About District Cannabis
District Cannabis Began with a chance Meeting between its founders Edward Weidenfeld and andras krischner
Ed comes from a background of administrative law and has served as counsel to pharmaceutical manufacturing companies, as well as on high-level boards and commissions under six presidential administrations. After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, Ed discovered that cannabis was instrumental in improving his quality of life with a degenerative disease and made it his mission to grow the cleanest and most effective medicine possible.
Andras comes to the medical cannabis industry from a different angle; after completing his bachelors in Sustainable Agriculture, Andras went on to found an 80-acre organic vegetable farm in Vermont, where he was tasked with amending and rehabilitating the fallow hay fields into a profitable and efficient farm, well-drilling, installation of irrigation and septic systems, and the construction of two (2) x 1,500 square foot greenhouses. After several years of farming, Andras relocated to California to work with and train other experienced cannabis cultivators. Andras built a warehouse cultivation facility that supplied medical cannabis collectives and dispensaries with what was widely recognized as some of the finest medical grade cannabis in the Bay Area.
The combined passions of public policy, public health, and sustainable production led Ed and Andras to open the District of Columbia’s premiere medical cannabis cultivation facility, with a strong company ethos of providing the highest standard products to local medical patients, and treating the plant with integrity and respect. The staff at Phyto is comprised of individuals with backgrounds in horticulture, genetics, culinary, construction, retail and other careers that lend their experience to cannabis cultivation. The combined knowledge of our seasoned team allows us to create a truly world class medicinal product, designed to fit into a patient’s everyday life.
marijuana cultivation dc
Meet Our Team
Keeping the right Company, Keeps our company right.
ED WEIDENFELD / FOUNDER & CHAIRMAN
Edward Weidenfeld is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and Columbia University School of Law. He was a senior partner at a major international law firm, where he specialized in corporate transactions and administrative law, before founding his eponymous law firm, The Weidenfeld Law Firm. He has served as counsel to Photofrin Inc., a pharmaceutical manufacturing company producing a treatment for macular degeneration, and as a director of Imitron Inc., a medical device manufacturing company making high-speed cardiac imaging devices that was acquired by General Electric.
Mr. Weidenfeld has been appointed to high-level boards and commissions under six presidential administrations, most recently serving as Chairman of the Board of Visitors of the National Defense University. He is a lifetime member of the American Law Institute and a Senior Fellow of the Administrative Conference of the United States.
Mr. Weidenfeld became a supporter of medical cannabis after he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and discovered that cannabis relieved the associated muscle stiffness. He was national chairman of the Parkinson’s Action Network which is now part of The Michael J. Fox Foundation.
ANDRAS KIRSCHNER / CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Andras Kirschner has focused his horticulture studies on the cannabis plant since 1998. Mr. Kirschner earned his B.S. in Sustainable Agriculture at the University of Maine School of Plant, Soil, and Environmental Science in 2003, which included several years of practical, hands-on field experience at the Rogers Farm managing crop rotation; application of fertilizers, manures, and pesticides; monitoring of diseases, weeds, and insects; and creating enterprise budgets to aid in planting decision-making.
In 2004, Mr. Kirschner founded Stony View Farms in Vermont, an 80-acre mixed organic vegetable farm. He oversaw all aspects of developing the farm from fallow hay fields to a profitable and efficient farm, directing improvements to the roadways, well-drilling, installation of an irrigation system and septic system, construction of a house, and construction of two 1,500 square foot greenhouses for cultivation.
Mr. Kirschner sold Stony View Farms in 2007 and moved to California to work with a group of experienced medical cannabis cultivators. Mr. Kirschner and his colleagues built a warehouse in Oakland, California and supplied medical cannabis collectives in the Bay Area with cannabis for medical use by qualified patients. Mr. Kirschner has designed, built, and successfully operated medical cannabis cultivation facilities in California supplying legal dispensaries in Los Angeles and now in Washington DC and soon Maryland.
Mr. Kirschner has completed the required curriculum for a Masters in Business Administration from Loyola Marymount University. Mr. Kirschner plans to submit his final thesis based on the business plans executed in the legal cannabis markets of the District and Maryland.
ERIC ROSS / CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
Eric Ross joined District Cannabis in early 2019 after having been an advisor for the last 4 years.
Eric joined District Cannabis from Metropolis Capital Advisors where he was President of Capital Markets. At Metropolis, Eric advised his clients, including District Cannabis and its affiliates, on acquisitions, dispositions, capital formation and strategic joint ventures.
Prior to Metropolis, Eric spent the 5 years as President of Artery Capital Group, a DC based family office focusing on real estate and private equity investments in emerging industries, including cannabis. At Artery, Eric helped set investment policy and helped invest and manage the family office’s capital, including leading its investment in District Cannabis’s Washington, DC affiliate, Phyto.
Prior to joining Artery Capital Group, Eric was COO/CFO at Sandy Spring Builders, a premier custom home builder, Co-Managing Partner and CFO of Gary Lee Development, a single and multi-family developer, Managing Director in the Corporate Finance Group at Arthur Andersen LLP, and Senior Vice President and Head of Asset Management at National Housing Partnership.
Eric is a graduate of Boston University where he received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.
PAAVO STEINKAMP / CHIEF SCIENCE OFFICER
Paavo is an unduly motivated individual who hosts a relentless drive to succeed. Born with an inherent understanding of science and creativity, Paavo traveled an unconventional path of technical-schooling, self-education, and creative pursuit which lead him to serendipitously meet the co-founders of District Cannabis while residing in San Francisco and Los Angeles. He co-authored the applications for both of the District Cannabis facilities and has been playing a key role in the development of the company and all of its daily operations since the point of inception. He’s currently using his scientific aptitude and technical proficiency contribute to the ongoing development of precision irrigation methodologies, data collection, and analytical practices.
GRACE HYDE / CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Grace Hyde joined District Cannabis in late 2018 after five years experience in the medical cannabis industry, having managed both wholesale and retail operations.
Grace entered the cannabis sphere after completing her B.S. in plant sciences with an entry level position, quickly rising through the ranks to become retail manager. This exposure to patients needs was crucial in Grace’s later wholesale production roles when formulating consumer products.
Upon joining District Cannabis, Grace launched a line of infused products that includes a variety of edible and topical products. Her current role includes managing all post-harvest departments as well as working in conjunction with the cultivation team to maximize efficiencies and support the expansion of the District Cannabis facilities.