Article by Women of Influence
As a 20-year old, Alison Gordon couldn’t have fathomed one day having a full-time, let alone high-powered, job in the marijuana industry — or that pot would ever be an industry at all. Now, she’s leading 48 North Cannabis Co., an ACMPR licensed medical cannabis company, as CEO, bringing her unstifleable passion to this nascent — and controversial — segment of the consumer packaged goods industry.
My first job ever was… Working in the stockroom at the Roots flagship store on Avenue Road. I was 13 years old and too young to be a salesperson. I was thrilled just to be unpacking boxes stuffed with my favourite sweats, leathers and shoes!
I chose my career path because… I never have a plan! I get an idea and then I go for it. I started out as an academic with dreams of becoming a Professor. After I dropped out of my PhD to work in advertising, I realized that my career journey would reveal itself to me as long as I followed my passion and gut instinct.
My proudest accomplishment is… Co-founding Rethink Breast Cancer with MJ Decoteau. I am beyond proud of what we built and where MJ has taken the organization over the last four years. We shared an office for 13 years and never once had a serious argument or fight. This might be my most successful relationship ever!
My boldest move to date was… Leaving Rethink Breast Cancer to start a new career path in the medical cannabis industry. The industry was truly in its infancy when I decided four years ago to investigate making the transition. Looking back, I am glad I was naive to the challenges that would lie ahead in the fast-paced, ever changing business of marijuana.
I surprise people when I tell them… That I smoke pot. There is a big misconception as to who a cannabis user is — we come in all shapes and sizes! I have witnessed the incredible medicinal value of cannabis for patients, and I am thrilled that these stories are finally getting out to the public.
My best advice to people starting their career is… Meet as many people as you can. Who you know is truly as important as what you know. Many of the people I have hired over the years are people who have reached out to me for a coffee or advice. Initiative is often rewarded.