Ian James founded The Ideation Lab, LLC, and provides the Company's strategic vision, and development leadership in mergers and acquisitions, and analysis for the Company. Ian proven leadership relies upon his 37 years of expertise in heavily regulated industries to forge and maintain successful and profitable business relationships.
He has raised roughly $100M in capital investment for various operations since 2014. From 2018 through 2019, he helped spearhead a reverse triangular merger with a sub-$90M Nasdaq company in which a vertical CBD company, SanaMundi, sought to go public. The COVID-19 Pandemic sidelined the "go public" plan. He served as the Chairman of a Colorado Board of a Hemp Genetic Company and is a leader in the Hemp industry for his work on regulatory structures, labeling, and testing requirements.
Believing in strong alliances, he led The Ideation Lab and its Affiliated Companies to become the first Hemp manufacturing companies to join the National Association of Manufacturing. Because of his experience in state matters, Politico Magazine named Ian one of the United States' most influential political thought leaders.
Before The Jordre Well, The Ideation Lab, and SanaMundi, Ian ran a successful marketing and advocacy firm that monetized ballot issues. Ian oversaw the gathering of nearly seven million signatures to place the problems before voters. At that time, his firm developed the blueprint to amend the Ohio Constitution for casino gaming and reform cannabis laws. He worked on various other high-profile social justice and ballot issues, including protecting voting rights, employment rights, and civil rights issues.
He also served in numerous governmental offices and as a corporate executive for Merv Griffin's Players International in Illinois, Louisiana, Missouri, and Nevada. His knowledge of heavily regulated industries and his ability to navigate corporate relations and public advocacy allowed him to provide strategic guidance through countless efforts, which led The Ohio Magazine to acknowledge him as one of Ohio's "brightest political strategists." Ian's extensive branding and media relations were evident on CBS and NBC Evening News, the Today Show, Rolling Stone Magazine, New York Times, LA Times, U.S. News and World Reports, The Guardian, Time Magazine, Politico Magazine, and hundreds of other publications worldwide.
Stephen is leading the charge by directing The Jordre Well and The Ideation Lab's Brand Portfolio. Responsible for the ideation, creation, and development of brand ethos, product development, and leading the strategy surrounding the launching of and growth of the individual product lines. Aside from merchandising for brands like R.H., J Crew, and Kate Spade, Stephen's background in both Human Resources and Operations gives him the ability to connect and lead the right people to grow the brand. This experience further permits him to maintain an intimate knowledge of supply chain logistics to hit targets quickly. Excited for the opportunity to take this passion across multiple categories and build the first legitimate Cannabis lifestyle brand with product lines acutely focused on the Canna-Curious, discerning luxury Wellness consumer.
As a thought leader in the space, Stephen has spoken at intimate gatherings for the press and C-Suite panels to discuss the global cannabis trend and how the different international markets will embrace and amplify the space. Looking at each product focusing on unique end-user experience then reverse engineering that moment of engagement back down to the creativity that will fill that need.
Stephen provides the leadership for new and emerging markets by considering what the next 3-5-10 years from now could look like for the market and setting the foundation for a brand to meet expectations and goals.
Stephen is a Board member at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort Board, a founding member of the Franklin County Child Task Force, an avid endurance athlete having completed four 70.3 Half Ironman Triathlons, and a combined total of more than 35 Full + Half marathons. His primary joys are traveling and spending time with his family, and being the best uncle and godfather.
Over the coming weeks, we will announce our Advisory Board.
Christopher Brown has spent his career in executive leadership roles in the distribution and supply chain industry, servicing independent retailers, regional grocery chains, and more. Brown currently runs CB, LLC, a consulting company working with leading private equity firms, retailers, and wholesalers. Prior to forming CB, LLC, Brow
Christopher Brown has spent his career in executive leadership roles in the distribution and supply chain industry, servicing independent retailers, regional grocery chains, and more. Brown currently runs CB, LLC, a consulting company working with leading private equity firms, retailers, and wholesalers. Prior to forming CB, LLC, Brown spent 4 years as Senior Vice Price of Independent Sales at C&S Wholesale Grocers (“C&S”), the largest wholesale grocery supplier in the United States. Prior to his role at C&S, Brown spent 11 years as EVP of Procurement/Merchandising and EVP of Food Distribution, before being named President and Chief Operating Officer of the Nash Finch Company, now a part of SpartanNash Co. (NASDAQ: SPTN) via merger. Earlier in his career, Brown was Executive Vice President of Procurement for Richfoods Holdings, Inc. (formerly NYSE: RFH) up until it was acquired by Supervalu Inc. (formerly NYSE: SVU), which is now a part of United Natural Foods Inc. (NYSE: UNFI) via acquisition. Brown earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Marketing from Winona State University.
“It is incredibly exciting to be joining an innovative company like The Ideation Lab with such a strong dedication to branding, consistency, and quality,” commented Brown. “In my decades of experience within the food and beverage distribution industry, I can confidently assert that the common denominators of success in this space are those three things.”
Melisse Gelula has spent her career in entrepreneurial and executive leadership roles in the media and wellness industry, most recently Co-Founding and serving as Chief Creative Officer for Well+Good, which was acquired by Leaf Group Ltd. (NYSE: LEAF) in 2018. Gelula was named one of the 9 Most Creative Entrepreneurs by Inc Magazine and o
Melisse Gelula has spent her career in entrepreneurial and executive leadership roles in the media and wellness industry, most recently Co-Founding and serving as Chief Creative Officer for Well+Good, which was acquired by Leaf Group Ltd. (NYSE: LEAF) in 2018. Gelula was named one of the 9 Most Creative Entrepreneurs by Inc Magazine and one of 10 Writers and Editors Who Are Changing the National Conversation by Adweek (2018). She led her company to win several Webby Awards and a Fast Company Innovation Award, before moving on from her company. Gelula is also the former editor-in-chief of SpaFinderLifestyle.com, beauty director at Luxury SpaFinder Magazine, and travel editor at Fodor’s Travel Publications. She frequently speaks about wellness and media trends at conferences including Create & Cultivate, Fast Company’s Innovation Festival, Foundermade, Global Wellness Summit, and more, and has shared her thought-leadership and expertise with CBS This Morning, WSJ, The New York Times, and more. Gelula earned an MA from the University of Toronto and has completed six years of training as a psychoanalyst. When she is not working, she and her wife can be found enjoying the natural beauty of the Catskills.
“I’m thrilled to be joining a rapidly growing company like The Ideation Lab with such a strong pipeline of functional food and beverage brands,” commented Gelula. “Wellness products without functionality are not wellness products at all. In applying my years of experience within the wellness space to The Ideation Lab, I’m excited to improve the experience for consumers in finding products that can truly enhance their lives.”
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