MEET THE TEAM

lola the dog
LOLA
THE FACE

Lola is an 11-year-old rescue, model, diva and philanthropist. Her intense noise phobias were part of the inspiration for developing Lolahemp. She is an active user of the product and is a strong advocate of the benefits of cannabis for pets. Lola enjoys tanning, leading our philanthropic efforts and bossing around the team.

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joey difrancesco
JOEY DIFRANCESCO
FOUNDER

Joey founded Lolahemp in 2018 after the success his own dog (Lola) experienced with hemp oil for her debilitating stress and anxiety. He has now made it his mission to educate pet owners everywhere on the benefits of holistic health and the therapeutic properties of the hemp plant. Joey is the visionary behind the brand, managing the director level team members and keeping the company's course. He enjoys long city walks with Lola, traveling with his wife Christa and spending time with family.

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max our contributing writer
MAXWELL MARTINSON
CONTENT DIRECTOR

Max is the content director and a contributing writer for Lolahemp. He loves deep-diving into all things pet-related and has been writing professionally for more than 7 years. He prides himself on offering useful, trusted, and well-researched information for thousands of pet lovers. In his free time, he’s usually curled up relaxing with his cat Herbie.

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NICOLE WANNER, DVM
VETERINARIAN

Dr. Nicole Wanner graduated from the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine in 2018. Currently, she is an academic research veterinarian studying CBD and DNA. Her research has been published in trusted international research journals. Dr. Wanner is passionate about pet wellness and has professional interests in genetics, behavior, and healthy aging. In her free time, she enjoys hiking and reading sci-fi novels. She shares her home with her husband Evan and their two mischievous rescue cats, Sylvie and Nemo.

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Shalina's bio picture
SHALINA CHEN
BRAND DESIGNER

Shalina is a brand and graphic designer who is passionate about dog rescue and helping brands thrive & evolve through visual storytelling. Her career started in apparel design, then shifted to branding & marketing with a focus in the furniture, lifestyle & pet goods industries. Based out of Park City, you can find her shredding the slopes when she's not cuddling with her two rescue pit-mix rescues. As Lolahemp's lead brand designer, Shalina focuses on creating visual concepts and designs that align with the Lolahemp brand identity consistently across all mediums.

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dr elizabeth racine, veterinarian
ELIZABETH RACINE, DVM
VETERINARIAN

Dr. Elizabeth Racine is a small animal veterinarian with a passion for improving the lives of pets. She has worked in the veterinary field in various roles for more than a decade, with professional interests in behavior, nutrition, and palliative care. As a writer, her work has been featured by several world-renowned pet health and wellness brands. Dr. Racine shares her home with her dog Dasher - a beagle with his own storied career training new veterinary students - and her trouble-making orange cat named Julius.

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Image of woman with two dogs in her house
MARISSA SOARES
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE MANAGER

Marissa has been a veterinary technician since 2015 and graduated from Texas A&M University in 2018. When she's not overseeing the Lolahemp customer experience, you can find her traveling or planning her next trip. As of 2023, her favorite obsession is her human baby boy, Liam. She's also a dog mom to two large and very hairy dogs, Kaya & Sammy.

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Joseph Mortensen SEO strategist
JOSEPH MORTENSEN
SEO STRATEGIST

Joseph is a search engine optimization consultant who is passionate about helping companies grow organically and sustainably. He currently lives in Salt Lake City, and when not thinking about SEO, you can find him in the mountains or playing his guitar. He also enjoys spending time at the park with his Chiweenie, Maple.

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crystal litzenberger
CRYSTAL LITZENBERGER
CERTIFIED VET TECH & CLIENT CARE

Since 2003, Crystal has worked in the veterinary field as a technician helping educate people on how to care for their furry family members. Her experience has grown from nursing and hospital management in general practice to working as a technician in rehabilitation and emergency hospitals throughout New Jersey and New York City. Over the years one of Crystal’s main goals has been to help people care for their pets in the most natural way possible. Helping find people options for more holistic routes to treat their pet’s has always been a major interest for her.

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jay o'keefe
JAY O'KEEFE
CANNABIS CONSULTANT

For five years, Jay worked at a medical cannabis dispensary in North San Diego. The shop cultivated their own high CBD plants (ACDC) and created CBD tinctures and Rick Simpson Oil for their terminally ill patrons. During that time, Jay was educated on how cannabidiol interacts with the body. Eventually, he opened a delivery service and for three years supplied medicinal cannabis products for folks with cancer and other chronic or debilitating conditions. Jay leveraged this industry experience to help launch Lolahemp for pets and he continues to be a thought leader and expert in the industry.

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emily curtiss
EMILY CURTISS
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

Emily Curtiss’ career has spanned many different industries. She started in the music business and then somehow made her way in to Office Furniture, Co-working Spaces and now, Cannabis. Emily oversees everything operations for Lolahemp. Her second favorite thing in the world is keeping everything organized and preparing for any potential problems that may arise. Her first favorite thing is her ShiChi puppy, Chip!

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tristan thomas
TRISTAN THOMAS
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER

Tristan is a social media addict and pet lover who gets just as excited about taking her dog on adventures as she does experimenting with a new Instagram feature. Whether it’s sharing facts about an interesting hike on social media or promoting the benefits of CBD, she loves creating engaging content that connects with an audience and makes an impact.

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chris duflo
CHRIS DUFLO
DIRECTOR OF TECHNOLOGY

Chris Duflo has spent the past 8 years helping some of the biggest organizations in the Americas solve complex business problems with elegant technological solutions. He currently lives in San Diego, maintaining and setting the direction for Lolahemp.com. He and his wife have a 12-year-old Maltipoo, Kai, who enjoys naps and short walks on the beach.

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josh offman, sales consultant
JOSH OFFMAN
SALES AND BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Josh Offman is a seasoned sales consultant with over 8 years of experience in the financial services, aviation, and CPG industries. Based out of Los Angeles, Josh leads brick-and-mortar retail sales and new business development. He owns a 4-year-old Pit Bull rescue and has a strong passion for animal rescue and animal rights advocacy.

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