Seth Adler: Ethan Nadelmann returns. But first, some supporters to thank. And thank you, as always, for listening.
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Ethan Nadelmann. Ethan Nadelmann returns for his Drug Policy Alliance exit interview. Ethan explains that there are a whole range of issues, personal, professional, political and otherwise, that make this point in time the most appropriate for a transition. We discuss what he's liked most about the job, what he's liked least, and a bit of everything in between. Ethan responds to what we should be looking for as far as qualities and qualifications for his successor. And we discuss what he's planning on doing next.
On leaving, he very deliberately decided to focus on being 100% present, ensuring that DPA was in a good place, which he explains, it is. Welcome to Cannabis Economy. I'm your host, Seth Adler. Check us out on social with the handle @CannEconomy. That's two ns and the word economy. Part three, following episode 67 and 202 with Ethan Nadelmann. The exit interview.
Okay. So I guess this is really happening, Ethan.
Ethan Nadelmann: It sure is. What are we, mid-April? A couple weeks to go. Yeah. On my way.
Seth Adler: How you feeling?
Ethan Nadelmann: I'll tell you, Seth. I'm feeling, I'm feeling really good. I mean, you know, this was a decision that I started thinking about a couple years ago.
Seth Adler: Right.
Ethan Nadelmann: And really started to set in motion last summer. The key thing was getting my board chair, Ira Glasser, the former head of the ACLU in the 80s and 90s, you know, he's been my partner in building DPA for all the time we've been here, since 2000. And he knew it was going to put a lot of responsibility on his shoulders, and it was important to me that Ira still be around as the chair in order to oversee the transition.
Seth Adler: Got it.
Ethan Nadelmann: So I had to persuade Ira that, you know, I thought this through deeply, and that there were a whole range of personal and organizational and political factors why it made sense to do it now, as opposed to two years or five years or 10 years from now. But I have to say that while I have some trepidations about the future, I'm also quite excited about it. And I'm also quite confident that DPA is gonna, you know, continue to grow and flourish under whomever they find as my successor.
Seth Adler: Well, I appreciate that, and I'm happy that you feel that way. It's interesting to hear that you ... That part of the plan of you leaving was because Ira is still in that chair position, right?
Ethan Nadelmann: Well, I should say, I mean, you know, when you make ... I shouldn't say when one ... I'll speak personally.
Seth Adler: Yeah.
Ethan Nadelmann: When I made this decision, it was probably about 25 different variables that went into it. You know, part of it was the personal. It was, you know, I was working on my 16th or 17th annual budget and preparing my 33rd or 34th board meeting in the 9th biennial conference, and some of that stuff gets to feel ... You know, I just noticed that my enthusiasm and energy. I mean, on the one hand, it gets easier because you've done it before and because you are able to hand off more and more of it to staff. But it was getting a bit tiring and such.
So that was a part of it on the personal. Part of it was, I just turned 60 in March.
Seth Adler: Happy birthday.
Ethan Nadelmann: Thank you. And I was looking forward to that, and thinking I'm still young enough and vigorous enough that I can think about what else I want to do with my life and not just retire retire.
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