Our Cannabis Public Relations Team

Our dedicated staff of Marijuana Communications Experts hail from various backgrounds that form a perfect constellation of skills for telling your story. We have lobbyists, activists, brand managers, non profit veterans, marketers, digital media experts, and more. Combined with our suite of proprietary databases, distribution channels, and scores of personal relationships with journalists forged over years of collaboration, there is no better firm representing members of the cannabis industry.

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Evan Nison, founder and owner. Evan Nison is the youngest member of the NORML Board of Directors and sits on the Board of Directors of Students for Sensible Drug Policy. He is the founder of the PR firm NisonCo, which connects leaders in the legal cannabis, medical marijuana, and hemp industries with influential journalists across the U.S. and world.

In 2010, while still a student, Evan took a semester off and moved to California to run the college outreach for the cannabis legalization ballot initiative Prop 19, which spanned over 40 actively managed schools state-wide. He was President of Ithaca Students for Sensible Drug Policy for 4 years, which under his leadership passed one of the first college policies in the country that equalized penalties for cannabis and alcohol on campus. He also received one of the pens used to sign the New York 911 Good Samaritan Law and New York medical marijuana law for his involvement in the passage of both bills.

During the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign Evan pressed Hillary Clinton for a firm answer on her support for legalization during a live town hall event on ABC’s Good Morning America.

More recently, as part of his mission to build socially driven businesses, he co-founded Whoopi & Maya, a women’s-focused cannabis brand with actress Whoopi Goldberg and fellow board member Rick Cusick. He then went on to co-found Emerald Farm Tours, a Northern California-based cannabis tour company to give the public a transparent hands-on view of the cannabis industry from seed to sale, and Bloody Good Vape & Smoke, a smoke shop in New Jersey he founded with a victim of cannabis prohibition who was held in jail for a year awaiting trial.

Evan has been mentioned in news sources such as the NY Times, CNN, Politico, USA Today, NBC New York, Bloomberg TV, Forbes, and has been profiled in The Cannabist, Civilized, Ithaca Times, Home News Tribune, The Marijuana Times, and the Sun Times. He also received the 2011 NORML Student Activism Award and High Times Freedom Fighter Award for his advocacy.

Beth Adan, marketing director. Beth has been in PR, marketing, and branding since 2011 and is a native of Washington State, which legalized adult recreational cannabis in 2012. She joined NisonCo in 2017 and has a long-term track record of proven PR wins, having secured high-level media coverage at both mainstream and cannabis-related outlets for her clients. Her knowledge and love of all things cannabis runs deep: off the clock, Beth is also the Founder & Editor of cannabis lifestyle publication, TokeTank.org. In addition to the cannabis industry, Beth participates in local food security and sustainable farming initiatives and has volunteered with Planned Parenthood and other women’s health organizations.

Zane Bader, client manager. Zane Bader sits on the Board of Directors for Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP), where he is on the executive committee and is the secretary for the Board. During his undergraduate studying Mathematics at the University of Georgia, he founded the Psychedelic Club at UGA, as well as helped lead his University’s SSDP chapter and local marijuana reform organization. He was previously employed at UGA’s Center for Research on Behavioral Health, where they conducted the largest and longest comprehensive study on drug abuse treatment within the United States. He has volunteered with DanceSafe since 2015, providing onsite harm reduction at music festivals.

Elana Cohen, client manager. Chicago born-and-bred Elana Cohen joined the NisonCo team in 2019. With extensive experience in the public relations industry, she has developed and executed numerous impactful corporate communication programs across a large variety of industries. She earned her B.A. in Public Relations from Hofstra University in 2012 and has been working in the PR field ever since. The cannabis industry is an exciting career for Elana on many levels: it’s an opportunity to participate in making history, it’s working with the nation’s premier and largest medical marijuana healthcare and lifestyle companies and, most importantly, Elana thrives on her accomplishments in helping to communicate the benefits of cannabis. She has made a personal commitment to be an instrumental and educational voice for cannabis patients, advocates, and industry players everywhere. She is a member of Women In PR, the local Chicago chapter of NORML, and The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, reading, writing and crafting and playing with her puppies.

Megan Cunningham, client manager. Megan joined the NisonCo team in 2019 and has nearly a decade of experience in PR and marketing, with a focus on managing cannabis and consumer housewares brands. She holds a B.S. in Communication from Endicott College and belonged to the internationally recognized communication honor society, Lambda Pi Eta. Megan is passionate about destigmatizing cannabis and highlighting the importance of equity in the industry, as well as how the plant’s massive benefits can be part of modern life. She specializes in identifying and building significant relationships and is skilled in providing innovative, strategic solutions in a swift manner. Megan strives to bring a fresh perspective and energy to client accounts and her day-to-day responsibilities. Her love for communication reaches beyond the NisonCo office to the yoga studio as she is also a registered 200-hour yoga teacher. When Megan’s not working or teaching, you’ll find her practicing yoga, hanging out with her pug, traveling to new places, scoring unique finds at consignment stores, demolishing veggie burritos, and vibing out to live music.

Rich DiGregorio, account management director. Rich DiGregorio has more than 10 years experience in advertising and digital marketing with a focus on marketing analytics and sales strategy. Prior to joining NisonCo, Rich helped secure millions in revenue for a number of ad tech companies and developed high-level relationships with agencies serving some of the most prominent CPG, Telecom and Lifestyle brands. Rich joined NisonCo in 2016 after deciding to move into a more socially engaged industry and promote cannabis advocacy. He is also an active member of the New York City music community where he has helped raise thousands in funding for events and festivals, performed on stage alongside notable artists such as Sharon Van Etten and Walter Schreifels (Quicksand, Gorilla Biscuits), and is credited as a drummer on dozens of recordings. When he’s not in the office you can likely find him behind a drum kit in any number of venues in the greater Brooklyn/NYC area.

Tori Gates, operations manager. Tori Gates has worked in nonprofit management and operations with a focus on drug policy and money in politics for the previous seven years. While at Ithaca College studying Marketing and Psychology she was the president of the college’s Student’s for Sensible Drug Policy chapter focusing on public education with programs like Just Say Know and Know Your Rights in partnership with campus public safety and administration. After college she has worked on leading field and political operations for city and statewide money in politics, voting reform, and legalization ballot initiatives in South Dakota and Colorado. Tori began working for NisonCo in 2017 when she moved to Colorado from Massachusetts. When she’s not running operations and business development you’ll find her ripping down the ski slopes, hiking the wilderness, or enjoying the Rocky Mountain high.

Raquel Heras, pitcher. Raquel began at NisonCo in 2015 as an intern and joined the team full-time in 2019. She completed her B.A. in Political Science from the University at Albany. In 2014, Raquel founded and became president of the Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) Chapter at the University at Albany. The chapter was awarded the Justice Award in 2017 by the university for its work in drug policy reform. When she’s not working, you can find Raquel painting, reading, and hiking.

Madison McCorquodale, content manager. Madison joined the team in 2018 and has a B.A. in Communication, a Minor in Business, and Certificate in Strategic Communication from Texas A&M University. Madison maintains a focus on strategic communication which has helped build her already extensive portfolio. She has been actively engaged in social media since 2009 and as a result has gained hands-on experience for effective social media strategies and execution, both for personal and business accounts. Her media relations accomplishments coupled with her passion for writing and telling stories has made her a great asset to the team. When she’s not working, you can find her playing with her dogs, cooking, writing, or designing in her spare time.

Marisa Rincon, business development. Marisa joined the NisonCo team in 2019. She has a B.A. in Business Administration with emphases in Marketing and Operations Management from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Marisa started in the cannabis industry via a college internship and fell in love with the passion and dedication of the community. She comes from a strong branding strategy and digital marketing background and enjoys applying that knowledge to her business development role. When she’s not working, you’ll find her walking her taking pictures of her pup, cooking, going to concerts and breaking it down on a dance floor.

Brian Sonenstein, pitching director. Brian Sonenstein joined NisonCo in 2015. He has worked in media and advocacy since 2009. He was the associate publisher and director of advocacy at the political website Firedoglake.com, where he worked on and managed the Just Say Now marijuana legalization campaign. Just Say Now garnered over 2.5 million followers and helped engage and register thousands of voters on cannabis legalization and medical marijuana campaigns in California, Colorado, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Washington, Oregon, and other states. He is a co-founder and editor of Shadowproof.com, a reader-supported news outlet, where he reports on incarceration.

Lucas Wentworth, client manager. Lucas Wentworth joined the team at NisonCo in 2018. He studied English and Professional Writing at King’s College and comes from a strong background in various types of writing, editing, social media marketing, and strategic communication. Aside from his obvious passion for cannabis legalization and amnesty, Lucas has been a lifelong advocate for incarcerated, homeless, and trafficked individuals. He has volunteered and interned in numerous shelters, kitchens, and prison book programs. While in college, he compiled a comprehensive database of resources and shelters in all 50 states for people experiencing human trafficking. He is currently located in Buffalo, NY and involved in the local Western New York chapter of NORML as well as Food Not Bombs.