijuana. During his time with the Marijuana Enforcement Division, Jordan drafted rules governing testing, cultivation, product manufacturing, concentrate production, retail distribution, production management, transportation, certification of laboratories, labeling, packaging, and storage. He also organized the Division's entire stakeholder engagement process and personally chaired several of the working groups. Jordan is honored to be selected to serve on Marijuana Research Advisory Group, which was convened by the Colorado School of Public Health at UCD, and Advisory Board on Good Marijuana Cultivation and Handling Practices, convened by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. In addition to his expertise in the regulation of the marijuana industry, Jordan has also worked for the New Jersey Legislature, New York Assemblyman Jonathan Bing, and the Epilepsy Foundation of NJ. Also, Jordan is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Prevent Child Abuse Colorado.
Carl WernerCarl Werner, Esq., is an associate in Vicente Sederberg LLC’s Denver office. Carl graduated from Harvard Law School in 2016, where he was a research assistant to Professor Charles Nesson and clerked for the ACLU of Massachusetts. He originally joined Vicente Sederberg as a law clerk in 2014. Carl currently focuses his practice on several areas of law, including corporate and small business transactions, products liability and international law. Prior to entering law school, Carl co-founded two small businesses, worked as a writer and tax preparer, and served as a campaign staffer for Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri during her successful 2012 re-election race. Carl is originally from the Kansas City, Missouri area, and received a B.A. in History from the University of Missouri in 2010.
Policy & Compliance
Nicola BattenNicola Batten is a regulatory affairs liaison at Vicente Sederberg. Nicola has worked with clients on multiple licensing applications in Massachusetts, Nevada, Illinois and Minnesota. Prior to joining the office, she was the Director of Outreach for the Question 3 campaign, which legalized medical marijuana in the state of Massachusetts. Nicola got her bachelor's degree in political science and master's degree from the Women in Politics and Public Policy Program at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She interned at the Massachusetts State House for State Representative Ruth Balser. She recently moved from Boston to Denver, Colorado.
Dwight ClarkDwight Clark is the Technical Writer for Vicente Sederberg, where he specializes in national licensing. He has worked on medical and adult use applications for clients in Florida, California, Ohio, and Arkansas. Mr. Clark spent four years as the Legislative and Communications Director for Texas State Senator, José Menéndez. As Legislative Director, he drafted and advocated for Texas’ first comprehensive medical cannabis legislation. As Communications Director, he was the Senator’s principal speech writer, online content producer, and regularly interfaced with the media. Mr. Clark also served as Committee Clerk for the Defense and Veterans Affairs Committee in the Texas House of Representatives. Prior to working in the legislature, he spent a decade successfully managing political campaigns—ranging from city council to president. Mr. Clark is also a featured speaker on cannabis policy and regulation, having spoken at SXSW and numerous other civic engagements, panels, and conferences.
Chloe GrossmanChloe Grossman is a Policy Specialist at Vicente Sederberg and is also Deputy Director of VS Strategies, a government affairs sister company of Vicente Sederberg. She also serves as the founding Deputy Director of the Council on Responsible Cannabis Regulation, a cannabis policy and advocacy non-profit organization. Chloe is a member of the Minority Cannabis Business Association's Policy Committee and is the Research Director for the National Cannabis Industry Association's federal Policy Council. Since joining VS Strategies and CRCR in 2015, Chloe has advised local, state, and national government officials and developed policy solutions for public and private sector entities. She previously consulted on cannabis business licensing applications and tracked state-level cannabis policy for Denver Relief Consulting after obtaining a master's degree in sociology from the University of California at Davis. While in graduate school, Chloe specialized in cannabis policy, race and ethnic relations, and quantitative analysis, served as President of Students for Sensible Drug Policy at UC Davis, and served as cannabis policy intern under Dr. Amanda Reiman at the Drug Policy Alliance in San Francisco. She also interned for the Drug Policy Alliance in Colorado after graduating from the University of Denver in 2011 with a dual degree in sociology and psychology.
Andrew LivingstonAndrew Livingston serves as Director of Economics and Research for Vicente Sederberg LLC. He first worked alongside the Vicente Sederberg team in 2012 during Colorado’s Amendment 64 campaign, which legalized marijuana for adults. Before starting a career in cannabis market and policy analysis, he focused his studies at Colgate University on the economics of illegal drugs and the harms they create for societies around the world. Andrew is often asked to speak at business and legal seminars around the country and internationally on the intersection of market dynamics and cannabis policy. At Vicente Sederberg, Andrew provides analysis on legal and regulatory matters as well as economic market projections for adult-use and medical marijuana laws in Colorado and around the world. Andrew also sits on the Denver Cannabis Sustainability Working Group and helps coordinate government and industry efforts to increase environmental stewardship within cannabis business.
Genevieve MeehanGenevieve Meehan works primarily with the Compliance Department as a Program Coordinator for Vicente Sederberg LLC. She is a graduate of West Chester University outside of Philadelphia, PA where she studied political science with a concentration in public health and policy analysis. While leading a Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter on campus and serving as the Northeast Regional Coordinator for AMPLIFY, Genevieve discovered her passion for both harm reduction and patient advocacy. She used these positions to organize harm reduction efforts for adolescents in low income minority communities, as well as high school and college campuses. She has used her unique understanding of patients needs for safe access to effective medicine to advocate for drug policy reform at county, state, and regional levels. Genevieve was introduced to Vicente Sederberg during the Drug Policy Alliance Reform Conference held in Denver in 2012, and made the decision to relocate to Denver shortly after to pursue her personal and professional interest in medicinal cannabis and spend her spare time in the mountains.
Angela AlwellAngela Alwell is the office manager at Vicente Sederberg LLC. She received her Bachelor's in Public Administration at National University in Vista, CA in 1989, while managing Aladdin Aviation Flight School in Carlsbad, CA and being a single mother of two. Just one year later, she received her Paralegal Certificate from the University of California at San Diego and earned her pilot's license during that same time frame. Angela began her paralegal career in Aviation law due to her background in aviation. In 1993, she moved into state criminal defense with the Law Office of Suzanne Rogers, PC, eventually working with Ms. Rogers for nearly two decades. In 2011, she began working for Philip Cherner (now with Vicente Sederberg), assisting him on high-end state and federal criminal defense cases, post conviction matters and appellate work. Angela was the office manager as well as paralegal for both firms. She has extensive experience in jury selection, jury interviewing post-verdict and has sat at counsel table in approximately 40 felony trials.
Sarah BeeSarah Bee serves in multiple roles at Vicente Sederberg LLC. In addition to acting as the Executive Coordinator for Partners Brian Vicente, Christian Sederberg & Joshua Kappel, she also increases awareness of the firm’s lobbying efforts in the position of Media Administrator. A graduate of Fort Lewis College, in Durango, Colo., she studied journalism and communications, and has since worked in positions which focus on social media, SEO, and writing for the Web. She is a seasoned office manager, and also flourishes in fundraising and event planning. She brings all of this experience to Vicente Sederberg in an effort to fuel her passion for the ever-evolving cannabis industry, and work as part of a team that both defines and celebrates Denver's unique culture and community.
Tim CallahanTim Callahan, Senior Paralegal, joined the Massachusetts office of Vicente Sederberg, LLC as a Legal Assistant in 2013. He graduated summa cum laude from Southern New Hampshire University, where he majored in Political Science and received the Outstanding Political Science Student Award upon graduation. During his time at Southern New Hampshire University, he served as a writing, American politics, and statistics tutor and was the Editor in Chief of the student newspaper. Tim is responsible for the administration of the Massachusetts office and works closely with the attorneys in that office in all application-related matters.
Lisa CisnerosLisa Cisneros, the former Executive Director of Coloradans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty Foundation, is a seasoned paralegal experienced in all aspects of legal support to criminal defense -- with particular emphasis on legal support to death penalty litigators. Lisa worked as the Lead Paralegal to one of the region's most well-known death penalty litigation experts for 10 years and for the last 5 years also has worked to organize state wide opposition to the death penalty and efforts for death penalty abolition in Colorado and throughout the country. She led two legislative efforts to repeal Colorado's death penalty policy before the State Legislature and brought together victim family members, faith leaders, former law enforcement personnel and people of color to speak for repeal before Colorado's state elected officials. Lisa studied Psychology & Criminal Justice at Metro State University in Denver and has attended numerous specialized legal courses and seminars.
Brent EadsBrent Eads, Licensing Specialist, joined Vicente Sederberg’s Denver office in 2017. He graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana with his Bachelor’s in Telecommunications. He is an Army veteran with six years of military service with deployments to Iraq and Haiti. As a research specialist, he has accumulated over six years of experience in licensing, permitting and public representation. In his off time, Brent has traditionally volunteered with various humanitarian organizations. His hobbies include part time entrepreneurial projects and writing.
Kimura MercerBorn and raised in South Dakota, Kimura ("Kimmie") moved to Denver in June of 2013 and joined VS in 2017 as the receptionist. Kimura is passionate about working in the groundbreaking cannabis industry because she believes in holistic wellness and using alternative healing methods, such as cannabis, in lieu of prescription medications. From 2014 to 2017 she worked in retail as a Visual Merchandising Manager, where she learned great customer service, time management and organizational skills. Prior to that she worked in state government in Pierre, South Dakota for the Department of Labor as a clerk in Unemployment Insurance Appeals.
Jillian MeyersonJillian is the Administrative Assistant for the Boston office of Vicente Sederberg, LLC. She graduated from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in the spring of 2016 with a degree in English Literature and a minor in Theatre. During her undergraduate career, she participated in the Undergraduate Research Conference, was the member of Lambda Iota Tau, Sigma Delta Tau, and Alpha Chi honor societies, and earned an award for excellence in Literary Criticism from the college.
Ronn NixonRonn is a Colorado native who is joining the Denver VS office as a Legal Assistant and will be assisting with licensing issues as well as lending his expertise in fundraising for our various causes and concerns. Ronn has volunteered as both an intake paralegal and trainer with Colorado Legal Services for more than ten years. As a passionate advocate, Ronn continues to be integrally involved with cannabis policy in Colorado’s local jurisdictions, MED regulatory work groups, legislative stakeholder groups, the Colorado Task Force on Drunk & Impaired Driving as well as the Colorado Department of Health & Environment’s Retail Marijuana Public Health Advisory Committee.
Jenny ScottJenny is the Licensing Supervisor at Vicente Sederberg and has over five years of marijuana licensing experience. Prior to working at Vicente Sederberg, Jenny was the Licensing Supervisor for the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses, which gave her in-depth experience processing marijuana licensing applications. Her expertise and knowledge of state and local licensing procedures make her uniquely qualified to assist with new licensing applications, renewals, ownership changes, corporate structure changes, and all other marijuana-related licensing needs. Twenty-plus years of office administration and customer service experience have prepared her for difficult projects and complex licensing tasks, which she enjoys working through with clients and staff. Jenny has been in Colorado most of her life. She has two children and enjoys martial arts, spending time with family and cheering on the Broncos!
Dawn Van VleetDawn Van Vleet had a previous relationship with Vicente Consulting dating back to 2010, when she serviced their telecommunications systems. She worked in that industry for over 15 years and received numerous certificates in cabling, phone installations and business development. In addition to her telecommunications experience, Dawn has been the bookkeeper for her husband’s construction company for over 20 years. Dawn joined Vicente Sederberg in 2014, and is responsible for the accounts receivable department.
Vicente Sederberg Professor of Marijuana Law and Policy
University of Denver Sturm College of Law
In 2015, Sam Kamin was named the Vicente Sederberg Professor of Marijuana Law and Policy for the University of Denver. The purpose of this three-year professorship is to allow a Sturm College of Law faculty member to dedicate time and resources toward the development of intelligent marijuana law and policy and engage students in this important work. To be held initially by Professor Sam Kamin, it is believed to be the first professorship of its kind in the world. Sam Kamin is a Professor at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. He has become one of the nation’s leading experts on the regulation of marijuana; in 2012 he was appointed to Governor John Hickenlooper’s Task Force to Implement Amendment 64 and is currently serving on the ACLU of California’s blue ribbon panel to study marijuana legalization. He is the author of several books and numerous scholarly articles including more than a dozen on marijuana law and policy.