The CTA team is vital to what we do, often your first point of contact and information. We fully understand that not only is our team relied upon to give good advice and service, but also to go the extra mile.
It's what we do, everyone is dedicated to ensuring that questions are answered, advice is legally correct and that you'll always get more from our team than you would if you called any Government Department. Indeed, many Government Departments now call us for advice.
It's testament to the team that they can almost always be found working well outside their normal hours trying to help members or find answers. In fact on average the team works around 50 hours a week over and above what they get paid to do.
Cefyn (Kevin) He's the primary point of contact within the CTA and usually the one who answers the phone.
"I’m here to help you with anything you need from understanding the guidelines to finding that one thing that can unlock your company’s potential.
I have a 31 year association with hemp and deal with many enquiries that can be considered as "off the beaten track" which makes me a good sounding board for ideas and possibly knowledgeable in what you would likely have to go through to get whatever you’re working on, off the ground.
If I can’t help, I have access to someone who can.
I live in South Devon with my Wife, step son, 2 dogs and an angry cat. Despite my name I can barely speak a word of Welsh, in fact I know more German than I do my native tongue. I’m a complete trekkie, Star Wars… meh and occasionally I pretend at being a musician."
Cefyn can be reached by email using Cefyn@cannabistrades.org or calling 01430 652 500 and pressing button 1.
Stacey is in charge of accounts, she sets up direct debits and takes card payments etc.
"I'm Stacey and I work in accounts. My role involves setting up direct debits and payments, and ensuring that your membership fees are up to date so your CTA membership runs smoothly. If you have any account issues, I'm your point of contact. I enjoy working with you lovely members and I am here to help.
My background is not in Cannabis but I have worked in the public and health sector for many years. I trained as a dental nurse, worked for an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and then trained as a court clerk. I later worked in a hospital pharmacy as a dispenser before moving on to Pathology (Microbiology) where I worked as a lab aide. Before joining the CTA I worked in my husband’s business preparing accounts and as an administrator.
The world of CBD oils and the development of the Cannabis industry is fascinating and I am catching up quickly. I may not know the answers to your CBD related questions immediately but I aim to get answers for you asap or put you in touch with the person who is in the know. It’s amazing to see how far things have progressed in the Cannabis industry and what the future will bring. I am very proud to be part of this development" I live in East Yorkshire with my husband, son and a rather crazy cat".
Stacey can be reached by email at email@example.com, she can also be called on extension 2503 (ask Cefyn).
Sarah hails from Hull in East Yorkshire and is proud of her roots, though she often berates her mother for ever moving up from rather posh Royston!
"I deal with membership applications through to approval. I am the point of contact for the screening service we use and also the point of contact for merchant and insurance introductions. I assist with compliance with new member applications prior to membership approval.
I used to be a manager with McDonalds before moving over to Pizza Hut for the better class of customer (it didn't happen!). I was also a fully trained and qualified domiciliary care worker before moving to work as a senior carer and drugs administrator in specialist dementia care in a care home environment.
I'm married to Mike (for all my sins) and since we moved out to the Malaga Region of Spain over three years ago we've acquired a pack of dogs and a herd of cats, although Mike still manages to be more demanding than all of them put together.
I'm a huge advocate for hemp products and have been using them since well before the CTA was formed".
Interesting fact...Sarah was originally supposed to run the CTA, but felt that she didn't have the primary contacts to be that involved.
Sarah can be reached by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org she is not generally available for calls unless pre booked.
Nicola is one of two new additions to our team and hails from Staffordshire.
Nicolas role is Member compliance, ensuring that members are compliant and dealing with both FSA, Trading Standards and MHRA officers, it’s fair to say in the short time Nicola has been with us she’s made an impact.
"Hi, my name is Nicola Dowling and I live in Staffordshire and do enjoy a cheesy oatcake. :)
My party trick is solving a Rubik's cube in under a minute.
You’ll see me at CTA and Hemp events bobbing about or occasionally running a trade stall. I'm easy to spot thanks to my mohawk.
If you need any general advice regarding CBD (or hair care products) I’m your woman".
She says her aim is to "become the female Cefyn", which we find confusing, a beard really wouldn't suit her. :)
Nicola can be found by emailing Nicola@cannabistrades.org We should have her on the phone fairly shortly.
Hailing from "somewhere in the Midlands but living in Spain", Steph is coming on board to help manage our membership renewals. She has a history in sales and admin and as such we look forward to working with her.
"Hello my name is Steph, currently living in Spain, an ex-army brat so I've travelled the world, including 7 years on a narrow boat. I'm a qualified masseuse which I have performed for about 25 years, broadening my field with reiki and shamanic healing".
Steph can be found by emailing email@example.com and is generally available on the phone.
The Board is formed of 7 members, 4 of whom were the original Founding Members. Any Member can be elected to the Board, there is also a "Members Representative" who can bring Members concerns to the Board.
Chris is a fully qualified banker and worked within the banking sector for almost 30 years with Barclays, Santander and Alliance and Leicester. He's been an independent finance director for over 10 years now and manages all aspects of our financial management.
Chris lives in North Yorkshire with his wife Angela and 2 sons, one of whom is currently studying at university.
Simon Dusher (CBD Life)
Originating from the North East, Simons' passion for CBD and his entrepreneurial spirit are the driving force behind his company.
After CBD became a large part of life for Simons' family in 2014 he decided to form the company ‘CBDLife’ in early 2015 with his brother.
"We started with the intention of sharing in the knowledge gained from their experience to help others create positive change in the their own lives".
With his teams' background being in engineering, this lead to the company’s focus being on the creation of unique products in all categories of consumption.
“We are proud our family run business and have enjoyed the organic growth we have had over the last 4 years. Being one of the founding members of the CTA I understood how important it was to work together to protect this industry we all love. I look forward to the future of this exciting, innovative industry.”
A Founder Member of the CTA (and originally believe it or not, a Geordie), Hemp Advocate, Educator, Innovator and Environmentalist; I am passionate about all aspects of the hemp industry. I am heavily involved in Research and Policy Development to help re-establish all aspects of the hemp industry and I attend meetings and conferences (with Mike) as part of my role within the CTA.
As the Compliance Director, it is my objective to support members of the CTA to assist Members in complying with EU and UK laws, policies and regulations, alongside the rules and regulations of the CTA.
Compliance is critical for the whole industry. We are all responsible for proactively identifying, evaluating, mitigating and reporting on compliance risks across our industry. This is in all our interests so that our industry can flourish and thrive into the future.
Guy is also the Chairman of HempTank.co.uk (the UK’s think tank for hemp education and policy development) and a Founder of Hemptation.me
Guy lives in the South West with his wife Helen and a rather strange Border Collie who loves going in the car until it starts to move...He's recently become a grandfather to twins.
He can be reached by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
PR & Events Director
Sian Phillips (Fiddlers Elbow Grease)
Sian joined the Directors of the CTA in November 2018. Her role is the PR and Events director, Having volunteered her time during the last three CTA events.
"I was a professional performer and spent 35 years as a session musician and solo fiddle performer having studied Early Music as RWCMD, Cardiff, touring, recording and writing, before deciding to step down due to health issues – the reason I got into CBD.
I have also been a Festival organiser, Health & Safety Office, MU Regional Committee Member and kept my hand in with some Graphic Design and typesetting, from another previous life. I trained in PR and Crisis Management with the Church in Wales whilst working as an Assistant to the Archbishop of Wales’ Press Officer. I’m a freelance Media Manager too and still teach the Fiddle, Music and Singing in a couple of Schools and have private students.
I formed the Facebook CBD Users UK group which has educated our customers and expanded the general knowledge of cannabinoid therapies to nearly 51,000 people. It’s now run by a group of amazing volunteers who are very clued up on the vast range of products out there.
My main focus is Fiddler’s Elbow Grease and I produce balms, salts, oils and teas".
Sian is not naturally English, she is Welsh. She has a fondness for languages and although she might not be fluent she can mostly get the message across.
Sian lives in Oxfordshire with Jon and her cat Oscar.
She can be reached on email@example.com
Tom Whettem (British Cannabis & Canabidol)
A Founding Member of the CTA Tom is a serial entrepreneur with a successful track record in a number of sectors. Tom has spearheaded the introduction of many market leading brands and pioneered industries from the ground up. Specialising in emerging markets, the foundation of his past accomplishments is routed in his in-depth knowledge of legislation and digital marketing.
Tom holds executive positions with the UK’s largest CBD brands Canabidol and British Cannabis. Not only one of the foremost experts in the UK’s cannabis industry but a passionate accomplished individual that sees him involved at every level, from supporting smaller businesses, to his work with UK and European governmental departments in his role with the CTA.
Tom lives with his partner Pearl and has homes in the UK, Portugal, Cape Verde and The Philippines.
Jas Nottay (Loveburgh & HPP)
A born entrepreneur; without any formal education or training, Jas embarked on his first venture at the tender age of 19 quickly proving his natural aptitude towards business.
His first enterprise was in the field of printing and graphics designing, swiftly growing to be a dominating player in the large format printing industry, with blue-chip clients ranging from The Jenson Button Trust through to telecoms company Sky.
Being a naturalist and believer in the power of health and nutrition in late 2014 Jas foresaw the next growing global trend in the health & nutrition industry – Cannabis and decided this would be his next focus. After an extensive 2 year R&D process, Jas took a leap of faith in selling his printing business and concentrate his efforts towards creating a plant based, consumer & eco conscious global brand. Fast forward to today and his enterprise spans globally with projects involved in cannabis farming, extraction, manufacture and most recently spearheading a clinical trialling project of cannabis-derived medicines.
In the last 4 years, Jas and his dedicated team have helped to pioneer the Cannabis and CBD industry here in the UK and across Europe with a focus on healthy and conscious cannabis products.
Jas lives near Edinburgh and heads up the Scottish team.
Phil Culbertson (Love CBD)
"I graduated in 2002 with a science degree in Audio Engineering and spent the next eight years working for a production company / independent record label. I worked with a range of artists predominantly in the pop music industry, some famous others less so.
After having twins in 2012, I was told in not so uncertain terms by my wife “to get a proper job”.
I worked for various companies with a variety of positions and roles though nothing was an obvious fit. Fortunately, in 2014 my Brother Dan had started a company selling what at the time was an obscure oil made from Cannabis. I immediately loved the idea and once the company could support more staff, I got onboard. I have been managing the B2B side of the company ever since.
I now manage a sizeable workforce and Love CBD supply many of the largest health food distributors and retailers in the UK. However, what has not changed is that we are still at heart a small family business that is passionate about Cannabis".
Phil lives in Suffolk with his wife and the twins.
Mike Harlington (Chair)
Mike's a seasoned, natural entrepreneur and has been in business for 31 years in various industries (mostly involving his other passion, bits of wire). This has driven the incredible growth of the CTA into the world's leading and indeed largest trade association of its kind.
Mike is no stranger to being involved in devisive roles; he set up the UK's first Online Business Directory, showed the Prison Service how to break out of a Category "C" prison and introduced a fibre network to the City of Hull when the incumbent operator Kingston Communications refused to listen to the people of the city.
Mike was passionately anti drugs, until some research and work in another sector made him re-evaluate the cannabis industry and he discovered a number of issues both with the prohibition and message that is often used against cannabis. However he has never been professionally involved in the industry, other than previously owning a plant research centre.
He's not one for mincing his words and as such has won a deal of respect from the Government Departments and Organisations he now deals with day to day. He's travelled to many EU countries engaging with their authorities to ensure that cannabis products are regulated and dealt with as natural foods and medicines.
Mike is now a regular speaker at events around Europe and although he professes he isn't an "expert", his knowledge base and keen interest have extended to his knowledge being used in court and expert panels.
Mike lives in southern Spain with his wife Sarah and a pack of rescue dogs as well as a herd of cats. Choosing to retire there long before the CTA was formed.
Editor's Note; while all of the above is true, it's not nearly so exciting as the original posts that were written in order to get some of those mentioned above to send us their biogs...