*By 2022, CBD will be among the largest billion-dollar industries in the world. But, to this day, many people of color have found it extremely difficult to break into the booming marketplace.
One entrepreneur, however, has succeeded against the odds and become the only black woman in the state of Georgia to own a CBD company (non-affiliate), and one of only a handful in the entire country. Her name is Jacquece Jennings.
Jennings owns Nuleaf #1, a premium CBD store based in Roswell, GA that specializes in organic and vegan CBD products. Visitors can find everything from CBD pain cream, edibles, tinctures/oils, pet products, water solubles, and skincare applicants. Nuleaf #1 is a one-stop-shop with premium grades products that are grown in the U.S.
The question is, how has Jennings been able to achieve what others seeking entry into the CBD industry have been unable to? Well, her answer is quite simple.
“God,” said the former military vet and corporate leader. “I knew I didn’t want to work a regular job, but had no idea I was going to be doing this. At first, I thought I would have a dispensary or something, but that’s why you have to pay attention to your journey.”
Speaking of journeys, the Atlanta native came from humble beginnings with her single mother and two brothers. Unlike many of her peers, she stayed away from the streets and out of trouble, instead focusing on school and her love for reading. She possessed a fierce desire at a young age to overcome her circumstances and chart her course to a successful life. By age 15 she was already working and making money, unknowingly cementing her independence and ability to be self-sufficient. That is where her entrepreneurial spirit was born.
After Jennings served her military term, she entered corporate America. During those years, though, she endured frequent bouts with depression.
“In the military, I experienced a great deal of ups and downs. I was so confused and stressed out about the direction my life was headed. At one point, I experienced a dark moment of depression,” she said. “I remember waking up at 5 a.m. every morning and working extremely long shifts. Some days I would just go to my room and cry myself to sleep to wake up to an entire new day. My body was shutting down and life was passing me by. Until, one day, I decided I had enough. I looked at myself in the mirror and said if you don’t get it together, you are going to end up as another lost soul.”
Little did she know, the personal setbacks would lead to a major set-up.
After leaving the service, Jennings joined a company in Seattle and rapidly climbed the corporate ranks. Despite earning a lot of money and making many connections, she still wasn’t fulfilled. However, the stage was set. While working, she travelled and had the opportunity to learn about the medicinal industry and how CBD was helping to save lives all around the world. She spent time on farms, met doctors and connected with leaders in the CBD business. She was planting seeds everywhere she went.
“I saw that these people were making like $500,000 a month,” Jennings said. So much money, but the kicker was the benefits of CBD and how it heals people.”
In 2015, Jennings went to a routine eye exam where she discovered something was wrong with the pressure in her eyes and was sent to do an MRI. Once her lab results came back, she was told she had a pituitary gland tumor. The discovery only intensified her desire to learn more about CBD. She studied relentlessly and became an expert. When CBD was legalized in 2018, she was so excited that she took the leap to launch her own business. Jennings sought partners to join her in the endeavor, but out of fear, or misperceptions about CBD, they refused. So, she pressed on without them, securing her licenses and funding everything herself. Today, she is happy she did. She is a rising star in the field.
“I did not know that my personal health issue and my prior experiences would connect years later for me to be able to go back to my old contacts, cut out the middle man and launch my own business,” she said. “All that reading and research I had done in the past had paid off.”
CBD has been a blessing to Jennings and her family. Due to its healing powers, her tumor, while still there, is small and non-cancerous. She uses CBD to overcome anxiety and pain.
“CBD is so powerful and I wish everyone could experience it for themselves. Those working corporate jobs who are always busy and multi-tasking, it helps them to stay focused, she said. “You even have kids in school who take CBD because they have anxiety or are depressed. CBD is life-changing and I am on a mission to build awareness.”
As Nuleaf #1 continues to thrive, Jennings plans to create a partnership program allowing the opening of several more Nuleaf #1 stores. Additionally, she will use her passion for motivational speaking and life coaching to inspire and uplift and support people across the country who are in need of healing.
“I want to be the person who gives people the most knowledge so they can truly see the authenticity of our products. I also want to uplift and inspire others to be their best selves, mind body and soul.” She said, this is my calling.”
To connect with Jacquece Jennings on social media, follow her on Instagram at @iamjacquecejennings. For more on Nuleaf #1 and CBD, visit the company website at www.nuleafone.com, or follow on Facebook and Instagram at @nuleaf.1