DENVER (AP) — When Tim Cullen was opening his first marijuana business four years ago, the high school biology teacher turned pot entrepreneur struggled to get resumes and references from job applicants.
“Everyone’s experience was on the black market,” Cullen said. Now, he said, “it’s come out of the closet.”
Out of the closet, down the street and around the corner. That’s where the line of hopefuls stretched Thursday outside a central Denver office building that was hosting a marijuana industry job fair.
Cullen, who owns two retail marijuana shops and is a partner in a company that makes hash oil and another that makes vaporizers, was among representatives from about a dozen businesses reviewing applications.
O.penVAPE, Cullen’s vaporizers company, organized the fair to meet its own growing staffing needs and help others in the industry, said company spokesman Todd Mitchem.
Voters in Colorado and Washington approved sales of marijuana for recreational use in 2012, and recreational sales began first in Colorado, in January. This week, in the world’s first such accounting, the Colorado Department of Revenue reported the state made roughly $2 million in marijuana taxes in January; that is expected to grow as more retailers are licensed.
Among the employers at Thursday’s job fair was a tour company looking for guides to help pot tourists navigate Colorado’s newest industry. Hemp Temps, a specialist staffing agency, and Medicine Man, a dispensary, were also hunting for candidates. Job descriptions included bud tender, sales representative and web designer.
Organizers said they had heard beforehand from more than 600 jobseekers who planned to attend. Mitchem said the company may need a bigger venue for the next fair, which he said is already in the works.
Ian Howe, among the jobseekers in line on Thursday, said he was a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in New York, and hoped to find work with a company that infuses marijuana into foods, or try his hand at growing marijuana.
Howe, 23, said he moved to Colorado just 3 1/2 weeks ago, and found the state a good fit.
“I’ve always been an outdoorsy guy, and I’ve always liked to smoke weed,” he said.
Near Howe in line, Michael Rubens and Tim Miller chatted about what they hoped to get out of the fair. Rubens said he wanted to find a business that might want to exploit his ideas for marijuana ice cream.
Miller said he was an IT financial specialist who could offer the marijuana industry expertise on banking. The federal government earlier this year issued guidance for banks that at least recognizes that many operate in states where marijuana sales are legal. It did not, however, clarify how banks can do business with pot shops and stay on the right side of federal law, which outlaws the drug.
At the fair, Miller and Rubens compared notes about job hunting. Miller had 15 resumes in his briefcase. Rubens said with a laugh that he had “20 — I’m more prepared.”
Like BlackAmericaWeb.com on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
1 of 31
2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
2 of 31
3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
3 of 31
4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
4 of 31
5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
5 of 31
6 of 31
7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
7 of 31
8 of 31
9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
9 of 31
10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
10 of 31
11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
11 of 31
12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
12 of 31
13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
13 of 31
14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
14 of 31
15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
15 of 31
16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
16 of 31
17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
17 of 31
18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
18 of 31
19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
19 of 31
20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
20 of 31
21. Bae #retailtherapy
21 of 31
22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
22 of 31
23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
23 of 31
24. Diggy Simmons
24 of 31
25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
25 of 31
26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
26 of 31
27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
27 of 31
28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
28 of 31
29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
29 of 31
30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
30 of 31
31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
31 of 31