As vice president of innovation at Wana Brands, Mike Hennesy oversees research and development, new product design, educational training content and growing partnerships with new cannabis technologies. Hennesy joined Wana Brands in 2014 and led the company’s sales team through the early days of recreational sales and three consecutive years of 200% annual growth.
“I’m proud of my instrumental role in leading Wana’s drive for meaningful innovation,” he says. “Much of Wana’s success revolves around innovation.”
Hennesy spearheaded the creation of Wana Brand’s line of fast-acting Wana Quick Gummies, which use an innovative encapsulation technique to increase the bioavailability of cannabinoids and ranked in the top 10 best-selling edibles in Colorado less than a year after launch. In addition to developing the fast-acting gummies, he also played a pivotal role in the launch of the Wana Optimals, Fast Asleep, Stay Asleep and Quick Calm lines.
Hennesy developed an online, interactive training program to teach budtenders and employees about the endocannabinoid system and has directed the development of Wana Brands’ proprietary terpene blends to deliver effect-oriented products. He is a graduate of the Master’s Program for Cannabis Science and Therapeutics at the University of Maryland’s School of Pharmacy and holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental science and technology from the University of Maryland. He is also a certified rescue diver and an Eagle Scout.
“After I graduated, I moved to Colorado in 2013, where I could marry my passions as an outdoor enthusiast and believer in cannabis,” Hennesy says.