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Lisa L. Pittman

Of Counsel


Lisa is of counsel in the Cannabis Business Law practice in the Austin office.  Throughout Lisa’s 20-year career, she has litigated and tried disputes relating to labor & employment, breach of contract, commercial banking, fraud, fiduciary duty, construction defect and injury, deceptive trade practices, premises liability, professional liability, and products liability. Lisa also possesses extensive expertise in complex commercial insurance coverage matters, having both defended insurance companies and advocated for policy holders in commercial and residential property and life insurance matters. Lisa is also a prolific publisher of peer reviewed publications and frequent public speaker.

After 15 years of practice, Lisa almost left the law to open a wellness center for women to consult about plant-based therapies and nutrition, as part of a life-long passion for children’s health that began with her volunteer work as a teenager at Texas Children’s Hospital. In 2014, Lisa read the testimony of Texas mothers with children with epilepsy, detailing the treatment and life choices they had to make for their children’s conditions. This led her to learn more the cannabis plant’s other healing properties. In pursuit of this fact-finding mission, she attended a nationwide cannabis conference in Denver, Colorado in January 2015. This alerted her to the fact that cannabis as medicine was sweeping the country, that there were many legitimate studies, discoveries, and breakthroughs in other countries, which convinced her to involve herself in changing the laws in Texas and assisting those who wanted to provide such medicine or otherwise join the industry.

Lisa unwittingly found a way to merge her passion for wellness with her profession as a business attorney by turning her practice to focusing on the legal cannabis and hemp industries. After advocating for medical cannabis in Texas for the 2015 Texas Compassionate Use Act and representing license applicants under the Program in 2017 and advocating for expansion to the Program, Lisa moved to Colorado to learn the specialty of practicing law in a legal regulated environment for cannabis and hemp, and to earn her Colorado Bar license. Lisa worked with a former DEA Task Force Commander and Narcotics Prosecutor to learn the federal government’s stance on cannabis legalization and enforcement to counsel clients on federal risk mitigation and local law enforcement issues. She also became immersed in the boom in the hemp industry, as the 2014 Farm Bill’s legalization of industrial hemp was coming to full fruition in Colorado at the time of her move.

From her participation in the nascent cannabis and hemp industry, Lisa began to represent a broad range of clients from investors to ancillary service and product providers to “plant touching” companies. Some of these clients have now expanded into other countries. In pursuit of becoming a leader and authority in this area, Lisa has become familiar with the many challenges facing cannabis and hemp businesses, such as tax, banking, insurance, and regulatory compliance issues, and she has grown a vast network of experts to assist in these areas. Lisa keeps abreast of the evolving laws, news and deals occurring in the cannabis and hemp industries across the world on a daily basis, and is frequently interviewed by media herself. She was selected to be a mentor to the prestigious Canopy Boulder cannabis business incubator/investor program.

From her extensive work in defending or taking a position on a contract in litigation, Lisa is adept at negotiation and contract drafting, and her a broad base of knowledge in many legal areas provides her the ability to give all around business and legal advice to clients in the cannabis and hemp industries, such as investment and growth strategies, as well as risk management and mitigation to avoid civil litigation, criminal prosecution, or regulatory violations. Lisa has assisted cannabis and hemp license applicants in multiple states across the country, including guiding Louisiana State University through its rollout of Louisiana’s medical marijuana program. A native Texan, Lisa’s work in the legalization movement in Texas has earned her the title, “The First Lady of Texas Cannabis Law.”

Lisa is most proud of being a thought leader in the American Bar Association (ABA), a nationwide membership network of elite attorneys. A year in the making, she presented its first cannabis law Continuing Legal Education (CLE) course at its annual meeting in New York City in August 2017. She is Vice-Chair of the Business Litigation, Product Liability, and Corporate Counsel Committees of the Tort, Trial, and Insurance Law Section (TIPS). She is a founding Steering Committee member in the recently formed Cannabis Law & Policy Task Force Committee, created by the ABA after the success of her groundbreaking CLE. This Task Force led the ABA to create a standing Cannabis Law & Policy Committee, on which Lisa serves as the Chair of Publications. Since 2016, Lisa has been leading the ABA to acknowledge the importance of cannabis and hemp law as subject matter areas, and in September 2019, the ABA presented its first standalone two-day cannabis and hemp law seminar in Chicago, for which she is a Program Chair.

Lisa also writes annual articles tracking the evolution of contract law across the country for the TIPS Law Journal, served on its Editorial Board for three years, and currently serves as the Chair of Publications for two committees. She graduated from the American Bar Association’s nomination-based biennial Leadership Academy in 2015, and the Austin Bar Association’s Leadership Academy in 2016. Lisa also graduated from the highly selective Leadership Austin, Essentials Class of 2017, an organization that brings together 55 civic leaders each year to meet for a whole day once a month to tackle the challenges confronting the exponential growth of Austin.

Lisa is also passionate about empowering women in business. In 2012, she founded a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in Houston to hold events to promote referrals, networking, and mentoring among female professionals of various industries. Executive Moms’ Society’s first meeting hosted a then unknown Brené Brown, and in 2017, Sheryl Sandberg.

Admitted
  • The State Bar of Texas, 2001
  • The State Bar of Colorado, 2018
  • The United States District Courts for the Western, Eastern, Northern & Southern Districts of Texas, 2004-2005
  • The United States District Court of Colorado, 2018
Education
  • J.D., 2001, University of Houston Law Center; Dean’s Merit List; Top 1/3, Moot Court Finalist.
  • B.A. English, 1997, University of Texas at Austin; Minor Psychology and Spanish (fluent).
Affiliations
  • The Texas Bar Association, 2001 – Present
  • The Colorado Bar Association, 2018 – Present
  • College of the State Bar of Texas, 2009—Present
  • The American Bar Association – Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section, 2002 – Present
  • Cannabis Law & Policy Committee, Vice-Chair of Publications, 2019 – Present
  • Cannabis Law & Policy Task Force, 2018-2019: Steering Committee Founding Member
  • Cannabis Law & Policy Committee CLE Program Chair, “From Regs to Riches,” September 19-20, Chicago, Illinois
  • Business Litigation Committee, Vice Chair of Publications, 2012 – Present
  • Corporate Counsel Committee, Vice Chair, 2015 – Present
  • Product Liability Committees, Vice-Chair, 2015 – Present
  • Solo and Small Firm Task Force, member, 2019-2020
  • Author, Editorial Board, Managing Editor, 2006 – Present: Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Law Journal
  • Leadership Academy, Class of 2014-2015, biennial nomination-based program.
  • Austin Bar Association, 2002—Present
  • Travis County Women Lawyers Association, 2014—Present
  • U.S. Hemp Farming Alliance, 2018—present
  • Texas Department of Agriculture Industrial Hemp Advisory Council, 2020—present
Speaking Engagements
  • Introduction to Cannabis & Hemp Law & Licensing, American Bar Association, April 30, 2020, Nashville, TN
  • Discussion of Texas Hemp Program with Sid Miller, EarthX/HempX, April 25, 2020
  • Cannabis Kick-Off at SxSW, March 18, 2020, for Texas NORML, March 18, 2020
  • Hemp Law for Bank Regulators, March 16, 2020 to NASCUS, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Update on Texas and Federal Hemp Rules, Foundation for Informed Texas, February 22, 2020, Fort Worth, TX, (video)
  • Expert Live Q & A:  Texas Hemp Growers, February 22, 2020, El Paso, TX
  • Industrial Hemp: Law, Economics, and Application, February 27, 2020, Austin, Texas
  • Expert Live Q & A: Texas Hemp Growers, January 11, 2020, McAllen, TX
  • Expert Live Q & A: HempBizDaily Conference at MJBizCon, December 10, 2019, Las Vegas, NV
  • Hemp Hurdles: On the Farm and Off the Farm, HempBizDaily Conference at MJBizCon, December 10, 2019, Las Vegas, NV
  • Legal Update on Cannabis and Hemp Regulations, to Texas NORML, November 6, 2019, Austin, TX
  • Legal Issues for Attorneys Representing Convenience Stores and CBD Retailers, Petroleum Marketing Attorneys’ Meeting – American Bar Association, October 11, 2019, Houston, TX
  • From Regs to Riches, Navigating the Rapidly Emerging Fields of Cannabis & Hemp Law, American Bar Association, September 19-20, 2019, Chicago, IL
  • New Texas Hemp Rules for Texas CBD Retailers, Southwest Food & Fuel Summit, September 12, 2019, San Antonio, TX
  • Hemp Business Basics, Foundation for an Informed Texas, August 31, 2019, Austin, TX
  • Texas Marijuana Policy Conference 2019—Regulatory Compliance Under Texas Compassionate Use Program, August 30, 2019, Austin, TX
  • Texas Hemp Compliance, State of Hemp in Texas – Coastal Bend Region Symposium, August 1, 2019, Corpus Christi, TX
  • Cannabis and Hemp Laws in Texas and the U.S., Capital Area Paralegals Association, May 29, 2019, Austin, TX
  • CBD in Texas: A Cash Crop for C-Stores, The Southwest Food & Fuel Association, May 16, 2019, Fort Worth, TX
  • Current Issues in Cannabis Law & Policy – The 2014 & 2018 Farm Bills, Hemp & CBD, American Bar Association, May 3, 2019, New York City, NY
  • Fireside Chat with Texas Agricultural Commissioner Sid Miller – Status of Texas Hemp Laws and the Legislative Hurdles, EarthX/HempX, April 27, 2019, Dallas, TX
  • Evolution of Cannabis and Hemp Law Across the U.S., Boulder Cannabis Group, April 24, 2019, Boulder, CO
  • State and Federal Hemp Legalities, Texas Hempstalk, March 16, 2019, Dripping Springs, TX
  • The 2018 Farm Bill and What it Means for Texas, Texas NORML’s Cannabis Kickoff SxSW Event, March 13, 2019, Austin, TX
  • Legalized Possession and Use of Cannabis: A Legal and Ethical Dilemma for Healthcare Organizations; American College of Healthcare Executives at Texas State University, November 9, 2018, San Marcos, TX
  • Getting Out of the Weeds: What you Need to Know About the New World of Marijuana Regulation, Oklahoma Annual Bar Association Meeting, November 7, 2018, Tulsa, OK
  • Cannabis Issues Every Realtor Should Know, May 24, 2018, Boulder, CO
  • Texas Medical Cannabis Science and Law, April 19, 2018, at the Houston Bar Association Houston, TX
  • Legal Discussion: Cannabis in Veterinary Medicine; Veterinary Cannabis Symposium, November 20, 2017, Denver, CO
  • Cannabis Industry Insights – The Risk Management and Industry Challenges, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, September 25, 2017, Denver, CO
  • The Trajectory of Marijuana Law and How it Will Affect Your Practice, American Bar Association Annual Meeting, August 11, 2017, New York City, NY
  • Legal Perspectives on Medical Cannabis and Intellectual Property, Canntelligence, July 27, 2017, Houston, TX
  • Ask a Cannabis Lawyer, Southwest Cannabis Conference, April 22, 2016, Fort Worth, TX
  • The Status of Texas Cannabis Law, The Hemp & Garden Show, March 16, 2017, Austin, TX
  • Federal and State Cannabis Law for Physicians, Healthways Continuing Medical Education, January 7, 2017, Dallas, TX
  • Texas Cannabis Law, Texas Green Rushers, January 20, 2017, Austin, TX
  • Texas Marijuana Laws and Interactions with Law Enforcement, Texas Veterans Conference Legal Panel, October 15, 2016, Austin, TX
Publications
  • “Legalization of Cannabis in Mexico Could Be Big For US Markets,” Hemp Industry Daily, March 20, 2020
  • “Limiting Your Liability,” MJBiz Daily Magazine, March 1, 2020
  • New Laws in Texas for Hemp, Austin Lawyer, February 1, 2020
  • New Frontiers: Hemp Law & Litigation, Business Litigation Newsletter, American Bar Association, December 19, 2019
  • “Hemp CBD: What Seniors Should Know,” Senior Law Division, American Bar Association, December 18, 2019
  • “Civil RICO & Cannabis Coast to Coast,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 54-2, Spring 2019
  • “Cannabis Law and Policy Task Force: Serving a Pioneering Industry,” The Brief, American Bar Association, April 24, 2019
  • “The Hemp Revolution Will Not be Televised … Yet,” Tort Source, American Bar Association, December 11, 2018
  • “Battle of the Bills,” Law Firm Blog Post, August 10, 2018
  • “The Grass is Actually Greener – Insight From a Cannabis In-House Lawyer,” Corporate Counsel Committee Newsletter, American Bar Association, July 7, 2017
  • “Marijuana Business Litigation – Special Considerations,” Business Litigation Committee Newsletter, American Bar Association, November 1, 2016
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation-Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 51-2, Spring 2016
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation-Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 50-2, Winter 2015
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation- Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 46-2, Winter 2011
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation- Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 45-2, Spring 2010
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation- Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 44-2, Winter 2009
  • “Recent Developments in Business Litigation- Breach of Contract,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal, American Bar Association, Vol. 43-3, Spring 2008
  • Austin Lawyer, Contributing Editor, 2002-2005
Interviews/Press
Testimony
  • Texas Department of Health Services, December 17, 2019
  • Texas Medical Marijuana House Subcommittee, April 11, 2019, Austin, TX
  • Texas House Bill 2107 (Medical Marijuana) Public Health Committee Hearing, May 2, 2017, Austin, TX
  • Texas Department of Public Safety, Compassionate Use Program Hearing on Adoption of Final Rules, February 22, 2017, Austin, TX
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Locations

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Houston, Texas 77046
Phone: 713.651.0111
Fax: 713.651.0220
Toll Free: 800.535.2701

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