Dakota West Coast is a Black woman-owned cannabis company founded in 2018 in Oakland, California.
Iowa Robinson, its owner and CEO, has risen from the ashes of the failed War on Drugs. Robinson is proud to be Oakland-grown and Oakland born. Dakota West Coast’s entire product lineup is locally grown and manufactured in East Oakland. Robinson only uses only the top nutrients and cultivars for the brand’s premium, indoor flower. “Our mission is to promote equality and inclusion in the cannabis industry while giving back to the less fortunate,” Robinson says.
After the untimely death of its founder’s mother and brother, she was compelled to build a cannabis industry legacy for her family. Reeling from the harsh after-effects of the War on Drugs, Dakota West Coast’s perseverance makes the brand a shining example to other Equity brand owners and wishful entrepreneurs who want to be a part of the industry. “No matter where you come from, you can be a boss and not just a consumer,” says Robinson.
Robinson has been a cannabis cultivator for 5 years and worked as the sole female cultivator for California cannabis brand NUG for a year and a half. She came to the cannabis industry from a Political Science background. “I am one of very few Equity African American cultivators in Oakland,” says Robinson. Today, she is a full-time cultivator for Dakota West Coast, working hard to build her cannabis company from the ground up.
Robinson has worked hard to build her company despite the odds. “Being greatly displaced by the War on Drugs, I have had to push through,” she says. “I’ve had many obstacles in life living in East Oakland. Even though my mother was in and out of jail due to drug charges, and my father was not present, I was able to start a black-owned and woman-owned cannabis company that thrives.” Dakota West Coast also actively seeks other equity candidates for employment in her company, and currently donates time to help feed the homeless in her community each week. “Our mission is to promote equality and inclusion in the cannabis industry while giving back to the less fortunate,” the founder says.