Emmett was born in Rochester, Minnesota, grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and studied history and political science at the University of South Dakota. Emmett’s professional roots and passion run deep in cannabis activism, stemming from his first call to action at 19 years old when he volunteered to help multiple sclerosis patients testify at the South Dakota State Capital. From there, Emmett quickly worked his way up into a position of leadership for the local movement by speaking to the press, raising money, and inspiring volunteers. Facing some of the nation’s harshest drug laws, Emmett was able to form a non-profit organization, South Dakota Compassion, and partner with the former chairman of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to organize a coalition of patients and advocates in support of medical marijuana.
In addition to spearheading an effort to put medical cannabis on the ballot in his home state, Emmett ran for city council as one of the youngest candidates ever to make an attempt. Neighborhood beautification, a tile-art-mosaic involving his entire school district, and creating the first student newspaper at an alternative high school, are some of the ways Emmett has made an impact in the community. Despite losing the ballot, Emmett successfully raised awareness about prison overcrowding and alternative sentencing for non-violent drug offenders by coordinating a film tour of The House I Live In and lobbying state legislators.
Aside from being an outspoken activist in his home state, Emmett has assisted legalization campaigns in Oregon, Montana, Washington, DC, and Nevada, and also played an important role in the historic passage of Colorado’s Amendment 64. With a broad range of non-profit advocacy and political experience, Emmett formed his own consulting company in 2011 to help organizations, candidates and issue-based campaigns. Emmett’s company has served members of both major political parties and provided third parties and independents a needed boost to compete in key states. Having worked closely with cannabis businesses and stakeholders in several campaigns and lobbying efforts, Emmett is eager to promote responsibility in the cannabis industry and help advance a robust legal cannabis marketplace. Emmett will continue to be a revolutionary voice for his generation and make a difference for the cannabis movement.