Written by Pete Holmberg
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The Bluntness contributor Pete Holmberg highlighted StartOut, its efforts to support LGBTQ entrepreneurs and start-ups and the challenges of recognizing these Women's History Month achievements in the midst of a pandemic. The following is an excerpt from Holmberg's full piece for StartOut, which can be read here. Get more on StartOut's work to support LBGTQ entrepreneurs through its Growth Lab program here.
Nancy Do, Founder & CEO of Endo Industries, an innovative cannabis and hemp supply chain platform that bridges plant genetics with a collaborative network of operators to build scalable brands for impact and human health: As a decade-long cannabis entrepreneur and advocate, Nancy has navigated a labyrinth of conflicting state and federal laws that have resulted in her personally facing raids and arrests over the years. Even though cannabis businesses are excluded from benefiting from Federal Relief initiatives put in place recently, it was in March of 2020 that cannabis was declared an essential business by California and many other legal states. The irony isn’t lost on her, but her focus is very much on healing and perseverance.
“I come to the world of cannabis from a place of healing. My mother was driven to suicide by chronic pain, so I have never doubted how essential this industry has been to people in need of relief. For me, kicking ass is helping others to heal and embracing my role as the provider of an essential service. It also means taking every precaution to safeguard my employees’ health as they continue this vital work, and continuing to show the world that this queer woman of color won’t back down in the face of nonsensical legal policies, or even a deadly virus that knows no boundaries. It is not going to be easy without government support, but we will work to draw resources from our communities to help us through these times of change. Being positive, strategic and adaptable are essential to success when resources are not as readily accessible. I’ve faced much adversity in my lifetime, and I’ve used it to my advantage in order to thrive in challenging environments.”- Nancy Do, CEO of Endo Industries