Viola was founded by Al Harrington, a former NBA player who was a first-round pick in the 1998 NBA draft. Al went on to play for 16 seasons, and became personally aware of the medicinal benefits of cannabis after suffering complications from a botched knee surgery towards the end of his NBA career. But the original inspiration for starting a company came from Al’s beloved grandmother who suffers from glaucoma and diabetes. With some convincing from Al, she reluctantly agreed to try cannabis for her pain and found immediate relief. Her name is Viola. The rest, as they say, is history.