Otha Smith III
Otha Smith III is lucky to be alive. In 2003, he was involved in a horrific car crash after falling asleep at the wheel.
“I have 34 staples on the top of my head to remind me how precious life is,” he says.
After spending the next three years on prescription medications, cannabis helped Smith kick the painkillers — “one of the toughest things I ever did,” he says — and kept his chronic pain at bay. And when Colorado legalized cannabis for recreational use, Smith knew he wanted to be involved.
Along with co-founders Julius Moore and Lucas Roe, he developed Tetragram, a mobile platform that gives cannabis consumers the ability to track all the information related to the products they’ve purchased, including terpene and cannabinoid profiles and consumption methods, allowing for more accurate analysis of each product’s efficacy for treating various ailments.
“The key word that we like to use is ‘empowerment,’” Smith says. “Data not only empowers the consumer because they are able to draw conclusions on what’s working, but more importantly, it helps the dispensary staff make better product recommendations.”
The Tetragram app launched on July 10, 2020, and the Maryland-based company is now working with 75 dispensaries throughout the country that actively promote the program. It’s a passion project for Smith because he’s one of the patients the app is designed to help — and being an entrepreneur sure beats his old corporate life of selling electric and natural gas commodities.
“There’s nothing like independence,” he says, “and the only way to get there is to control your own destiny. It’s like my parents once told me: ‘If you’re not working toward your own dreams, you’re working towards someone else’s.”