Only in Colorado could a self-styled entrepreneur become a major player in a marijuana-reality program without having any experience in the cannabis industry. Meet Katherine Grimm.
After several episodes of CNN's High Profits, about a couple in Breckenridge who own a pot shop (BCC), Grimm appeared as a counter point-of-view to the couple's interests (keeping their shop on Main Street). She claimed to be hired by other shops who felt shafted by the city's regulations. Each episode concentrated more and more on Grimm, leading us to wonder who she was and how she got to this estimable position.
A little web research took us to her website, Clever Gent, a marketing and branding firm, which she launched in April. After tweeting a question about her, Grimm replied and said she's be open to an interview. We sent her the following questions:
So how did you get involved with the show?
Bat Bridge Entertainment was already in town filming for the show. I spoke up at a town council meeting and they approached me afterwards for an interview. My involvement just grew naturally from there. I certainly wouldn’t have sought out this level of exposure this early in my involvement in the industry, but when the opportunity to shine a light on the fact that this industry is just like any other presented itself, I seized it.
As to why they chose to include me to such a significant degree is more of a question for the producers, Bat Bridge Entertainment. My speculation would be that it was to provide an industry perspective that was a little different than BCC’s but it also could’ve just been because I’ve got great shoes.
You're described alternately on the show as a "marijuana entrepreneur" and "Airport Road representative." What is your relationship with the shops on Airport Road?
I was hired by the three recreational shops on Airport Road to represent them in the Main St dispute. Once the town council decided to send this to a vote, and generally agreed that if the answer was yes, they would allow the other dispensaries to compete on Main Street, we terminated our formal business relationship.
In Episode 5, you said you were looking to start a grow facility. Has that ever happened?
I have to be vague about that. Stay tuned.
What else have you done in the cannabis world?
In this show, you are seeing my first entrance into the marijuana industry. Since then, I spent some time with the Marijuana Industry Group to understand the Colorado state legislative landscape. I’ve also taken two trips to DC to lobby on Capitol Hill with Women Grow and with NCIA. I’ve been been attending and contributing to the multitude of industry conferences in order to continue to get connected and provide support. I hope to be able to continue to shine more positive light on this industry and to normalize cannabis use with things like the #comingoutgreen campaign.
Where are you from?
I grew up in Baltimore and went to college at the University of Maryland, College Park. My degree is in Neurobiology/Physiology with a concentration in Psychology. At the time, I thought that I wanted to go to med school but ultimately decided that I didn’t want to give up my life to the lengthy schooling process and instead jumped into the business world.
I moved to Breckenridge a few years ago in order to be closer to family. My brother had lived here for over 10 years, started having babies, and I wanted to be able to spend more time with them.
What qualified you to get involved in the Main Street fight? As BCC's Brian Rogers asks, what was your motivation?
The same thing that qualifies anyone for anything: Someone was willing to pay me to do it. I hadn’t ever worked with a local town council before but I am an intelligent, well spoken, driven individual who’s able to see both sides of an argument and the Airport Road guys recognized that.
In terms of my motivation, it was two fold. Initially, I was hired (paid) to ensure that the Airport Road folks has a seat at the table. But I also fundamentally disagreed so much with Brian’s strategy to maintain his sole position on Main Street that I wanted to change the conversation.
Are you happy with how High Profits turned out?
Overall, I’m extremely happy with High Profits. The production quality is phenomenal and the story is told in such a compelling and engaging manner that keeps the viewer coming back. Bat Bridge’s ability to stay true to the story without influencing the outcome is groundbreaking. No matter your opinion on marijuana, on the drama, on BCC, on me, this show has opened up the conversation.
How's Clever Gent going? Have many clients?
We set up the consulting company just prior to the show airing and have honestly been so busy just managing the exposure that we haven’t had a moment to start actively pursuing clients. We did however meet with the most amazing cultivation team in the industry, which has really prioritized our focus. They’re currently producing twice the yield than anyone else is at half the cost pe0r pound. What they’re doing is not only genius, it’s revolutionary. We are currently working with the master growers to package and distribute their methodology. We are going to bring this game changing method to the market with a major splash. No exaggeration here, you are going to want to stay tuned.