Trenton —The New Jersey CannaBusiness Association (NJCBA) today announced several leadership changes following their board meeting on December 1, 2020.
“It is with bittersweet emotions that I am stepping down as President of the NJCBA,” said Scott Rudder, founder of the NJCBA. “Four years ago this month, we started on a journey to expand patient access to medical cannabis, fight to end cannabis prohibition, and help create a responsible, transparent, and inclusive cannabis industry in New Jersey. I am proud of what we’ve accomplished and I am excited about where we are going.”
Rudder, who will remain a member of the NJCBA Board of Directors, further added, “My passion for the cannabis industry remains. I am now moving on to focus my professional endeavors on the medical side of cannabis through research, education, and consultancy.”
The NJCBA Board of Directors voted to approve Edmund DeVeaux as the new president of the organization.
“Scott has done a remarkable job by creating and leading the state’s first and largest cannabis trade association. His balance of addressing New Jersey’s need for significant social justice reform while legitimizing the industry has been amazing,” said DeVeaux. “While there are many obstacles still to overcome, this is an exciting time for the cannabis industry, both in New Jersey and across the country. I look forward to working with members of the NJCBA and cannabis industry advocates to create an industry that is not only thriving, but presents equal opportunity for everyone.”
DeVeaux, a Rutgers University graduate and a commissioned officer in the United States Army, began his professional career in New Jersey state government and worked as a capital budget analyst in the New Jersey Department of the Treasury – Office of Management and Budget. He served as the Aide to the Mayor, City of New Brunswick and as special assistant to U.S. Senator Bill Bradley.
An accomplished executive, DeVeaux is currently a part of Burton Trent Public Affairs. His corporate career includes leadership roles with the country’s largest multinational water-related service and environmental companies. Utilizing his skills in the areas of government affairs and business development, Ed has been part of the external growth, internal development, and public policy and reputation management strategies for these companies.
“I am excited that Ed was elected to lead the NJCBA,” added Rudder. “He has been with me from day one and I cannot think of a better person to take the helm as New Jersey transitions into this new and expanding industry.”
Another major change to the NJCBA Board of Directors is the elevation of Tara “Misu” Sargente from Executive Director to a member of the Board of Directors.
“I am extremely excited to take on this leadership role,” stated Sargente. “My career in the cannabis industry started more than 10 years ago. I have dedicated thousands of hours to help foster the growth of an industry that focuses on health, education, quality, and inclusion. I am eager to continue these pursuits with this professional organization.”
Sargente, who served for more than two years as the Executive Director of the NJCBA, is the founder and CEO of Blazin’ Bakery, an edibles-based company that offers a diverse product line for both humans and pets.
The final announced change to NJCBA leadership is that Bill Caruso, a member of the NJCBA Board and an attorney at Archer Griener, was named General Counsel to the NJCBA.
Caruso, who is a founding member of New Jersey United for Cannabis Reform, a social justice organization that advocates for cannabis legalization and reform, has been a trusted and active voice in the cannabis debate for more than six years.