Shannon Swantek is a Senior Quality Assurance Chemist with Vitale Scientific Associates, LLC (VSA) who holds broad knowledge of the environmental and cannabis industries. She has a robust regulatory background that includes 8 years of experience performing audits nationally to the NELAC Institute (TNI) and ISO 17025:2005 Standards in environmental, food, agricultural, and cannabis laboratories.
Shannon has experience as an Analytical Chemist in environmental, drinking water, and nutritional supplement laboratories. Her position at Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ) included quality assurance, project review, sampling coordination, and conducting training for permit and hazardous waste inspectors, wastewater treatment plant operators, and laboratory staff. She also was a Lead Assessor for the Oregon Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ORELAP) in the ODEQ and Oregon Health Authority where she presented trainings at Oregon Laboratory Environmental Association (OELA) and represented the state of Oregon on the national TNI quality systems and field activities committee and on the TNI Accreditation Council.
Partnering as the second full-time Assessor with the Program Manager, she participated in ORELAP efforts to promote cooperative, rather than punitive, assessments in air toxics, environmental, drinking water, whole effluent toxicity, radiochemistry, and microbiology laboratories by providing technical assistance and cooperative training. This holistic approach resulted in the program doubling in size, and ORELAP became the primary accrediting body to laboratories from South Korea, Fiji, Canada, and various states including Colorado, Arizona, Hawaii, and most laboratories in the California National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (NELAP).
She was the Cannabis Program Manager for ORELAP, the state accreditation body required for all compliance cannabis laboratories in Oregon, and provided cannabis laboratory compliance training to state cannabis regulations and the TNI Standard. She developed a cannabis-specific “in-matrix” proficiency testing program and multiple policies addressing the complexities of compliant implementation. She trained the ORELAP Team on cannabis auditing and organized the audits of 22 cannabis laboratories as an ORELAP Lead Assessor.
Ms. Swantek served on the Cannabis Testing Rules Advisory Committee (RAC), which advised on the testing legislation for both the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) for medical cannabis and the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) for adult-use cannabis sampling and analysis. She chaired the cannabis sampling sub-committee and participated in the pesticide sub-committee providing associated sections of the legislation. As a cannabis industry expert, she assisted the Oregon Department of Justice (ODOJ), Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), OHA, and OLCC by regularly advising on policy in all parts of the cannabis-industry legislation pertaining to testing, labeling, processing, and cultivation.
She participated in industry education efforts – speaking at processor, dispensary, and cultivator meetings on the changing legislation, working with the laboratories, and educating onprocess control. She also coordinated with other state public health officials in an effort to standardize state efforts and spoke on state regulatory panels in industry conferences such as the Emerald Conference and the Cannabis Quality Summit. She remains engaged in state and national efforts to support the cannabis industry as well as provide laboratory development services to help elevate the industry’s standards for credible and high-quality scientific data.