Stephanie Smith is the founder of Industrial Partner Group
Originally Posted on stephanie-steph-smith-pacific-palisades-los-angeles.gonevis.com on March 19 2021
The mother of four, a professional bohemian, psilocybin advocate, and birthday party expert was raised in Minneapolis by a single working mother. She dreamt of becoming an artist and still nurses her passion for painting. She studied marketing in Boston. Her artistic eye to change houses in the Phoenix area helped her move to Southern California in 2005. She attended UCLA’s Anderson’s MBA program. Currently, Stephanie lives in the Pacific Palisades neighborhoods of Los Angeles.
Stephanie is the founder of Industrial Partner Group, a firm that buys and develops custom-built industrial and commercial real estate in Southern California. IPG is a leading commercial, industrial, and cannabis real estate development firm. IPG invests in properties that require repositioning and renovation to stabilize tenancy and rental income. IPG invests in underperforming industrial properties that are either too small or too labor-intensive for large scale private equity investors. IPG was established in 2009 when Smith was astonished by the cannabis bidding war that followed after listing one of her warehouses on Craigslist. She thought the property was suited to be a laundromat only to have an odd request from a potential client who asked if he could use the property to grow cannabis.
“I thought I just had a one-off, odd tenant. I didn’t have an understanding of what happened in the market because obviously, no one was talking about it,” she says. After enjoying the experience of leasing the property to the first cannabis tenant, she carried out some research. She started to increase her portfolio to include properties that were more cannabis-friendly. While using her 15 years of experience in real estate development and her passion for the environment, Steph promotes IPG activities and projects that aim at green building, solar, and reclamation systems.
According to her, relationships are more valuable than the amount of money she can earn from her property. She says, “I don’t necessarily lease to the people who are offering the most for properties, but to those who are going to be most successful.” Besides, when leasing, Stephanie conducts a thorough selection process to ensure that she leases her property to people who are experienced and professional rather than those who offer the most for the property. She seeks to identify who will the most successful.
Before leasing, Stephanie ensures that the property is sufficiently supplied with power. She claims that power service is key to the building and is always in control of power service. Besides, she encourages her tenants to apply for licenses in cities and countries where cannabis businesses are legal. She also ensures that her tenants build-out to code even in areas where no regulations are written.
Stephanie is a mother of finds and is pleased of being the biggest cannabis landlord in California. She confirms that she regards herself simply as a “landlord” because she is not involved with the marijuana businesses.
Stephanie found an opportunity in her real estate business to seek social justice and become part of pushing the marijuana issue forward. As a result, she became a cannabis advocate for Cannabis law-reform and regulation and the use of Psilocybin for personal, medical, therapeutic, spiritual, and religious use. Stephanie Smith openly describes herself as a Cannabis activist who is politically active in challenging government legislation and protecting civil rights at the highest level. Even though she advocates for various social issues, some mainstream media outlets have described Stephanie Smith as Cannabis “Queen Pin.” She feels that the titled is best suited to describe her ability to run a successful business, raise and take care of a family of five children and her ability to organize epic children’s birthday parties…not necessarily Cannabis retail outlet zoning laws.
Smith also maintains she is just a landlord who leases her buildings to marijuana cultivators and has nothing to do with the activities that occur inside her properties. However, she has acknowledged being an advocate for the commercial sale of legalized weed. She has led efforts to place legalization measures on several city ballots and is actively suing several cities, including Colton, over their cannabis policies.
Stephanie has worked tirelessly to make her firm one of the largest Cannabis landlords in California and to support the civil rights of her tenants, legal Cannabis growers, and retailers. Steph does not see herself as a cannabis queen but as a real estate developer who works part-time fighting corruption of different kinds. Steph has sued cities several times and won the cases. Coming from a poor background, Steph has a love for work and is willing and determined to fight for what is right. She believes that she has the responsibility of a woman to fight corruption for future generations.
Apart from being a renowned real estate developer in a controversial industry, Stephanie is passionate about the less fortunate and women-related issues. She is a member of the Pacific Palisades Women’s Club, a non-profit organization that unites energetic and socially minded women in friendship to serve others and the community through philanthropic activities and to safeguard the clubhouse facility for use community and future generation. She is also a member of the Policy Committee at Everychild Foundation. The organization aims at easing the suffering of children in the greater Los Angeles area, whether due to disease, disability, abuse, neglect, or poverty. Step’s daily schedule revolves around when to pick her children from school. She names one of her property-holding business after her daughter, Bubba Likes Tortilla.