Brands Entrepreneurship Mar 25, 2016

Kind Pain Management Dispensary, Where Compassion Comes Before Capitalism

When you walk into Kind Pain Management, it may feel as though you have been transported from the shopping center parking lot outside into a tropical oasis.  The store’s beachy decor, complete with bamboo, tiki masks, and paintings of the ocean, is representative of the store’s management team,  who met in Costa Rica.  Eric Crowe, who opened the store at its original site on Colfax Avenue in 2009, met Terrance Branch, Chad Bronkie, and Tom Ford while on a trip.  It was a happy accident because in the impromptu gathering, the four discovered a mutual passion for healing patients through cannabis and Branch, Bronkie, and Ford joined Crowe in running Kind Pain Management in 2011.

IMG_4826Three months after Crowe opened the dispensary, the store moved to its current location on Youngfield Street in Lakewood, Colorado.  It has two grows: one on-site and one downtown.  While it’s not by choice – Kind Pain Management would love to open a retail location if Lakewood law allowed – the medical-only nature of the store makes it a haven for patients who treat their illnesses with cannabis.  The store’s profits are driven not by making a quick buck off of out-of-state tourists, but through repeat customers who return for the excellent customer service.   According to store manager Ross Overacker, the dispensary’s success is due to the fact that its employees are motivated by more than just a paycheck.  “The staff really cares, we have a much, much more personal connection with our patients at Kind Pain Management,” he explained.  The staff calls twenty to thirty patients daily to let them know about the new products that come into the store, whether it be their favorite strain or a specific extract they have been looking for.  Overacker, who has worked at other dispensaries previously, said he has never seen that kind of patient relationship before.  The staff will also put products on hold and offer discounts to help patients who depend on marijuana for medical treatment.

IMG_4830Though it has a variety of products, Kind Pain Management is especially well-known for its concentrates, which are having a moment in Colorado.  According to Overacker, concentrates are more popular among natives than out-of-state tourists.  Locals are more informed on and familiar with the product, which is ideal for patients who want to feel marijuana’s healing effects but don’t want to say, smoke an entire joint.   Since the shop is medical only and requires a state-issued medical marijuana card for purchase, its customers are exclusively from Colorado, making their focus on high-quality concentrates a natural choice.

The owners and managers at Kind Pain Management often discuss the possibility of opening a retail shop in another neighborhood that allows recreational marijuana.  Overacker said that he hopes that in the future, legalization will allow Kind Pain Management to serve patients in other geographic areas, whether it be within areas like Lakewood in Colorado or in other states where it is still prohibited.  His hopes, though, come with caution: “I hope it remains as independent as possible,” he told me.  “I would hate to see major money buy out our need and desire to help patients.”