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Brendan Kennedy
Chief Executive Officer

Brendan brings a strong background of entrepreneurship and hands-on business experience to Privateer Holdings. He’s successfully led the development of new and existing companies, building teams, crafting products and guiding operations. With a voracious appetite for information, Brendan’s insight into technology and growth industries led him to the forefront of consultation and solutions for the venture-backed business community.

Chief Operations Officer of SVB Analytics. SVB Analytics is a non-bank affiliate of Silicon Valley Bank (NASDAQ: SIVB) that offers powerful solutions tailored to the needs of private, venture-backed companies. In 2006, Brendan joined SVB Analytics’ founding team. He was responsible for executing over 350 client valuation assignments and issuing valuation opinions for private companies. Brendan managed a group of 45 people in the US and 75 in India that rendered valuation opinions for emerging growth technology, life science, and venture capital companies. He also managed the delivery of capitalization and options management solutions via the CapMx software platform. During his tenure, Brendan helped grow revenues from $0 to over $8 million a year and client count from 0 to 3000. He closed four M&A transactions and managed the integration of the acquired companies.

President and CEO of Mindability, Inc. Brendan founded and managed the growth of a 30-employee software company focused on customer experience measurement. He built successful client relationships focused on satisfied clients such as Amazon, Microsoft, Expedia, Korn/Ferry International, Home Depot, Macromedia, Deloitte, and The Walt Disney Company.

University of California, Berkeley: BA
University of Washington: MS in Engineering
Yale School of Management: MBA

Brendan lives in Seattle, WA with his wife, Maria. He has finished six Ironman triathlons.


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Michael Blue
Chief Financial Officer

Michael’s finance expertise and business management talents are honed by more than a decade in investment banking, private equity, and consulting. Beyond his executive role in acquisitions and investments, his career has immersed him in nearly every aspect of business development and operations, across a spectrum of consumer and B-to-B industries.

Principal at Herrington, Inc. Michael joined Herrington, Inc., a private equity and development firm, in 2006 and led a range of development and business ventures for the firm. As COO of Ridge Capital Partners and COO of Gaillardia Development Company, Michael was responsible for planning, marketing, and operating both development projects and existing companies across the country.

Vice President at de Visscher & Company. During his time at de Visscher & Company, a private equity, investment banking, and consulting firm based in Greenwich, CT, Michael led major assignments in the valuation, refinance, acquisition, and sale of publicly traded as well as privately held companies. His experience in a variety of industries includes software development, healthcare, energy, real estate, textiles, retail, and hospitality.

Harding University: BBA
Yale School of Management: MBA

Michael lives in Seattle with his wife and two children.


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Christian Groh
Chief Operating Officer

Christian’s combination of professional accomplishments and business vision give Privateer Holdings a uniquely well-positioned partner. His more than 10 years of strategic sales, operations, and management experience has consistently been in new commercial frontiers and instrumental in the emerging legal cannabis industry.

Director of Sales at SVB Analytics. Christian was pivotal in growing its client base from 200 to 2500. He specialized in early stage, venture-backed companies focused on hardware, software, life science, and clean tech.

Advisor for AB 223 Compassionate Use Act of 1996 (Hon. Tom Ammiano). This bill would make findings and declarations regarding medical marijuana, as well as provide that it is the intent of the Legislature to improve the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 and the states' medical marijuana program by establishing a comprehensive and multidisciplinary commission that is empowered to address issues regarding the legality and implementation of the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 and the states' medical marijuana law.

Director at Nextel Communications. Christian created the corporation’s national affinity marketing program that resulted in $1.5 million in new revenue in less than 18 months. He served as a subject matter expert in Transportation/Logistics' vertical partnering with key industry associations through speaking engagements, conferences, and sponsorships, elevating Nextel’s position as the premier wireless solutions provider.

California Maritime Academy: BS
San Francisco State University: MBA

Christian is married with two children. He has competed professionally in mountain biking.


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Jeff Guillot
Managing Director

Jeff has served as a Managing Director since 2013. He has over 20 years of experience as an executive and entrepreneur, repeatedly establishing successful business divisions in rapidly evolving environments. From 2008 to 2013, he served as President and CEO of Halgo Power, Inc., an engineering and construction services company. Prior to that, he was Vice President of Internet Products at Dun & Bradstreet. Jeff has also held senior management positions with Cisco Systems, Trilogy, and Dell.

University of Texas: BS

Originally from Louisiana, Jeff lives in Seattle and enjoys spending time with his family, boating, and playing the guitar.


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Patrick Moen
Managing Director - Compliance

Patrick, a highly decorated former DEA agent and licensed attorney, has joined the Privateer team as Managing Director of Compliance and also serves as in-house legal counsel. His experience in criminal and regulatory matters assists the team in navigating the complex legal environment of the emerging cannabis industry.

Supervisory Special Agent at U.S. Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration. Patrick spent over 10 years as a criminal investigator and supervisor at the DEA, focusing on complex conspiracy investigations. His expertise spans numerous disciplines, including financial investigations, wiretaps and electronic surveillance, undercover operations, and intelligence collection, and culminated with an assignment overseeing a multi-agency task force charged with investigating large scale drug trafficking organizations.

Police Officer. Patrick garnered firsthand experience regarding the social effects of our nation’s drug policies during his 5 years of service as a police officer.

Canisius College: BA
University of Connecticut School of Law: JD

An avid fitness enthusiast, Patrick resides in the greater Seattle area with his wife and three children.


Tonya Reilly
Director Of Finance

Tonya manages the financial reporting and compliance for Privateer Holdings and its subsidiary companies. She leads a growing staff to operate with integrity and efficiency, while providing comprehensive, useful, and accurate financial reporting.

Tonya brings over 20 years of financial and accounting experience to Privateer Holdings. She began her CPA career as an auditor at an international firm and has several years of public accounting experience. Prior to joining Privateer Holdings, Tonya had her own accounting practice providing financial consulting, including interim and part-time CFO services. She earned the AICPA Accredited in Business Valuation designation and her practice included private company valuations as well as other special projects.

Central Washington University:  BS
Certified Public Accountant

Tonya’s English bulldog, Ellie, accompanies her to work. Outside of work, Tonya enjoys playing recreational poker.


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Rommie Callaghan
Director of Human Resources

Rommie brings over 15 years of leadership in human resources with technology companies, most recently with Synapse Product Development. She excels in working and collaborating with leadership teams, as well as developing, attracting, and retaining high-quality talent while fostering a strong sense of culture in high-growth, entrepreneurial organizations.

University of Washington: BA

When not working, Rommie she can be found skiing, boating, fly fishing, or relaxing in her garden.


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ZACK HUTSON
DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC RELATIONS

Zack is a global PR director with extensive experience leading iconic brands and causes through their brightest moments and toughest challenges. At Privateer Holdings, he is working to elevate the conversation about cannabis by building responsible, mainstream brands that fuel change and help end the social harms caused by prohibition.

Director of Global Corporate Communications and Latin America Public Affairs at Starbucks. Before joining Privateer Holdings, Zack held multiple corporate communications roles at Starbucks as a team leader focusing on global media relations, executive thought leadership, financial communications, crisis and issue management, and brand storytelling in the United States, Latin America and around the world. As a lead media strategist and spokesperson, he regularly counseled the c-suite and interacted with top-tier media on Starbucks most high-profile matters. 

Account Supervisor at Edelman and Manager at APCO Worldwide. Prior to Starbucks, Zack worked in San Francisco and Washington DC at two of the world’s largest PR firms as a strategic communications and public affairs consultant to consumer brands, industry associations and a foreign government.

George Washington University: BA

Zack lives in Seattle with his husband, where he enjoys cycling, hiking and running around the Pacific Northwest.


Scott Lowry
Brand Manager

Over the course of his 20-plus-year career, Scott has accumulated extensive brand definition, brand management, and brand building experience with a successful start-up, rebrand, and growth-phase track record. He guided brand strategy for Privateer and its holding companies in his role at Heckler Associates for several years before moving over to Privateer in 2014 as its in-house brand manager.

Partner/Account Director at Heckler Associates. Since 2001, Scott was a pivotal force at Heckler Associates, guiding brand start-ups and repositions, including several for the New Balance family of brands. He supervised major accounts and initiatives for clients from msnbc.com to Velcro. Scott led brand development and launch efforts for Tilray and Arbormain, and worked to extend awareness of Leafly.com across a full spectrum of mediums.

Vice President/Management Supervisor at Foote, Cone and Belding. Scott opened and ran the Seattle and Portland FCB offices, supervising account teams in both locations. Among other responsibilities, he led Taco Bell DMA groups to identify and develop brand and business building initiatives. 

Drury University:  BA

Scott has bike commuted from Bainbridge Island for the last 15 years, where he lives with his wife and a dog named Steve.


Timothy J. Nevin
Director of Strategic Projects

Tim, a Credentialed Government Leader from California, lends his more than 15 years of financial and consulting experience to an array of projects for Privateer Holdings. He brings a seasoned and pragmatic approach to the Privateer Team.

Senior Management Analyst at the City of Daly City, CA. Tim controlled all aspects of the operating and capital budgets for the City. He authored fee studies and was a member of both the California Society of Municipal Finance Officers and the Municipal Management Association of Northern California.

Senior Financial Consultant at Wells Fargo Bank. Tim owned the financial planning and analysis for the commercial, government, and educational banking divisions. He created and initiated customer-level profitability reporting.

Experienced Senior Consultant at Arthur Andersen LLP. Tim managed consulting engagements for Bank of America, Wells Fargo Bank, Waste Management, Blue Shield of California, Chugach Electric, Emery Worldwide, and ArthroCare. He was also part of an international team for a project for Commerzbank in Frankfurt, Germany.

Saint Mary’s College of California: BS
University of San Francisco: MA in Economics

A native of San Francisco, Tim and his wife Katie have two children.


Tahira Rehmatullah
Investment Associate

Tahira’s previous experiences range from consulting to hedge funds to venture capital, bringing a diverse skillset to Privateer Holdings. With her passion for entrepreneurial ventures, knack for bringing order to chaos, and ability to navigate emerging markets, Tahira joined the investment team to conduct due diligence on potential investments and help launch new businesses.

Program Manager at City First Enterprises. Tahira focused on underwriting, structuring, and deal management for CFE’s community development and real estate investment portfolio. Prior to that, she was an associate at Perry Capital on the Structured Products team, where she led research for US and European housing markets and mortgage-backed securities.

Consultant at Ernst & Young. Tahira served as a consultant in the Financial Services Advisory practice, where she developed risk controls and analyzed investment activities for many of the firm’s leading clients.

The Ohio State University: BS
Yale School of Management: MBA

A native of Ohio, Tahira is a dedicated Buckeyes fan who loves to travel and is a film festival enthusiast.


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Sam Bulow
Investment Associate

Sam’s depth of experience in portfolio management, hedge funds, valuation, financial modeling, and analysis make him an invaluable addition to Privateer Holdings, where he directs due diligence on prospective investments. He brings an entrepreneurial spirit and a strategic mindset to the team.

Associate at Princeton University Investment Company. Sam managed the University’s investments in hedge funds and US equity managers. At Princeton, he reallocated more than $4 billion in assets, assisting the University in weathering the financial crisis. His operational responsibilities involved overseeing internal reporting and managing the relationship with the university's custodian.

Berry College: BS
Yale School of Management: MBA
CFA Institute: CFA Charterholder

A native Vermonter and an Eagle Scout, Sam is an avid outdoorsman and loves hiking, biking roads and trails, skiing, and white water rafting. In 2011, he hiked the length of Vermont on the Long Trail.


Nico Richardson
Investment Associate

Nico’s background in transactional finance, capital allocation management, and operations make him a strong addition to Privateer’s investment team. He analyzes investment opportunities and helps drive organic growth for Privateer’s existing portfolio companies.

Director at Argo Group International Holdings. In his role at Argo, Nico was responsible for conducting due diligence on potential investment opportunities and facilitating the integration of recently acquired assets. His operational responsibilities included managing the allocation of $1.6 billion of capital across Argo’s global footprint and overseeing the development and operation of Argo’s London financial planning group.

Analyst at Deutsche Bank. Nico began his career with the Global Real Estate, Gaming, Lodging, and Leisure group, where he advised clients from a range of industries on M&A opportunities and capital raises. 

Duke University: BA
Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College: MBA

Nico and his wife live in Seattle, where they spend their free time exploring the Pacific Northwest with their beloved boxer, Ruger. Nico enjoys skiing, snowboarding, and all competitive sports.


Yohanes Putra
Controller

With a combined 10 years in public accounting and industry, Yohanes has experience in a multitude of industries including manufacturing, technology, professional services, retail, fashion, and entertainment. His experience includes assisting a multi-national technology enterprise undergoing a multi-year first-time audit to file a public offering. Yohanes holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting and Finance and is a licensed CPA in the state of Washington.

University of Washington: BA, Accounting & Finance
Certified Public Accountant

Yohanes loves fashion, music, and performing arts. He once flew 5,000 miles for a concert. 


Adam Amsel
Creative Associate

Adam brings a deep understanding of and commitment to design to Privateer Holdings, where he’s involved in a range of architectural, branding, and graphic design efforts. His years of experience at an award-winning architecture firm honed his ability to tackle complex problems at varying scales.

Project Architect & Presentation Lead at The Miller Hull Partnership. Adam assisted design, managed documentation, and advanced graphic representation. His notable projects included the University of Washington Odegaard Library renovation, which won a 2014 national AIA honor award, Boeing 737 Assembly Realignment, San Ysidro Land Port of Entry, and the Bullitt Center in Seattle.

Drury University: BA
University of Washington: Master of Architecture

Adam lives in Seattle with his wife. He’s a tennis player, occasionally runs a marathon, and explores the mountains year-round.


Andrew Parikh
FINANCIAL Analyst

Andrew brings a wide range of professional experience to Privateer Holdings, including start-up financing, biochemical research, and luxury hospitality management. He is proud that he maintained his Dean's List standing while putting himself through school by working full-time.

Front Office Supervisor at Fairmont Hotels & Resorts. Andrew served as the duty manager for this Seattle premier hotel. He was repeatedly recognized for outstanding performance and directly contributed to four consecutive years of record-setting department revenue.

Western Washington University: Chemistry & Neuropsychology
University of Washington: BA, Finance & Entrepreneurship

Andrew lives in Seattle with his fiancée. In his spare time, he enjoys visiting local farmers' markets and cooking for friends and family.


Matt Kittrell
Finance Assistant

Matt brings several years of HR experience to the team at Privateer.

Personnel Assistant, State of Nebraska. Matt spent two years supporting the state’s temporary employment programs and performed compliance auditing for state employees.

University of Nebraska: BS

Raised in Lincoln, Nebraska, Matt moved to Seattle in 2014. In his spare time he likes reading, watching movies, or any other relaxing activity.


Tammie Johnson
IT Manager

Tammie has worked in IT for over 25 years. She previously served in the Navy and the Army.

Sr. Manager of IT at HaloSource Inc. Tammie began her role at HaloSource Inc., a global water and antimicrobial technology company, as the sole IT support and grew the IT infrastructure from one server supporting 50 users to seven physical and virtual servers supporting 200 users globally. She later advanced to Sr. Manager of IT, forming and managing an IT support staff, implementing a more redundant snapshot technology backup solution, and spearheading network infrastructure upgrades and new build outs for both the headquarters and the plant.

IT Site Administrator at Albany Molecular, Inc. At Albany Molecular, Inc., a research facility focused on early phases of drug discovery, Tammie managed all IT support for the facility including configuring servers and supporting network access between the New York headquarters and the Washington research center. She also configured and maintained computers that worked in conjunction with robots, HPLCs, and NMR equipment.

Tammie has lived in the Seattle area for over 15 years. She is married with two daughters and has a pack of small dogs. She enjoys athletics and used to be a professional boxer before switching over to professional football.


Rhonda Meier
Executive Assistant To The CEO

Rhonda brings over 20 years of experience as a high-level executive assistant to her role supporting the three founders of Privateer Holdings. She began her career as a corporate paralegal and worked in the venture capital industry for over 15 years providing administrative and operational support to partners and CEOs. With a solid background in investor relations, operations, travel and event planning, and administrative support, Rhonda enjoys the fast pace and unique opportunity to help actively shape a new industry.

Executive Assistant to Managing Director at Intellectual Ventures. Rhonda provided business management and executive support to the head of Global Good at Intellectual Ventures, a global health development fund collaborating with Bill Gates whose mission is to harness advances in science and technology to solve difficult problems and save lives in the developing world.

Administrative Partner at Draper Richards L.P. Rhonda supported the firm’s founding partner while directing the administrative and operational aspects of a venture capital firm specializing in investment in early-stage technology companies. Hired as the first employee, she grew with the company from inception to the establishment of two private equity funds and a non-profit foundation serving social entrepreneurs.

A native of California, Rhonda lives in Seattle with her family. In her spare time, she enjoys competitive rowing and is an avid theatre and opera fan as well as a luxury travel expert.


Tarah Finley
Executive Assistant

Tarah joined the Privateer team as an administrative assistant in 2014. She brings a varied background to the team; as a retired ballerina and a former account manager for an advertising agency, she exudes grace under pressure while juggling multiple projects. Tarah enjoys making processes efficient and planning annual company events while supporting the Privateer team.     

Seattle University: BA

A self-proclaimed foodie, Tarah enjoys exploring the Seattle restaurant scene.


Kelsey Howell
Office Manager

Kelsey has a finance and economics background and is experienced with process development and management. She comes to Privateer Holdings most recently from Amazon, where she worked directly with customers and various business teams to drive and implement projects aimed at simplifying complicated fulfillment processes. Kelsey also completed complex investigations resulting in hundreds of thousands of dollars of savings for the company. She now oversees the day-to-day operations of the busy Privateer Holdings headquarters.

California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo: BS

In her spare time, Kelsey helps manage a nonprofit dog rescue, assisting in the adoption of hundreds of dogs per year.