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Management Team

Aras Azadian, M.Mgmt

Chief Executive Officer

Utilizing his extensive senior management experience in both financial and bio-technology sectors, Aras co-founded Avicanna with the vision of establishing a bio-pharmaceutical company with a strict focus on medical and pharmaceutical applications of cannabinoids. His expertise experience in the biotechnology industry have been integral to Avicanna’s thought leadership pertaining to R&D and clinical development. Since 2016 Aras has successfully led a team of executives, scientists, and medical professionals across several countries with the vision of vertical integration and a strong company focus on quality controls, scientific vigour and competitive advantages. Aras holds a Bachelor of Economics degree from York University and an International master’s in management degree from EADA Business School in Barcelona, Spain.

Phillip Cardella, CPA, CA

Interim Chief Financial Officer

Joining the Company in 2021 as Senior Vice President of Finance, Phillip took over as Interim Chief Financial Officer in May 2022. He gained his experience at MNP LLP in the public company assurance group, where worked with new and young companies, managing, and advising them through go-public transactions and f financial reporting requirements. While at MNP, Phillip was audit lead for Avicanna from 2018-2020. He is applying this prior knowledge to ensuring accuracy and reliability of Avicanna’s financials and sound financial management.

Lucas Nosiglia, MFin

President, Avicanna LATAM

A seasoned entrepreneur and executive with experience across Europe, North America and South America, Lucas has been at the forefront of Avicanna’s Latin America (LATAM) operations since the company’s inception in 2016. His innovative and transformative approach in navigating the cannabis industry and his former involvement in management consulting, finance and health care have been invaluable in establishing and operating the company’s Colombian subsidiaries including two fully operational cultivation projects. Lucas’ experience from working at Deloitte along with his leadership values are at the core of his success in leading Avicanna’s largest teams. Lucas graduated with an Honours degree from Faculty of Economics of University of Buenos Aires and holds a Masters degree in Finance from EADA in Barcelona Spain.

Ivana Marić

Executive Vice President, Marketing

Leading the company’s marketing operations since inception, Ivana has championed the development, launch and management of all Avicanna’s brands and product lines globally. A trailblazer with significant experience in traditional and digital media platforms, advertising, brand development and awareness across several sectors, Ivana utilizes both her previous experience and her thorough comprehension of the evolving landscape of the cannabis industry, it’s trends and challenges.

Dr. Frantz Le Devedec, PhD

Executive Vice President, Research & Development

Dr. Le Devedec has over 15 years of experience in academic and industrial research in biomaterials, drug delivery platforms and purification processes of natural compounds applied to cancer therapies, pain management and infectious disease. With a strong background in biochemistry, he received his PhD in Physical Chemistry at Université de Montréal with honors and worked for Dr. Christine Allen’s Research Group (CARG) at the University of Toronto, leading several pharmaceutical projects for industrial partners and academic oriented research. He also worked at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre as a research associate where he developed new approaches for pancreatic cancer therapy. He is the first author of more than fifteen scientific publications, patents and presented in international conferences and universities. For the past 3 years, Frantz has been at the top of the R&D department of Avicanna Inc, where he has developed numerous advanced cannabinoid formulations (orals and topicals) now commercialized in North America, Latin America and finally put in place methodologies to purify cannabinoids from lab scale to industrial capacity in our cannabis cultivar in Colombia.

Stephen Kim

Chief Legal Officer & General Counsel – AVICANNA USA INC.

Stephen Kim is Chief Legal Officer & General Counsel – AVICANNA USA INC. and responsible for overseeing all legal and regulatory matters at a global level. Stephen has over twenty years of experience and is familiar with navigating the complex overlay of business, legal, regulatory, and policy considerations impacting biotech and pharmaceutical companies at various stages of product and company life cycle in the United States, Canada, and globally. Prior to Avicanna, Stephen held roles of increasing responsibility at Bayer, Celgene, and Indivior, and was a corporate associate with US and International law firms in New York and Toronto. Stephen received his US law degree from the University of Detroit Mercy (JD) and Canadian law degree from the University of Windsor (LLB).

Board of Directors

Dr. Chandra Panchal

Chair

Dr. Panchal has been the Chief Executive Officer of Axcelon Biopolymers Corp. since 2008, has authored over seventy scientific papers, holds several patents in oncology, diagnostics, biopolymers and microbiology, and is an Adjunct Professor in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering at the University of Western Ontario. Dr. Panchal currently sits on the board of directors of both an oncology company known as Medicenna Therapeutics Corp. (MDNA), and Canadian Oil Recovery and Remediation Inc. (CVR) as well as Pure Global Cannabis Inc. (PURE). Dr. Panchal holds a Master of Science degree in Molecular Biology and a Ph.D. in Biochemical Engineering from the University of Western Ontario.

Aras Azadian, M.Mgmt

Chief Executive Officer

Utilizing his extensive senior management experience in both financial and bio-technology sectors, Aras co-founded Avicanna with the vision of establishing a bio-pharmaceutical company with a strict focus on medical and pharmaceutical applications of cannabinoids. His expertise experience in the biotechnology industry have been integral to Avicanna’s thought leadership pertaining to R&D and clinical development. Since 2016 Aras has successfully led a team of executives, scientists, and medical professionals across several countries with the vision of vertical integration and a strong company focus on quality controls, scientific vigour and competitive advantages. Aras holds a Bachelor of Economics degree from York University and an International master’s in management degree from EADA Business School in Barcelona, Spain.

Dr. Assad J. Kazeminy

Director

Dr. Kazeminy is the founder and former President and CEO of Irvine Pharmaceutical Services Inc. and Avrio Biopharmaceutical LLC. Dr. Kazeminy received his doctorate degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences, graduate studies in Biochemistry and completed his post doctorate at the University of Southern California (USC) Medical School, Department of Pharmacology. Since January 2014, Dr. Kazeminy has been a member of the Chapman University School of Pharmacy (CUSP) Dean’s Professional Advisory Group, has served as a member of the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) Console of Experts 2000-2020 and has been awarded by United States Pharmacopeia a Winner for Innovative Responses to a Public Health Challenge.

Flavio Jose Zaclis

Director

Mr. Zaclis has more than 20 years of experience in private equity, venture capital and entrepreneurial projects. After completing several investment cycles, Mr. Zaclis founded Barn Investimentos in 2012, a venture capital investment boutique, dedicated to early-stage investments in the Brazilian and Latin American markets. Mr. Zaclis is a board member of several companies and has actively participated in initial public offerings, private placements, and merger and acquisition negotiations for portfolio companies. Mr. Zaclis is responsible for fundraising, deal execution, and team leadership at Barn Investimentos.

John McVicar

Director

McVicar is an experienced senior finance executive with more than 30 years of Canadian and international experience in both industry and professional services. Mr. McVicar retired as a Consulting Partner at Ernst & Young LLP (EY) where he focused on advising large corporations to drive operational excellence and to transform the performance of their finance organizations. Prior to EY, he spent 10 years in senior finance roles with several Canadian and U.S. public companies. Mr. McVicar brings significant international experience. During his career, he has served in roles based in Canada, South America, the U.S., Europe, Asia and Africa. Mr. McVicar is a CPA, CA and holds an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.

Eileen McCormack

Director

Eileen McCormack is an experienced senior marketing executive with more than 30 years of international experience in the bio-pharmaceutical industry. Ms. McCormack retired from AstraZeneca US where she led commercial and cross-functional teams responsible for launch planning and business development in the US market. Ms. McCormack has experience in bio-pharmaceutical product development, portfolio strategy in complex regulated environments and brings significant multi-market and international commercial experience. Ms. McCormack gives back to her community by having served on a number of national and Toronto-based non-for-profit boards over the last 10 years.
Giancarlo Davila Char

Director

Mr. Char has experience with sustainable and organic cultivation and production of industrial scale palm oil as well as other agriculture crops such as avocados and coffee beans. In 2017, Mr. Char went on to lead a branch of his family’s business which is dedicated to producing private label oils for national distribution in supermarkets across Colombia. This business unit reached USD$30,000,000 in sales in 2018. Mr. Char holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Northeastern University.

Business Advisory Board

Dr. Aline Masuda

Dr. Aline D. Masuda is currently an associate professor at EADA Business School in the department of Strategy Leadership and People. She also conducts research in motivation and leadership, employee attitudes, and flexible working arrangements across cultures.  She has published in journals such as Journal of Vocational Behavior, Academy of Management Discoveries, Applied Psychology an International Review. She holds Ph.D. and Master’s degrees in Industrial Organizational Psychology from the State University of New York-Albany and Missouri State University respectively. Previously, she was a senior project manager for International Survey Research, currently part of Towers Watson. She also worked at the workforce research and marketing intelligence departments at IBM and was a post-doctoral researcher at IESE Business School.

Sheldon Inwentash
Mr. Inwentash is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of ThreeD Capital Inc, a publicly traded venture capital fund with investments in disruptive technology sectors. Mr. Inwentash has more than 30 years of investing experience. He co-founded Visible Genetics, the first commercial pharmacogenomics company, in 1994 and exited in 2001 to Bayer. Through two decades leading Pinetree Capital, Mr. Inwentash created significant shareholder value through early investments in Queenston Mining (acquired by Osisko Mining Corp. for $550-million), Aurelian Resources (acquired by Kinross for $1.2-billion) and Gold Eagle Mines (acquired by Goldcorp for $1.5-billion) to name a few. Mr. Inwentash obtained his B.Comm from the University of Toronto and is a Chartered Professional Accountant. In 2007, he was an Ontario finalist for the Ernst & Young entrepreneur of the year award. In 2012, Sheldon received an honorary degree, doctor of laws (LL.D) from the University of Toronto for his valuable leadership as an entrepreneur, his philanthropy, and inspirational commitment to making a difference in the lives of children, youth and their families.
Al Harrington
Al Harrington is the CEO and Co-Founder of Viola, the premium Black-owned, multi-national cannabis company. Al’s entrepreneurial endeavors began during his NBA career when he strategically invested in startups across the cannabis industry. In 2011 he launched the Viola brand in Colorado after overseeing the carefully curated cultivation, extraction, and production processes. With the mission to provide opportunities and ownership for the Black community at the heart of the brand, Al uses his platform to advocate for a more equitable cannabis industry. He is a respected authority and a key advisor to those shaping cannabis legislation on both local and national levels.
Ori Tal
Ori Tal, founder and president of ESO Equity Group, is a venture capitalist with significant experience in various fields of real estate, agtech, bioanalytics, and biopharma. Ori leads all operational aspects of his diverse portfolio, identifies potential projects, and produces lucrative investment opportunities. Ori’s dedication and creativity have propelled the success of his wide-ranging investments and granted him positions on several business advisory boards and board of directors. Aside from his business ventures, Ori’s commitment to helping others is displayed through his charitable acts of donating to organizations involving medical research for sick children, supporting his local chess foundation, and hosting charity events. Additionally, Ori served as a naval officer in the Israeli Defense Forces and earned dual degrees in business economics and law from the University of Haifa, Israel.
Jason A. Hobson
Jason A. Hobson has worked as Chief Operating Officer and Secretary of Ei.Ventures since 2019, and as partner and secretary of Orthogonal Thinker since 2016. Mr. Hobson is also co-founder of Reinmkr Satsang a venture capital firm. Jason is an experienced operator, entrepreneur, and angel investor, and was a founding partner of the law firm of Hobson Bernardino + Davis LLP in 2009. He was previously in-house counsel for a national tax credit equity syndication firm which syndicated limited partnership interests and was also previously a senior attorney with the Century City and San Francisco offices of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP (formerly Pillsbury Madison & Sutro LLP), where he was a member of Corporate and Securities Practice Group. In 2012, Mr. Hobson was appointed to a state commission with an oversight function to the California Public Utilities Commission with respect to energy programs across the State of California. He is a graduate of the University of California Hastings College of Law, UCLA Anderson School of Management (Management Development for Entrepreneurs Certificate Program), Waseda University (Tokyo Japan) and California State University.