Social Equity,Diversity, and Activism
Erik Range provides Higher Yields Consulting (HYC) clients with leadership, support and expertise specific to the application process for social equity programming. Erik enhances community development, social impact initiatives and engagement by facilitating educational and training opportunities for cannabis businesses specific to their goals and capacity. These opportunities allow businesses to better understand, embrace and provide social equity initiatives to propel cannabis community progress. He collaborates with lawmakers and stakeholders to create and pass statutes that promote full participation for all people in the cannabis industry to have equal opportunities. Erik works tirelessly to build bridges between the industry and communities disproportionately impacted by prohibition. He advises business owners on their inclusive marketing strategies to help capture untapped market share and demonstrate an openness toward different cultures, ethnicities, races and social groups. Erik is looking forward to disrupting unproductive circular pathways and forging new routes with HYC.
Erik finds that education and perseverance is the driving force to creating change. Without new thoughts, progressive thinking and a thoughtful approach to taking action, change cannot happen. Experience is imperative to understanding and implementing change as well. As a previous director of the Upward Bound Programs (a program that prepares low income and first generation high school students for college success) and Coordinator of Multi-Cultural and Support Services (a service devoted to celebrating and empowering diverse communities) at the University of Central Florida, Erik is well versed in both education and experience. Erik can develop programming and guidelines to initiate social equity changes in all forums, generalizing these skills to the specificity of the cannabis market. Erik has a business mindset and comes to HYC with experience in workforce development and training, cannabis business development and license application counseling.
Erik is passionate about investing in his community. He works to find creative solutions to roadblocks that wouldn’t otherwise be viewed as an opportunity. He prides himself on helping people find resources that ultimately empower them to advance themselves and their community. Erik believes the cannabis plant is inclusive in its ability to positively impact the lives of most people and that everyone has a right to the quality of life that the plant offers regardless of race, color, socioeconomic status and/or abilities. Erik has demonstrated his commitment to breaking down barriers through his accomplished work within the cannabis industry. Erik co-founded ART420 LLC, a company that prides itself in providing high quality art developed by those who have been touched and helped by cannabis. Through ART420 he challenges the negative imagery of cannabis that is often portrayed by the media to highlight the virtue that can occur. One of the premier artists, diagnosed with a movement disorder, would not be able to produce work if he was not legally provided with cannabis. ART420 gives patients and consumers a voice, outlet and a safe environment to artistically express themselves while also decreasing negative cannabis stereotypes. Erik continues to serve on several boards as board chair that focus on public policy, business and community development, medical access, social justice, education and youth services and enrichment. As Board Chair of Minorities 4 Medical Marijuana (MM4M), an organization who strives for a culturally inclusive environment, Erik was able to lobby for inclusion of “diversity language” in Florida. This ultimately forged the pathway for other states to adopt this inclusive language. With Erik’s leadership, MM4M has expanded into twenty-four states and two countries. Erik lobbied for and obtained authorization for cannabis and hemp research programs. The organization was awarded the Industry Organization of the Year Award from Clover Leaf’s Cannabis Business Awards in both 2018 and 2019. In 2019, he was also named #3 on a list of Outstanding Black & Hispanic Men Leading in Cannabis and has been appointed to several committees that strive to advance the hemp and cannabis industry. Some of these include Florida’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Hemp Advisory Committee and NECANN (a multi-state cannabis conference company)
Of all his passions, Erik is most honored to be a husband and father and finds that he lives his life to best serve his family. From leaving corporate America to homeschooling their children, Erik and his wife have made every effort to make the best decisions for their family. Erik is looking forward to shaping change and working with HYC.