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Employee Spotlight | Meet Austin Layne

April 6, 2020


What’s your favorite kind of food? 

I love food, so it’s really hard for me to decide on just one kind. But since I have to pick, I’d have to go with a marinated tri-tip. My mom would make it for us at least once a week when I was young so it’s always a little nostalgic anytime I have it.

What was your first job?

My first ‘job’ was helping out with the family business in Clearlake – Layne Paving and Trucking, Inc. However, once I was old enough I got a job at Foods Etc. – a local grocery store in Clearlake – where I worked as a cashier and helped out with stocking and ordering.

What’s your favorite book? Movie?

My favorite movie is Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist. My favorite book is Under the Rising Sun by my grandfather, Mario Machi. He was a survivor of the Bataan Death March during World War II. His story, to me, stands as an example of how it is possible for great men with strong hearts to endure such horrific situations without losing themselves along the way.

What’s on your bucket list?

By the time I kick the bucket, I’d like to write an autobiography. A lot of my life has included events that are pretty unique, at least from my perspective. Putting my stories in a book by the time I get older would give me a great feeling of accomplishment and a more graceful acceptance when closing in on the end of my life. I think I’ll be ready for it to end if, when all is said and done, it turns out to be worth the read.

Red or black licorice? 


A typical weekend for me is…

A typical weekend for me involves a lot of rest and relaxation to make sure I’m ready for the week ahead. Currently, my weekends are spent stuck inside self-isolating as a result of COVID-19. But normally, I usually try to get out and do some exploring. I’m new to Sonoma County and there’s so much I have yet to see. You can also find me in my garden, hanging out with my animals, or reading a good book with a hot cup of tea.  

If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

If I could meet anyone it would have to be my grandfather, Mario Machi. I got to meet him when I was very young, but he passed away by the time I was five years old. Even in death, my grandfather has served as one of the most powerful role models for me. My mom told me stories of him throughout my childhood and I feel like I can also connect with him every time I open up his book, Under the Rising Sun. Now that I am older, there’s not a lot I wouldn’t do to be able to speak with him and get to know him in person, or fishing on one of his boats off the Lost Coast.

How do you relax after a hard day’s work?

After a hard day’s work, I head back home and get a workout in. Then I hang out with my cats, pop open a bottle of wine or beer – depending on the mood I’m in – and put a movie on. If I have enough energy, I might put a little work in on my guitar. 

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

A lot of people don’t know that I’m actually almost blind in my right eye. My vision in my left eye became above-average to compensate. I’m unable to see much with my right eye, though my peripheral vision and depth perception are unimpaired. Because of this, I had to learn how to do certain things left-handed, like shooting pool. It really doesn’t have that much of an impact on my life, especially since it’s been this way since birth, but it is something you probably wouldn’t guess unless I told you!

What are you looking forward to in the coming months?

There’s a lot for me to look forward to in the coming months. I feel like I’ve started a new chapter in my life that involves more positive change. Now that I’ve moved out of my hometown and solidified a role within an awesome company with great people, I feel like I’m closer to some of my goals than I’ve ever been before. Every day is an opportunity to meet new people, try new things, and experience life in ways that just weren’t available to me back home. I plan on taking full advantage!

What’s your preferred type of cannabis product (e.g., edibles, flower, pre-rolls, dabs, etc.)? 

Definitely flower.

What’s your favorite strain? 

So far, I’d say my favorite strain is probably Cement Shoes, although the Whitezilla we have is legit.

Where do you see the cannabis industry in the next 5 years? 10 years?

I’m hoping that in the near future cannabis will have lost the negative perception that it’s shrouded in. There is a ton of potential for cannabis, and hemp, as a resource and, more importantly, a solution to many different problems we’re facing as individuals and as a country. Hopefully, in the coming years, we will continue to increase our utilization of cannabis as a product on a legal market.

Describe your typical day at fumé…

A typical day at fumé is always fun to be a part of. Our crew is full of friendly people with fun personalities. Every day we work as a team to create a fulfilling work environment that we all can enjoy while getting cannabis out to our customers throughout the North Bay.

What’s your favorite thing about working at fumé?

My favorite thing about working at fumé would have to be the people I get to work with. I’ve met so many awesome people through this company and I believe we’ve been able to help each other improve day in and day out. Getting to move down to Sonoma County and manage our new depot has been very rewarding, but also very challenging. I owe a lot of my ability to succeed in this role to the support I’ve received from my friends in this company. I’ll always cherish the relationships that we’ve formed along the way.

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