From Ganjapreneurs to Policy Shapers- These Ladies Know How To Get Things Done
When you think about the burgeoning cannabis industry, you may not picture a woman leading the way, but according to Marijuana Business Daily, women make up about 36% of executive roles in the legal marijuana industry. This includes 63% of high-level positions at testing labs and approximately 50% of leadership roles at infused products and processing companies. Compare that to the average of 25% of senior managers in other industries. That is the closest any industry has come to representing women proportionately in it’s leadership! So who are these badass females ushering in the age of ganjapreneurship? Let’s meet a few!
Ladies and Gentleman, please welcome Amanda Reiman, the Manager of Marijuana Law and Policy for the Drug Policy Alliance. Reiman’s work as the Director of Research and Patient Services for the Berkeley Patient Group oversaw one of the first dispensaries to open. That dispensary has become the model for safe, quality dispensaries nationwide.
Dr. Jacqueline Nguyen
Dr. Jacqueline Nguyen is a pharmacist and founder of Ensohara, a provider of high quality, organic CBD oil. Nguyen is a huge Vietnamese TV personality who has taken great pride in educating patients about the benefits of cannabis as a medical treatment.
This is Betty Aldworth and she is the power behind bringing legal, retail cannabis to Colorado in her position as the Advocacy Director for the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. Her work was far from finished here though. Aldworth went on to become the Deputy Director of the National Cannabis Industry Association and not works as the Executive Director for Students for Sensible Drug Policy. Aldworth is making great strides toward changing the way we regulate and talk about cannabis!
Lynn Lyman is leading the way in policy reform as the California State Director for the Drug Policy Alliance. Lyman is the force behind criminal justice reform in the state and is a very active proponent of Prop 64.
This is Alison Holcomb, the pivotal force behind bringing marijuana to Washington! Holcomb drafted the original legislation for Initiative 502 in her role as Drug Policy Director and Criminal Justice Director of the ACLU for Washington State. Holcomb is now the CEO of Action Now Initiative, continuing her work for criminal justice reform.
Jane West is a force to be reckoned with. West began her adventures in ganjapreneurship under the pseudo name Jane West and maintained her day job as an event planner under her legal name, Amy Dannemiller. However, as she gained recognition in the cannabis industry and appeared on CNBC vaping, the two worlds collided and West was fired. She didn’t let that stop her though! She went on to found Women Grow, the single largest professional network in the cannabis industry, and is the CEO of Jane West Enterprises, a lifestyle brand dedicated to the very best cannabis has to offer.
Ah Warner is the founder of Cannabis Basics, a topicals manufacturing company led entirely by a female staff! Her company is one of the very first to be issued a trademark logo containing the word cannabis. Warner has been at this since 1995 and has done it all as a mom and active community member at the same time!
Meet Adelia Carrillo, CEO of Direct Cannabis Network, a website geared toward advancing technology and innovation among ganjapreneurs. Carrillo felt this was a huge gap in the industry that needed to be addressed to further the progress of the cannabis industry and cultivate talent. Carrillo also provides mentoring and business consulting as well as hosting educational events.
Perception is everything and Ophelia Chong has forever altered the perception of cannabis. Chong is the founder of StockPotImages.com, a stock photo agency specializing in cannabis photos. These aren’t just cheesy, uninspired stock photos though! They represent the wide array of everyday people who use cannabis in a realistic way. Chong is obliterating stereotypes and expanding the association of cannabis in the visual world.
Suzanna Sisley is known for her extensive research on medical cannabis. She received an $8 million grant dedicated to researching the effects of cannabis on PTSD. The grant is entirely funded by taxes raised through legal marijuana sales. This ongoing three year study could be groundbreaking in the treatment of PTSD and the furthering of legalization efforts.
CEO of Mindful, Meg Sanders, heads the largest woman-led cannabis company in America. Her work has spanned across the entire marijuana industry. She was a key part in the establishment of regulations for the legal marijuana industry in Colorado, having been the only industry representative appointed by Gov. Hickenlooper to be involved in their creation.
Introducing the Pot Princess of Vancouver, Jodie Emery. Emery and her husband Marc are the co-owners of Cannabis Culture Magazine, Pot TV, and Cannabis Culture Headquarters. Jodie’s activist efforts have been leading the movement for full legalization in Canada and her entrepreneurial endeavors have changed the social landscape.
Ariel Clark is an attorney and founder of the Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force. The Task Force provides educational and networking events in Los Angeles focusing on creating informed community members to work toward equitable marijuana policy.
Savage Fox is the founder of 3D Cannabis Center, site of the first legal recreational cannabis sale in the world . Fox has been an advocate for legal, high quality cannabis for over two decades. According to her website, “she is on the Board of Directors for SAFER, Women Grow and the Women’s Cannabusiness Network, a founding member of the NCIA, a founding member of the Women’s Marijuana Movement and a member of Sensible Colorado, Norml, Norml Women’s Alliance, and Marijuana Policy Project.”