How are you involved in the community?
I’ve been in business for over 25 years. I own Devine Retail Cannabis and CBD, which focuses on aligning nature with wellness. My passion for nature runs deeply. I involve myself in the community by not only investing in the people but the environment. I started a Facebook page called “Friends Of Smiley’s Pond,” to spearhead the efforts of making the dam safer for the wildlife. The video of me jumping into the dam to save the turtles has gone viral. “” I volunteer with the Berkshire environmental action team and their conservation efforts. I’m a member of Green trailways committee,Great Barrington Rotary Club, and Zorn Core Fitness. I’m also an Assistant Land Steward to the Egremont land trust
Why did you decide to get involved in the Blackshires Initiative?
I want to be a part of change in my community. I’m honored to be one of the founders of the new platform for social justice. My personal life story and journey have brought me here to this moment, to speak for those without a voice, and to unite and empower. My goal is to bridge the gap between races. My focus for Blackshire is to help develop business, fundraising and creating a self sustained BLACK economy here in the Berkshires and nationwide.
Why are you an expert in the field?
I have over 25 years of business and a unique background. I am the bridge between worlds based upon my unusual upbringing. I bring a sense of community, communication, collaboration and connections.
What do you do for the Blackshires?
I connect the proper individuals in regards to networking, business, and funding. My goal is to empower minorities in my community.
What’s your favorite thing about the Berkshires?
The Nature and fresh air.
What’s your favorite place to eat?
Bistro Box is my favorite restaurant. If not there at home.
What are you excited about right now?
I’m excited about creating self-sustaining BLACK economy in the Berkshires while
breaking cultural and racial barriers so we can all live amongst each other with respect.
Ari is the first BLACK cannabis distributor to receive his license in Berkshire County. In the state of Massachusetts, Ari is the fourth BLACK person to own and operate a cannabis distribution company. Ari has contributed much to his community, his environment, and Blackshires. Ari is a great example of what it means to make BLACK History Today. Go to Blackshires.net and sign up for our newsletter and event updates.