We had the good fortune of connecting with Sharon Braunling and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sharon, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
I originally got involved in the cannabis industry because I believe in the myriad of potential benefits the plant has to offer. Cannabis has been shown to alleviate pain without the potential for addiction that opioids have. It has been shown to be very beneficial in alleviating PTSD in vets with way less side effects than the antidepressants typically prescribed. Cannabis can help with sleep and is not addictive like other pharmaceutical sleep aids. There is evidence that cannabis has potential benefits for cancer patients- from helping to combat nausea from chemotherapy to restoring appetite and even possibly contributing to the shrinkage of tumors. The plant has so much potential that scientific research must be conducted in order to discover all the possible benefits. I was drawn to the industry out of a desire to be involved in a newly legal industry that has amazing potential to benefit mankind in many areas. It’s also hella exciting – like the Wild West! I’ve always had a high tolerance for risk and a passion for going against the mainstream. I was born to be involved!
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I am a founding partner in several businesses and a passive investor in many more. The first business I was involved in as a founding member is HiBuddy AZ, a cannabis cultivation enterprise. One thing that sets us apart is our organic cultivation method. We do not use any chemical fertilizers or pesticides. We rely on natural nutrients and pest control. For instance, we use ladybugs to eliminate certain types of pests. We buy them by the thousands! Anyone who has ever started a business can attest that it is never easy. There are always challenges along the way. We have persevered through numerous dark days and difficult times to get where we are today- thriving and growing (no pun intended).
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I always try to expose visitors to the natural beauty of the desert. Sedona is an amazing spot about 2 hours North. There is incredible hiking there in the red rocks as well as a very strong spiritual energy. There are said to be several vortexes throughout Sedona which are said to be portals to other dimensions. I’m into “woo woo” stuff so it’s a great area for me. Spring training is another fabulous thing to do in Phoenix. Getting to see major league players in small stadiums as they prepare for the season is a real treat. The Waste Management Phoenix Open is also a not to be missed experience. The famous 16th hole where fans cheer or boo loudly depending on the shot is the antithesis of any hole at any other golf tournament. Old Town Scottsdale is a must see as well. It’s a walkable area with an old west feel to it that houses shops and art galleries and restaurants. There are so many great places to eat or have a drink and outdoor dining is available year round with misters in the summer and heaters in the winter. There is a reason the Phoenix area is consistently in the top 5 fastest growing U.S. cities!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I have to give a shout out to my business partner, Gerald Lindenmuth. His encouragement and support gave me the confidence I needed to jump into investing without any prior experience. I was in my 40’s, going through a divorce and had no idea how I was gong to support myself. I met Gerald about the same time and he showed me the ropes of investing starting with flipping houses and then branching out into other opportunities. I learned a lot from his mentorship and I will always be grateful for the part he played in helping me get to where I am.