CANNAINVESTOR Magazine October / November 2016 - Page 135

Brian Ritchie, CEO

Brian Andrew Ritchie, born in 1971, grew up in Salem, New Hampshire, enjoying long summers in Maine at the family’s vacation cabin on Little Ossipee Lake in Waterboro, Maine. As the son of an English teacher, Brian his brother Brad and mother Linnea took summers off at the lake, being joined by Brian’s father Norman on weekends. Norman Ritchie owned a Baskin Robbins Ice Cream store, as his second career, after twenty years as the Chief Executive Officer for Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. Throughout Norman’s life he pursued an interesting hobby, collecting the autographs of the person(s) featured on TIME Magazine by sending the cover to personalities with a cover letter requesting their signature. Over sixty years he collected over 1,100 autographed covers (images and list can be found at www.normstime.com, a website Brian created to honor his father’s lifelong hobby.)

At an early age, Brian showed signs that he had inherited his father’s leadership, design and artistic talents, and all-around ambition. At age 11 he was presented with a New Hampshire state award in the form of a plaque, for his design of an anti-pollution poster contest sponsored by the US Dept. of Environmental Protection. At age 13 he was the MVP for the local Boys’ Club in Swimming. In High School he founded the Executive Club, leading a team of ambitious students as President, to canvas local business toward advertising dollars for the school yearbook. He also competed as Tri-Captain of the NH State Champion Gymnastics Team, and was a pole vault competitor for the Track team, also a State Champion team. In his Senior year, Brian was one of five students chosen by the faculty to attend a year-long State-sponsored enrichment program called the “Challenge Program for the Gifted and Talented,” hosted by Rivier University. Challenging topics were tackled by a grouping of the most promising students from each High School in the state, in an effort to encourage problem solving skills.

Brian earned a BA from the University of New Hampshire, where he studied English and Communication as a dual major, with a focus on Advertising and Marketing. Upon arrival his freshman year, he tried his hand at springboard diving for the Division 1 UNH Swimming and Diving Team, as a walk-on, having never competed in the sport of Diving prior. Through his perseverance of always climbing back up the ladder, his diving attempts represented the highest degree of difficulty for the UNH squad by his senior year. While not practicing, Brian followed his father’s footsteps as a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity, (ATO) where he served as Alumni Relations Chairman.

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