Kathy Casey of PureKana: “The space is crowded, define your lane”

Sleep: Sleep is fundamental to good health. Exercise: A slow body, gets slower. Prioritizing youfirst is mission critical here when the days are crowded. Diet: A hard one for so many to maintain. With so many great platforms out there, find one that is sustainable for you. Support System: We are a product of our […]

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Sleep: Sleep is fundamental to good health. Exercise: A slow body, gets slower. Prioritizing youfirst is mission critical here when the days are crowded. Diet: A hard one for so many to maintain. With so many great platforms out there, find one that is sustainable for you. Support System: We are a product of our environment. Surround yourself with a team that brings you joy and has your best interest in mind Curiosity: Wellness is both body and soul. A curious mind will inform better decisions and experiences.


As a part of my series about the women in wellness, I had the pleasure of interviewing Kathy Casey, CEO of PureKana

Kathy Casey is the CEO of PureKana. She is a proven sales executive leader and general manager with over 30 years of experience in the CPG industry, with a track-record of building profitable businesses. Her career includes leadership roles with established blue-chip companies such as Procter & Gamble, Kellogg, and numerous startup companies.


Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Our readers would love to “get to know you” better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?

I grew up in a large family raised with Midwestern values. Those values drive my decisions today when building brands or developing high-performing teams. After 30+ years at companies like Procter & Gamble and Kellogg, I am now a corporate decision-maker in this ever-evolving space of plant-based wellness. My entry into the CBD space is driven by the mission of enabling wellness authentically every day for consumers on their health journey.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career? What were the main lessons or takeaways from that story?

I was demoted three times! Over the course of your career, whether it be restructures, acquisitions, or new managers picking their teams, change is inevitable. Careers are not ladders, but zig zags and turn-arounds. Just do your best work and it will all work out over time.

Can you share a story about the biggest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Ask for help. It is not that you cannot figure it out on your own, but asking for help will get you there faster and increase your productivity. People innately want to help.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

This is an easy one: Lisa Crosby. The transition from college to my first professional role at Procter & Gamble was indeed a wake-up call. Lisa was my first trainer and eventually a great friend. I have no doubt the fundamentals she taught me placed me on a different trajectory for success. Today, I remain grateful.

Ok perfect. Now let’s jump to our main focus. When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?

My entry into the CBD space is driven by the mission of enabling wellness authentically every day for consumers on their health journey. At PureKana, we use nature and science to provide support in the need-states of sleep, pain, calm, energy, and immunity. If just one person can have piece of mind from plants vs. pharmaceuticals, that is success.

Can you share your top five “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better wellbeing? Please give an example or story for each.

  • Sleep: Sleep is fundamental to good health.
  • Exercise: A slow body, gets slower. Prioritizing you first is mission critical here when the days are crowded.
  • Diet: A hard one for so many to maintain. With so many great platforms out there, find one that is sustainable for you.
  • Support System: We are a product of our environment. Surround yourself with a team that brings you joy and has your best interest in mind
  • Curiosity: Wellness is both body and soul. A curious mind will inform better decisions and experiences.

If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?

As I have chatted with many health professionals over the years, the one thing you can do to influence your overall wellness is to maintain a healthy weight. Weight gain, as we now know, drives a diverse set of disease (i.e. diabetes, high blood pressure).

What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started” and why?

  1. The space is crowded, define your lane.
  2. The FDA will thoughtfully move at its own pace: Win with that in mind.
  3. Build a new network in a new industry. Their advice will be invaluable.
  4. Be patient. Sometimes progress has its own clock
  5. Line up your finances to ensure you can fuel your growth

Sustainability, veganism, mental health and environmental changes are big topics at the moment. Which one of these causes is dearest to you, and why?

I am passionate about mental health as it is often held in great secrecy by many that it impacts. Anxiety, stress, and depression are often drivers of why consumers use CBD. At PureKana, our mission is to enable wellness authentically every day. With that intent, we continue to innovate aggressively in this space.

What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?

Instagram: PureKana; Facebook: PureKana; Twitter: @purekanapremium. For company news, we are publicly traded on the Toronto Exchange under the symbol: PKAN.

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