Member Since 2020
Grasslands: A Journalism-Minded Agency
Named one of Fortune magazine’s 7 Most Powerful People in America’s Marijuana Industry, Ricardo Baca is a 20-year veteran journalist, Clio Awards juror, keynote speaker, TEDx veteran and cannabis futurist. He served as The Denver Post’s first-ever marijuana editor and founded news vertical The Cannabist, where he extensively covered the advent of adult-use cannabis and related issues across the country and around the world, as seen in the feature documentary Rolling Papers (Netflix). In 2016, Ricardo launched Grasslands: A Journalism-Minded Agency to work directly with business leaders in highly regulated industries, including cannabis, real estate and traditional healthcare. Named Marketer of the Year by AdCann in 2019, Ricardo has received numerous accolades for his trailblazing work throughout the media paradigm, and continues to columnize and host podcasts for a number of top publications. In August 2020, Grasslands was awarded the Denver Business Journal 2020 Small Business Award. Ricardo is considered to be the world’s first (and “most prestigious” according to Vice) marijuana editor; one of Brookings Institution’s 12 Key People to Watch in Marijuana Policy; one of Time magazine’s 140 best Twitter feeds; one of Sensi magazine’s 24 Cannabis Pioneers Who Matter. Ricardo is a leading cannabis / media / drug policy expert profiled by The New York Times, Poynter, The View, The Colbert Report, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me—and a trusted source by This Week With George Stephanopoulos, Buzzfeed, NPR’s All Things Considered, The Guardian, Esquire, Fast Company, Al Jazeera, BBC, Mashable, International Business Times and CBC. Ricardo was proud to guest on Pod Save America spin-off podcast Lovett or Leave It, and he’s also made numerous appearances on Adam Carolla’s podcast and Larry King’s talk show. He’s also an accidental champion of Doug Benson’s Doug Loves Movies podcast.
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Welcome to Grasslands, a journalism-minded agency specializing in Public Relations, Content, Social Media and Thought Leadership for businesses in highly regulated industries. But what does a qualifier like journalism-minded mean for a full-service agency? It means showing your work: Choosing direct communication and accountable activation instead of over-promising and under-delivering. It means more listening and note-taking, creating content and social media calendars, conducting in-depth client interviews, managing relationships with media and investors, understanding a brand’s North Star, ideating compatible mission / vision / values, respecting and honoring deadlines, weaving together compelling narratives and managing unforeseen crises when they arise. At Grasslands, we employ the ethical standards we learned in newsrooms as we elevate our clients through informed Public Relations, thoughtful Content Marketing, contextual Social Media, savvy Thought Leadership work, impactful Newsletter Campaigns and outstanding Event Execution. Gripping narratives. Professional communication. Expert advice. Experiential activation. And thoughtful strategy from a seasoned team that’s well-versed and legit experienced in all sides of the public relations / communications / media paradigm.