The National Hemp Association is currently governed by a 4 member volunteer Board. Each member serves a two year term automatically renewed for a maximum of 5 terms. Board members come from many of the nation’s most experienced hemp professionals.
Below are our current NHA Board members.
Geoff Whaling – Chair –Geoffrey W. Whaling served as Co-founder and President of publicly traded Collective Growth Corporation, which combined on April 5, 2021, with Innoviz Technologies in a $1.4 billion transaction. Collective Growth Corporation raised $150 million before beginning public trading under the ticker symbol CGRO in April 2020. Today, continuing his work to bring private sectors capital to the hemp industry, Whaling established rePlant Hemp LLC, a $500 M VC/PE fund, and launched rePlant Hemp Impact Fund 1 LLC, which is currently raising $75-$100M. Mr. Whaling has worked for over seven years to advance the farming, deregulation, and market development of the hemp crop in North America; he has served for six years as Chair of the National Hemp Association (NHA), one of the world’s largest Hemp advocacy groups. NHA is based in Washington D.C. and is considered the leading non-partisan voice for the hemp industry. Mr. Whaling is considered one of the leading global voices and experts on hemp as a food-and-fiber commodity crop. Through his leadership, NHA has provided platforms to address Social Equity, State and now International support for this growing industry which has a TAM globally estimated at $15 Trillion. He continues intensive ongoing dialog with The White House and Members of Congress to pass federal legislation to remove barriers to hemp industry growth; he had a seat at the table in the formation of the critical 2018 US Farm Bill, which made hemp legal to grow and research in all 50 states. He is now working on drafts of the 2023 Farm Bill while NNHA works in collaboration with key stakeholders to address relevant and necessary industry regulations. Mr. Whaling continues educating politicians and policymakers, regularly addressing groups including USDA, State Regulators, the WTO, EU and the United Nations as this industry evolves. Whaling was Co-Founder and former President of Canopy Growth Corporation HIP and Strategic Advisor, CBD, and Hemp, the world’s largest Hemp and Cannabis Company. In those roles, Geoff leads CGC’s expansion into the Hemp and CBD industry. With an extensive network within the hemp industry, major adjacent industries, and global governing bodies, Mr. Whaling is uniquely positioned to help develop, support and maintain the global hemp supply chain. Born in Canada (a dual US/Canadian citizen), Mr. Whaling’s areas of expertise are wide-ranging, given the diversity of his government, business, entrepreneurial and philanthropic work. A profound sense of “wanting to serve” remains an integral part of his life.
Alex Seleznov – Treasurer – Alex is an experienced financial officer and business executive specializing in non-profits, Board of Directors, and Fin-Tech including Blockchain and Cryptocurrency.
Alex is the National Director of Finance at PC’s for People, a national non-profit recycling computer electronics to provide the life-changing impact of low-cost computers and mobile internet to low-income and disadvantaged individuals. As a long-time vegan and animal rights supporter, Alex also offers business consulting and coaching services to plant-based companies.
His hemp experience includes being the Founder of the Pure Hemp Botanicals CBD brand and former CEO of a vertically integrated hemp operation from 2015 to 2020. The business operated several divisions including growing, processing, manufacturing, and retailing hemp products.
Prior to those positions, Alex spent three years in the horticulture industry with one of the largest greenhouse growers in the western United States. Alex joined the NHA in October of 2014 and became a Board Member in 2015. Named one of the top 100 people to know in Cannabis by The Hemp Connoisseur magazine, Alex brings over 20 years of financial and business acumen to the NHA from a diverse array of industries including manufacturing, public accounting, health care, and financial services.
Christine Ianuzzi – Secretary – Christine Ianuzzi is the Managing Partner & Show Director of CWCBExpo. She has a background in corporate America providing a creative, steady and experienced business skillset across several industries from technology to cannabis. She is a serial transition executive that has been a trigger for change and a leader in disruptive and progressive businesses in many blue-chip companies since 1987 that include ABC Television, ABC Radio Networks and HBO, as well as her own business. In 2015 Christine joined her family of entrepreneurs who owned and operated hundreds of trade shows across several industries for many decades – many in disruptive business sectors. Since 2015 Christine has built the CWCBExpo brand and business. Today, Christine is Managing Partner and Show Director for 3 trade shows that focus on the legalized cannabis industry: Cannabis World Congress & Business Expositions (CWCBExpos) in New York, Los Angeles, and Boston. Christine served on the Board of Trustees at New York University(NYU)-Polytechnic University, and also served as President of the Alumni Association of Polytechnic University of NYU.
The Cannabis World Congress & Business Expositions (CWCBExpo) are business-to-business events for the legalized cannabis industry and are held 3 times per year in the largest media, financial and business markets: New York, Los Angeles and Boston. The CWCBExpos are the leading forums offering conferences and expositions for dispensary owners, growers, suppliers, investors, medical professionals, government regulators, legal counsel, and entrepreneurs looking to achieve business success and identify new areas of growth in this dynamic and fast-growing industry.