J. Austin, the youngest, was there with his boyfriend, Mitch Clough. (They live together in Denver and have a dog named Little Arthur Weasley.) He kept coming up to his mother, hugging her and making fun of her for how much she was loving Sundance. “He’s the fun one,” she said.
While Charlotte’s Web isn’t legally allowed to declare any medical benefits, the company said it gets hundreds of letters a week from people saying it works for Parkinson’s, lupus, PTSD and opioid withdrawal. There are people giving it to their pets.
Thomas Pierce, a 32-year-old film producer and C.E.O. of an entertainment marketing agency, was among those bingeing on the offerings. “I attended a private dinner for 50, a happy hour event with CBD beer and tacos, and a late party sipping on delicious CBD cocktails,” Mr. Pierce said. “I was in my happy place.”
Josh moved into the warehouse so he could work on his project full time, sleeping on a sleeping bag on the floor. But at the time there was no medical marijuana bill. There was only one constitutional statute, the one he operated on, that said one caregiver could grow six plants for one patient.
“It’s kind of crazy,” J. Austin said. “I’m the wallpaper for a Sundance party.”
She later read papers on the topic and then slowly got on board. It wasn’t like the family was oblivious to marijuana. “Josh definitely did pot growing up in high school,” Mrs. Fontenot said. “I knew he was doing it, but it wasn’t disruptive, and I was so busy having babies.”
The brothers were still focused on medical marijuana as a business , but that changed in August 2013 when CNN’s Sanjay Gupta did a special on their success with Charlotte. Fifteen thousand families reached out to them in the next month, they said, and the company decided to focus on CBD. Charlotte’s Web was born.
Josh responded by starting the first 501c4 in Colorado to lobby for a medical marijuana bill. Luckily for him, Bill 10-1284 passed in 2010, helping pave the way for regulated medical marijuana sales.
Kristi Mahaffey met Rich Stanley through a mutual friend. They were students at Kansas State University and married less than a year from the date they met. “He was very charming and very, very charismatic,” she said. “He kind of had this Tom Selleck look that was hard not to fall for.”
This leading CBD company is a family affair.