Podcast Episode: ‘Modern Day Mary Kay’: From House Parties for Edibles to Cannabis MSO

When wildfires struck Northern California a few years ago, much of Erin Gore’s life literally went up in smoke. The CEO of the Garden Society, a vertically integrated craft cannabis company in Sonoma County, came dangerously close to taking a finance deal that could have led to professional and financial disaster. But an astute and supportive business coach suggested another path for Erin, and today the Garden Society is on the cusp of going multistate.

In this episode of “Seed to CEO,” Erin shares:

  • How her experience in winemaking helped her navigate the cannabis industry – and how it didn’t.
  • Why turning away money with the wrong terms can be a boon for your business.
  • Why saying “no” is a critical skill for executives – and how to hold yourself accountable for it.
  • Why you can’t be afraid to fire someone who isn’t doing your company right.

Who is Erin Gore?

Erin Gore began using cannabis to deal with pain earned from a college basketball career at the University of Wisconsin. Before long, however, she was baking edibles and hosting marijuana parties for her girlfriends. Her professional career includes 10 years at Henkel, an international adhesives company, where she became the first woman to lead a business unit at the company, all while moonlighting as the co-founder of her husband’s successful wine business. Erin left Henkel to launch the Garden Society in 2016. Since then, she’s also become a passionate advocate and ambassador for women. In 2021, she was a winner of the North Bay Business Journal’s Women in Business awards.

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