Aleafia Boosts Bench Strength of Executive Team to Support Expansion Goals
TORONTO, April 24, 2018 /CNW/ – Aleafia Health Inc. (TSXV: ALEF; OTC: CAMDF) (“Aleafia Health”) today announced changes to its executive team that will better position the vertically integrated medical cannabis company to meet its ambitious growth goals.
Changes to the leadership include:
- The appointment of The Honourable Dr. Gary Goodyear as President, Clinic Operations, in lieu of his serving on the board.
- The appointment of Dr. Michael Verbora as Chief Medical Officer in addition to his serving on the board and audit committee.
- The appointment of Mr. Mark J. Sandler, Senior criminal and regulatory lawyer as Aleafia Director, filling the vacancy on the Board of Directors left by Dr. Goodyear.
- The appointment of Don Hunter as Vice-President, Business Development.
“In addition to being one of Canada’s few vertically integrated medical cannabis companies, we believe that the experienced and ethical leadership team is one of our organization’s defining strengths,” said Aleafia Executive Chairman Julian Fantino. “We’re confident that appointing Dr. Goodyear to lead our clinic operational side, and Mr. Sandler to our Board of Directors, will further enhance our competitive advantage in the medical cannabis space.”
The company leadership welcomes the fact that the Honourable Dr. Gary Goodyear, who served in two federal cabinet-level portfolios, also boasts experience developing his own successful franchised model for healthcare treatment. The company leadership is also confident in the expertise and leadership of Dr. Verbora to oversee all matters pertaining to cannabinoid medicine within the organization. Additionally, the Aleafia leadership is extremely pleased to add a legal expert of Mr. Sandler’s calibre to the Aleafia Board as an independent director.
Aleafia believes that coming on the heels of its recent appointment of a new Head Horticulturalist today’s announcement further demonstrates the remarkable bench strength of the Aleafia executive team. This company further believes that this change—combined with the expanding network of clinics and research opportunities, and the expanding Health Canada LP facility that is expected to yield its first harvest in the next five weeks—puts the company in a strong position to meet its ambitious expansion goals in the coming months and years.
Furthermore, the Company announces that Mr. John Philpott will no longer be serving as Executive Vice President or in an operational capacity with the Company, but he will remain as a director. Raf Souccar will continue to serve as Chief Executive Officer but not as President.
The company granted an aggregate of 2,350,000 stock options pursuant to its stock option plan as follows: 1,000,000 to Mr. Hunter at a price of $0.63, 850,000 to Dr. Verbora and 500,000 to Mr. Sandler at a price of $0.60. Options granted to Mr. Hunter vest over a two year period every 6 months while options granted to Dr. Verbora and Mr. Sandler vest quarterly over a one year period. All options have a five year term.
The Honourable Dr. Gary Goodyear
“Our twenty-two clinics, and the dedicated physicians and support staff who operate them, are critical to the success of Aleafia Health,” said Dr. Goodyear. “I look forward to working with my new team and taking the patient-focused, physician-led, research-driven model of operations through the next phase of expansion in the coming months and years.”
Mr. Mark J. Sandler
“Even since my consultancy with Health Canada’s Drug Strategy and Controlled Substances Programme, I have understood that cannabinoid medicine—when managed correctly— can bring profound improvements to the quality of life for those in need,” said Mr. Sandler. “I’m delighted to join the Board of Directors of Aleafia Health because this organization is both ethically sound and competitively positioned for success.”
Dr. Michael Verbora
“I’m very excited to continue advancing the patient care and the science of cannabinoid medicine in this new role as Chief Medical Officer,” said Dr. Michael Verbora. “I am humbled by the Board’s confidence in my leadership, and grateful to our outstanding team of dedicated medical practitioners across our clinic network and the exceptional work they do every day in support of our many patients.”
Mr. Don Hunter
“It’s a pleasure to be part of this strong, professional, ethical team,” said Mr. Hunter. “It’s an exciting time to be in business development within the medical cannabis industry, and I’m thrilled be able to work on increasing opportunities for the company in a way that can take it to a whole new level.”
The Honourable Dr. Gary Goodyear
The Honourable Dr. Gary Goodyear is a Doctor of Chiropractic, has been at the forefront of health care, business and government. After graduating from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College, he developed a successful franchised model for the treatment and management of non-head injuries from motor vehicle accidents, and practiced for 20 years until his election to Parliament in 2004. He served as Canada’s Minister of State, Science and Technology as well as Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency, Southern Ontario, with a dual focus on enriching Canada’s innovation and research agenda. Dr. Goodyear served as a Director for Aleafia before taking on the role of President, Clinic Operations in 2018.
Mr. Mark J. Sandler
Mr. Sandler has been a member of the Ontario bar for over 38 years. He is the senior partner of Cooper, Sandler, Shime & Bergman LLP, and practices as an appellate and trial lawyer in criminal and regulatory matters. He served as an elected Bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the legal profession’s governing body, for three terms (just under 12 years), and chaired its Appeal Panel and Tribunal Committee. He is an elected Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and is listed as one of Canada’s best lawyers in a number of publications. From 2006 to 2014, he was a member of the Board (a “trustee”) of the Law Foundation of Ontario and then its Chair from 2009 to 2014. He was an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School for 14 years, and lectures extensively to prosecutors, defence counsel, judges, Boards and agencies on a variety of topics, including, professional ethics and responsibilities, criminal and regulatory law. He has been consulted internationally (including by two governments) on law reform and has served as counsel or consultant to 12 public inquiries or systemic reviews, including a 2003-2004 review for the Minister of Health and Health Canada, Drug Strategy and Controlled Substances Programme of existing medical marihuana regulations and policies, and a review for Health Canada of the accuracy of certificates of drug analysis. He is the recipient of the G. Arthur Martin Medal for his outstanding contributions to criminal justice in Canada.
A full biography is available on the Cooper, Sandler, Shime and Bergman LLP website.
Dr. Michael Verbora
Dr. Michael Verbora earned an MBA from the University of Windsor’s Odette School of Business in 2009 and an M.D. from Schulich School of Medicine at Western University in 2013, before entering a Family Practice residency at the University of Toronto. A member of the Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids, Doctors for Responsible Access and the Canadian Pain Society, he has completed over 2,000 cannabinoid therapy consultations, and has presented many talks in community and hospital settings while serving as student health physician at Seneca College and Medical Director, Canabo Medical Clinic. Dr. Verbora was recently named an Assistant Professor at McMaster Medical School.
Mr. Don Hunter
Don obtained one of the first Health Canada licenses to grow and sell commercial hemp, medical cannabis’ sister plant (without THC). An industry pioneer, he worked with the National Research Council to create applications for hemp fiber as well as turning the seed oil into food products. He later created his own multidisciplinary healthcare model that has operated for the last decade. In 2016, Don joined Canabo Medical Corp. as its National Manager of Educators and Licensed Producer Relations, after which he significantly increased Canabo’s revenue stream. He launched key research partnerships dealing with medical cannabis as an alternative treatment for numerous chronic illnesses as well as its quality of life improvement, socio-economic impact, pharmaceutical reduction and patient relief for specific chronic issues such as sleep, PTSD, cancer, arthritis, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. He joined the Aleafia team as part its vertical integration with Canabo, and will continue to put his skills, knowledge and experience to excellent use as Vice President, Business Development.
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About Aleafia Health Inc.:
Aleafia is a leading, vertically integrated medical cannabis company with a unique focus on delivering quality patient care from “seed” to “sale.” Aleafia is uniquely positioned with a singular focus on the medical cannabis market. The company operates the largest brick and mortar medicinal cannabis clinic network in Canada under the Canabo Medical Clinic brand, which is staffed by licensed, practicing physicians. Aleafia has obtained over 50,000 unique patients and maintains the largest medical cannabis patient data set in Canada. Aleafia’s state of the art production facilities will allow for the production of high- quality strains at low cost. Aleafia’s production will focus on securing the highest- quality medicinal product for its growing patient base.
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FORWARD LOOKING INFORMATION
This press release contains forward-looking statements and information that are based on the beliefs of management and reflect the Company’s current expectations. When used in this press release, the words “estimate”, “project”, “belief”, “anticipate”, “intend”, “expect”, “plan”, “predict”, “may” or “should” and the negative of these words or such variations thereon or comparable terminology are intended to identify forward-looking statements and information. The forward-looking statements and information in this press release includes information relating to the implementation of Aleafia Health’s business plan. Such statements and information reflect the current view of the Company with respect to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in those forward-looking statements and information.
By their nature, forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or other future events, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, among others, the following risks: risks associated with the implementation of Aleafia Health’s business plan and matters relating thereto, risks associated with the cannabis industry, competition, regulatory change, the need for additional financing, reliance on key personnel, the potential for conflicts of interest among certain officers or directors, and the volatility of the Company’s common share price and volume. Forward-looking statements are made based on management’s beliefs, estimates and opinions on the date that statements are made and the Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if these beliefs, estimates and opinions or other circumstances should change. Investors are cautioned against attributing undue certainty to forward-looking statements.