By TED MEBUST
ONEONTA – Ten years ago, New York State’s judicial system found Frances “Frankie” Russo guilty of a crime that has carried enormous cultural baggage in our country: the illegal sale of cannabis. Beyond the ramifications of pleading guilty to a class E nonviolent crime, Russo experienced social ostracization and a new limitation imposed on job prospects.
Despite these obstacles, he devoted his time to e-commerce, building a successful graphic design business. Over the last decade, Russo’s growing brand, Premium MFG, LLC, has received enough acclaim to be awarded by the New York State Office of Cannabis Management with one of the state’s first licenses to sell cannabis—legally.