Urbn Leaf was founded in 2017 in San Diego by cannabis entrepreneur and industry pioneer Will Senn. Named one of the top 100 most influential people in the cannabis industry by High Times, Senn has been on a mission to shatter the stigma around cannabis by creating safe, upscale, and comfortable retail spaces that are easily accessible to medical and adult-use guests.
Prior to launching Urbn Leaf, Will was involved in several cannabis ventures over the last 16 years and created a number of successful industry trade associations which include the United Medical Marijuana Coalition, Patient Care Association (one of the first medical marijuana industry associations in the country) and, most recently, the Global Alliance for Cannabis Commerce whose current charge is federal cannabis reform.
Senn has made it Urbn Leaf’s mission to source the highest quality cannabis products California has to offer. When one steps inside an Urbn Leaf store, guests are getting a glimpse of “our” personal stash. The company’s ethos is “If we wouldn’t consume it ourselves, it doesn’t belong on our shelves.”
Almost four years and seven locations later, Senn has excelled in the art of catering to a diverse clientele with a top-tier selection of cannabis products. He truly values the power of the plant and understands that educating his team, local communities, and the general public is the real key to success.
Now let’s dig a little deeper into how Urbn Leaf began, where the business is headed, and what it takes to make it in the cannabis industry.
HERE’S A SHORT Q&A WITH OUR FOUNDER WILL SENN:
What led you to start Urbn Leaf in San Diego?
San Diego has been my home since 2003. I moved down here to attend college at SDSU and never left. There’s no better place in the world to live.
What does a typical day in the life of Will Senn look like?
My day starts with early morning calls before heading into the office for anything scheduled. Followed by phone calls and meetings then more phone calls and meetings about having more meetings.
Is there anything you wish you would’ve known when you started in the industry?
I wish I would’ve known how much of a roller coaster I was in for. I feel like every time we turn around regulations are always changing.
When you’re not at work, what do you like to do for fun?
Sleep. I’m kind of a foodie. Eat great food. I love to check out new restaurants and local hot spots.
What’s been your favorite ‘Feel Good’ memory from the past three years?
Our entire team on the evening of December 31, 2017 pulling an all-nighter in the warehouse prepping for the big year ahead. We had a line down the block starting at 4 am in the morning.
What are some of your favorite cannabis products?
For edibles, I love gummies. A few of my favorites are the watermelon Sluggy’s, watermelon lemonade Camino’s, and Kiva’s seasonal Camino gummies like the blood orange flavor. For flower, a good OG has always been my go to.
Are there any resources that have helped you over the years?
The local state and federal trade groups I’ve been a part of have been a huge resource for knowing what is happening and where the industry is headed.
What is one common myth about working in the cannabis industry that you’d like to debunk?
That everyone who owns a Cannabis company is rich. This is fake news.
If you could give advice to anyone looking to get into the industry, start their own cannabis business, or lobby for cannabis policies, what would it be?
Start on the ground floor and understand the culture of the industry. You have to know where the industry has been to know where it is going.