President and CEO Cutting Edge Hemp
Jim’s life from childhood until today has embarked on a journey of medical hardship. These medical barriers involving specialist doctors and hospital visits became a part of his lifestyle and daily routine. At a young age, little did Jim understand that his personal experiences and his desire to help people who have lost hope would be the beginning of a long journey.
Jim’s mother had been very sick for as long as he could remember, suffering from Crohn’s disease. This illness restrained them from enjoying the quality time together and kept Jim’s mother hospitalized in the Rochester Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. At the age of five, his father moved them to Belgium where, after a few years, she went into a coma for six months.
The joy and excitement after his mother came out of the coma did not last long as she suddenly passed away the night before being discharged. After this experience, he clearly remembers the distress and anxiety that anything related to hospitals and medical machines would make him feel.
I remember running down that hallway to my mother’s room, communicating quietly with my finger. The covers were over her head, and I thought she was sleeping. I remember my father grabbing my hand and forcing me into another room to later learn that my mother had passed away. -Jim Liebo
In 1986, after Jim’s fraternity years, Jim traveled to Texas for a friend’s wedding. Jim fell in love with the Lone Star State and met the most beautiful woman, Tina. Jim hastily decided to go back to Minnesota to sell all of his things to return to Dallas. After marrying Tina just seven months after, they started their own family and felt blessed when they had their firstborn.
Eric, Tina and Jim’s firstborn, was extraordinary. Child psychologist confirmed Eric’s high intellect at the age of three years old. Eric’s life, however, took a darker path, and Eric’s health became confusing when he developed a full-bodied rash. Medical Specialists diagnosed the outbreak as a simple virus, but the diagnosis was incorrect and led to the start of a series of constant seizures that continued escalating. Unsuccessfully, all of the drugs they tried either made Eric’s condition worse or were deemed useless for his unknown condition. Eric, only a toddler, was having seizures three to four times a week at the school, playground, and at home.
One day, Jim was away for work in Austin and got a phone call. He quickly anticipated the negative news and anxiously drove back to Dallas. When Jim arrived in Dallas, he found out that not only his son Eric had been transported to the hospital because of a seizure. Jim’s wife, Tina, and mother-in-law were hit by a big flatbed truck. Jim was conflicted between which hospital to visit first but finally decided on going where his wife was about to have surgery, and then visit his son.
After surgeries for removing the glass from my wife’s face. My wife’s additional surgeries to rebuild her nose. I was also making sure that my son was okay with his seizure; I sat down on the couch and couldn’t believe what happened. That was the time where I said: why me? -Jim Liebo
A few years went by, and Jim noticed Eric’s seizures were getting progressively worse. The doctors thought it was a rare disease called alternating hemiplegia, which mimics seizures but at around fifteen years of age, you gradually start to regress and die. Doctors discovered that the seizures were real and diagnosed that it was not a symptom of Eric’s illness. Eric had a massive grand mal seizure afterward that progressed into a stroke, destroying half of his brain. The doctor sat down Jim and Tina to explain he did not believe Eric would make it through the night. While Eric could barely recognize his family, and he would no longer talk or show facial expressions, he defeated the odds and survived.
Most people will never understand the feeling of what it’s like to have something one day and have it gone the next. The emotion that pours out of your body is so strong you would think it’s a tidal wave. -Jim Liebo
It is not an overstatement to assure that Jim’s life was a hustle. While he was traveling Monday through Friday working as an executive vice president for regional Sara Lee, Jim was also commuting on the weekends to spend time with his family. Eric had been transferred from Baylor Hospital to the Brown Schools in Austin. Jim would get home to Dallas on Friday night, take a few hours of sleep, and drive back to Austin be with him until Sunday morning. On Sunday, Jim drove to Dallas to spend time with his other kids. Then, when Sunday night came, Jim went back on an airplane journey for work. Jim continued this routine for almost four years.
His dedication to his children was evident, trying to share with them as much as he could and helping them achieve successful futures. Jim coached all of his kids’ sports between hockey and soccer, both his son and daughter’s hockey teams traveling all over the world. Jim’s commitment to them throughout their lives is only comparable to how proud Jim feels. His children are both graduating from the honors college program and having very successful careers.
Jim’s contribution to society is undeniable. Jim lead to becoming the president of the Frisco Soccer Association. He started the construction of the soccer stadium, trained coaches, and players for seven years by bringing in English Pro players to run clinics. Jim wrote the grants for the installation of lights for the soccer fields in town. By the end of his term, Jim’s efforts had paid off, having increased the participation from seven hundred to three thousand five hundred children in the organization. After which, Jim transitioned back to hockey, where he also coached from little kids through college for about thirty years, winning fifty-seven championships. Jim’s commitment came from the satisfaction of making a difference in children’s lives and being part of a support system for them.
In the same way, Jim has always been in the chase for new opportunities to help people. He participated in the development of handicap programs for kids and also created a foundation called “Everybody Wins” that would donate money from recycled equipment to the police & firefighters’ children that had mental issues and needed support.
After Eric’s stroke, Jim and his family have kept facing life’s medical challenges. Jim’s wife, Tina, fell into major depression. Tina was diagnosed and has battled with cancer three times already. The disease recently identified with the specific cancer gene continued. Tina on life support after a colonoscopy resulting in aspiration pneumonia. During which Jim’s unbelievable near-death experiences started in 1996 when he got rear-ended by a car going a hundred miles an hour. Jim severely broke his neck and needed to get urgent surgery to have his neck redone. In 2004, right after Enron damaged his company. Jim broke his neck again and severed his spine. The recovery was way harder than Jim had expected, taking him three years to walk, and a lot of effort to relearn everything from the neck down.
I can tell you exactly what a baby goes through when they’re learning to walk. There were times that I looked in the mirror and didn’t think that the top half of my body was connected to my lower half. -Jim Liebo
After Jim’s most recent surgery in 2019, he will need to undergo sixth neck surgery to stabilize it since it is breaking down again. Jim’s surgeries did not get any easier as the pain continues, as well as the additional complications following the accidents. Jim shakes like those with Parkinson’s, and no western medicine would work for him. One of his neurosurgeons suggested trying marijuana, but he vehemently refused since he thought the influence of medical marijuana was not the cure.
Jim debated cannabis and did extensive research on marijuana over the years. Because of his dream of being able to walk his daughter down the aisle, he thought to himself to try something new to stop his shakes.
Jim tried cannabis before attending one of his daughter’s most prestigious tournaments. Cannabis worked, Jim’s shakes stopped but, still doubtful, he thought it was the placebo effect. However, after the cannabis effect passed, Jim started trembling again; it only took a hit of marijuana for the shaking to stop. At this moment in time, he understood that cannabis works. Jim self-administered cannabis to something since Jim did not want to keep taking all those western medical pills. The Fentanyl, Oxycotin, Vikadins, and Percets were implicating other physical bodily harms.
Jim moved forward to doing extensive research for almost four years. He decided to put companies together to create an organization in California, as well as starting his radio show to educate the public and traveling to meet people in the industry. Jim’s ambition began to produce CBD and hemp products without the THC. These products would improve people’s quality of life; Jim’s sister Crohn’s disease, Eric for his epileptic seizures, Jim’s daughter for her panic attacks, and Jim for chronic pain.
Despite the bumpy road and the difficulty, the cannabis industry involves, Jim’s determination persists. Jim’s laboratory has developed the only testing procedure in the world to be able to look at the CBD receptors of the body. Jim has clear objectives such as studying a different perspective of chronic pain issues in the population. Developing programs with veterans for PTSD, bringing jobs to the communities, and ultimately making a difference in the world by helping anybody who needs it.
I started this company because I wanted to make a difference in the world, not just a difference for myself.-Jim Liebo