Caliva, the California-based marijuana company, has just taken on a new Chief Brand Strategist: Jay-Z.
How will Jay-Z support Caliva in their marijuana business?
Jay-Z will be assisting the company with marketing strategies and customer outreach, but he’ll also doing something rather unique: advocating for social justice issues surrounding the legalization of marijuana. In particular, he’ll be trying to stop the exclusion of people who were previously incarcerated from participating in the legal weed industry.
Jay-Z told RollingStone that his position will include “advocacy, job training and overall employee and workforce development.”
Interestingly, it was Jay-Z who sought out Caliva about this position. He was searching for a long time to find a company the legal marijuana business with whom he could collaborate. According to Jay-Z, Caliva had the most experience and credibility in the industry, and he felt confident that they’d be able to “create something amazing” together.
Caliva’s CEO Dennis O-Malley says the company was flattered by Jay-Z’s desire to work with them. “For [him] to seek out Caliva as a partner is humbling and confirms our mission of being the most trusted name in cannabis,” he said.
Jay-Z’s Experience in the Criminal Justice World
Jay-Z is likely to thrive in this position, as he’s no stranger to social justice issues. He’s previously done work in criminal justice reform, including acting as executive producer on a documentary series about Kalief Browder. Browder was a teenager who committed suicide after spending three years awaiting trial for petty theft in NYC’s prison Riker’s Island. Jay-Z also spoke out for Meek Mill, showing the world the serious issues with unfair sentencing and probation standards. When Meek Mill was released from prison, he joined Jay-Z in establishing the Reform Alliance, a foundation for criminal justice reform.
Jay-Z is among many rappers who have been entering the legal weed business. Others who are currently thriving in the business include Snoop Dog, 2 Chainz, Wiz Khalifa, Freddie Gibbs, Juicy J, and B-Real. Many of these rappers have their own dispensaries, while others partner with companies like Jay-Z is doing with Caliva.