The Voice of Business for Florida’s Medical Marijuana Industry
About Us 2015-02-20T20:12:25+00:00
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Overview

The Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida (MMBAFL) was founded in 2014 as a membership organization to protect and promote a rational and compassionate approach to Florida’s emerging medical marijuana regulatory framework, serve as a responsible business resource for policy makers, support and grow business opportunities for the emerging medical marijuana industry, all while committing to protect the rights and dignity of medical marijuana patients and their families.

The passage by the Florida Legislature of SB 1030, known as the “Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act of 2014” or commonly referred to as the “Charlotte’s Web” bill, created the need for a the Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida (MMBAFL), focused on providing timely, accurate and valuable information to businesses, policymakers, patients and other stakeholders who have an interest in being involved in the responsible and safe growth of the industry. The MMBAFL is designed as a not for profit membership association.

The passage of Amendment 2, relating to “Compassionate Use of Medical Marijuana”, in November 2016 will add to the need to ensure a professional business association is directly involved with policy makers in the development of regulatory rules and potential future legislation to ensure that any dispensary network, patient registry, testing regime, and quality control guidelines serve the needs of patients, the health care community and medical marijuana business providers and suppliers.

The MMBAFL is a marijuana trade association representing businesses and individuals in Florida. MMBAFL supports a vision in which local, state, and federal laws protect marijuana businesses, and patients and customers are able to receive safe access to quality medicine and products.

Founded by Dr. Jeffrey Sharkey, a leading policy consultant on medical and recreational cannabis policies in states across the U.S., the MMBAFL is designed to create a safe, accessible and affordable regulatory and business environment for cannabis in Florida.

About

The Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida (MMBAFL) was founded in 2014 as a membership organization to protect and promote a rational and compassionate approach to Florida’s emerging medical marijuana regulatory framework, serve as a responsible business resource for policy makers, support and grow business opportunities for the emerging medical marijuana industry, all while committing to protect the rights and dignity of medical marijuana patients and their families.

Our Values

To promote the growth of a responsible and safely regulated cannabis industry and work for a favorable social, economic, and legal environment for our industry in the state of Florida.

Our Mission

The Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida was founded on the principle of strength in numbers. The thousands of Florida businesses involved in our state-legal cannabis industry represent a significant economic force. As the industry’s only state trade association, MMBAF works everyday to ensure our burgeoning business sector is represented in a professional and coordinated way at the state level.

Leadership

The organization was established by Dr. Jeffrey Sharkey and a seasoned team of Tallahassee, Florida-based public policy and business consulting professionals along with a core group of interested Medical Marijuana stakeholders committed to the mission of the organization. The organization team has extensive experience with both the legislative and constitutional referendum initiatives as well as the state agencies responsible for implementing the bills.

MMBAFL management and board leadership will advocate for sensible medical marijuana policy in every major venue.

Dr. Jeffrey Sharkey
President
jeffrey@mmbafl.com

Taylor Patrick Biehl
Policy Director
taylor@mmbafl.com

106 E. College Avenue, Suite 640
Tallahassee, FL 32301
Ph: 850-224-1925

Dr. Jeffrey Sharkey

Dr. Jeffrey Sharkey is Managing Partner of the firm with over 25 years of lobbying experience in addition to 6 years of employment at senior positions in the Executive and Legislative branches of Florida Government. His lobbying expertise includes advanced technologies, education, intermodal transportation, economic development, insurance, entertainment, local government infrastructure funding, growth management, public finance, and ad valorem taxation.

Dr. Sharkey is widely known for his extensive knowledge of the legislative process, in particular the finance and tax and appropriations processes. With over two decades of government relations, public affairs and business consulting under his belt, he has built a network of trusted relationships throughout the highest levels of state government. His entrepreneurial approach to problem solving, high ethical standards and strong commitment to professionalism, coupled with his creative approach to problem solving and dedication to keeping his client’s interests at the forefront of the firm’s activities, have made him one of the most highly regarded lobbyist in Florida. He and the professionals in his firm believe that accomplishing client’s goals is the result of detailed research, strategic planning, clear communication, hard work and unrelenting determination to succeed.

In addition, Dr. Sharkey has been actively involved in statewide issue campaigns for over twenty years, providing him rare insight into the politics and an ability to shape successful community development projects. He has been successful in creating, mobilizing and evaluating public policy issues and trends to position his clients to prepare and take advantage of new challenges and opportunities occurring in the arenas of state and local governments. He is ultimately familiar with the dynamics that are created when local, state and national politics intersect with the desire to shape public policy in the local, Legislative or Executive branches of government.

Dr. Sharkey has held a variety of positions in state government prior to launching his public policy advocacy career. He has been Director of International Education for the State of Florida, Special Advisor to the Governor for International Affairs, and Director of the Florida Hemispheric Policy Studies Center. He began his professional career as a teacher and school administrator and has worked in England, Thailand, Latin America and in other parts of the world as a consultant for various international agencies.

In addition, Dr. Sharkey is an entreprenuer and owns a number of successful businesses. He is native of Minnesota, he holds a B.S. degree in English, a M.Ed. in Educational Research from the University of MN, a M.S. in Sociology and Economics and a Ph.D. from Florida State University in Educational Policy Foundations and International Development.

Taylor Patrick Biehl

Taylor Patrick Biehl is the Policy Director for the MMBAFL. A Brevard County native, Mr. Biehl received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Florida. After graduation, he served as the Special Projects Coordinator to Public Concepts, LLC, conducting detailed analysis of precincts and voter trends, assisting in the development of political messages, and assisting on the successful campaign of Ronda Storms for State Senator. Mr. Biehl has served as the Special Assistant to State Senator Mike Haridopolos and afterward served as the Director of Governmental Affairs for the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association where he led a successful lobbying campaign implementing the association’s agenda. Taylor has represented the interests of the largest Fortune 500 companies, including UPS, Tenet Healthcare, Kaplan (a subsidiary of the Washington Post), and Pearson Education.

Upon becoming President of the Senate, Mike Haridopolos tapped Mr. Biehl to assist with policy and constituent issues. Subsequently, Taylor joined the Senate Community Affairs Committee, where he served as an analyst. With 10 years of direct legislative experience with major appropriations issues and a concentrated focus on local governance, property taxation, and agency regulation issues, he has proven himself to be a tireless advocate for client’s interest. In addition to legislative issues management, he has developed excellent relations with the state agency management leadership and interfaces regularly with the agency Secretaries to ensure that clients have access to top decision makers. Mr. Biehl is responsible for mobilizing legislation and communicating with legislators and agency representatives on the needs of our members.

What We Do

MMBAFL is focused on the following:

  • Provide a forum for policymakers, citizens, businesses and families to exchange ideas, share research and promote an efficient, rational and safe delivery system for the compassionate use of Medical Marijuana.
  • Educate policymakers on the best course of action for creating a rational and market based statutory and regulatory structure  that works for patients and providers’
  • Provide businesses and vendors with opportunities to network and identify new opportunities in the emerging industry.

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JOIN US! BECOME A MEMBER TODAY!

Florida’s political process moves quickly. With the added benefit of our Tallahassee presence, we interact with policymakers and legislative staff on a daily basis to ensure our members’ voices are heard. We work daily to act as your eyes, ears and voice on issues affecting the cannabis industry throughout the Sunshine State.

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