Meet The Team

Kelly Perez

Kelly Perez

CEO & FOUNDER

Kelly Perez is the CEO/founder of kindColorado, LLC (kindCO). We build relationships between cannabis businesses, communities, projects and nonprofits. We believe thoughtful, conscious community-cannabis partnerships improve community health and help shift the cannabis narrative towards positive impact.

Kelly is passionate about social justice and has expertise in strategic planning, racial justice, community health, and policy. In 2014, Kelly was the Human Services Policy Adviser to Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and lead statewide initiatives including the Colorado Plan to Reduce Prescription Drug misuse/abuse.

She organized and led a collaborative effort state to create the nation’s first state Marijuana Policy (and office) using a public health framework as a guide. She has over 20 years of professional experience working in health and human services policy, and working for equity-focused community organizations serving children and families. Kelly has a Master’s Degree in Social Work with a focus on Health Policy and International Studies from the University of Denver. She and her Love have 5 children between them.

Courtney Mathis

Courtney Mathis

PRESIDENT & FOUNDER

Courtney Mathis has 15 years of experience creating opportunities for businesses, communities, and nonprofit brands to intersect. The result of these collaborations has led to thoughtful community engagement partnerships, cross-sector brand loyalty, and high-impact, local events.

The last five years she has specialized in creating opportunities for cannabis businesses to engage with nonprofits, neighborhood groups, and other sector leaders. Her work has spanned from boutique dispensaries to national cannabis industry groups. In addition to co-founding kindColorado and the CSR™ framework, she is also the co-founder of Conscious Cannabis Co. and works in partnership with Grasslands Content Agency to produce high quality cannabis events.

Courtney is a long-time cannabis sector activist and social change leader. She believes that through strategic community outreach and dynamic messaging, that the cannabis industry will be a welcomed community asset.

She has earned her Masters in Nonprofit Management with certifications in Nonprofit Capacity Building and Nonprofit Leadership. She was honored with the David M Clarke fellowship for demonstrated leadership and potential to make a contribution to the nonprofit sector and is recognized as a civil society capacity builder.

When she isn’t working, she’s reading her favorite comic, chasing around her spunky daughter, or planning her next ocean vacation with her husband.

Janessa Nelsen

Janessa Nelsen

OPERATIONS MANAGER

Janessa is the Operations Manager for kindColorado where she can put her quiet, introverted listening skills to use to bridge gaps and bring clarity to communication while uncovering opportunities for improving business operations.

With an eclectic trove of experience ranging from financial management and communications to project management and event coordination, Janessa works to optimize all behind-the-scenes systems in order to amp up the efficacy of the big-picture work. She understands that working towards racial justice is the necessary pathway toward addressing the mass of other social injustices.

When she’s not intently listening or asking transparent questions, you will likely find Janessa out and about in Colorado with her dogs, or somewhere drooling over delicious craft beer and whole-foods.

Marc Ross

Marc Ross

CSR CONSULTANT

Marc Ross has been working to make the world a better place. As an attorney with over 25 years’ experience in the public, private and nonprofit sectors, Marc has served as a litigator for a state department of environmental protection and at a large law firm where he litigated cases on the state and federal level. He was in-house counsel to a Fortune 100 company, where he counseled the company on a wide range of compliance and permitting matters, as well as business transactions. Over the past 15 years, he has focused on the nonprofit sector, founding and building a national environmental advocacy organization that works with the music industry and has consulted both nonprofits and small businesses on matters related to philanthropy, sustainability, and corporate responsibility.

After this wide-ranging career, Marc decided that it was time to take his rich nonprofit experience, where he worked to engage and inspire communities, back to the private sector to help businesses find ways to do good in the world. Marc is a passionate optimist who understands that employees are not commodities who choose employers merely for a paycheck, but rather because they want to make a difference as well. He understands that communities are not just those neighbors who happen to be located next door, but are intertwined with a business’s success. And he feels passionately, that sustainability isn’t merely something that feels good, but is a way for all businesses to operate in a responsible manner and save money in the process.

Marc is certified by the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado in Corporate Social Responsibility as well as in Sustainability Leadership and Implementation by the Daniels School of Business at the University of Denver. He holds a J.D. from The Dickinson School of Law and a B.A. from The Pennsylvania State University.

When not working to help businesses do good while doing well, you can find him enjoying the outdoors of Colorado, at a concert by one of his favorite bands, or spending time with his family.

Sam Pendleton

Sam Pendleton

CREATIVE SERVICES CONSULTANT

Sam was born in Aspen, raised in Breckenridge, CO., and even attend CU Denver/ Boulder for College. After completing school for Architecture Design (and a whole slew of art classes on the side) she found herself back in the mountains where she took a drastic career change through a make-shift event floor plan on a kids menu while working at a restaurant and then word of mouth.

She dove in head first and found her passion for the creative end of wedding and event planning and then developing a talent for marketing those events.

With her keen eye for detail, space utilization, color, and the fact that her creative wheels are always turning, she started attending the NYIAD for Event Management and Business Management.

She loves to travel the world and surf but always manages to find her way home to Colorado and the Rocky Mountains for powder days.

Tricia Long

Tricia Long

MARKETING CONSULTANT

Tricia has a strong background in marketing, branding, and event management; provided by her 5 years promoting major music festivals across the US and Canada, as well as her current career in the Colorado cannabis industry.

Her mix of determination, positive nature, and fierce work ethic have led her to be a part of numerous successful events; including Tortuga Music Festival, Hangout Music Festival, the Colorado launch of Whoopi & Maya’s Medicinal Cannabis line, and many more.

Tricia began her marketing career in Australia while getting her Master’s in Arts & Entertainment Management. After moving back to Louisiana, she landed in the music festival-world. There she honed her skills in strategic marketing, public relations, email marketing, customer service and of course – event management.

She moved to Denver from New Orleans and co-founded a boutique cannabis marketing and events agency. She has recently moved on to new opportunities allowing her to focus on marketing for both dispensaries and cannabis brands alike. When she isn’t in the office, she’s usually plotting her next trip overseas or drinking wine on the couch with her husband and her two dogs.