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5 Prolific Women In the Cannabis Industry

5 Prolific Women In the Cannabis Industry

The most exciting aspect of the ever-growing cannabis industry is that for the first time in any new business frontier, men and women are on an equal playing field. The gender diversity in pot is at an astounding high – with many of the old money, white male, businessmen either avoiding the risk of the industry entirely, or just being too late to the show to throw a hat in.


Regardless these five, fierce females are at the precipice of the cannabis industry, and are etching their names into history.


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Wanda James


To summarize Wanda James into one particular niche in the cannabis industry would be a disservice to her career. To say the least, she’s worn many hats: a former Navy Lieutenant, restaurateur, former appointee to President Obama’s National Finance Committee, owner of Simply Pure edibles, pot activist, and even personal cannabis chef. James and her husband also owned and operated a profitable dispensary, Apothecary of Colorado – being the first African Americans to own and operate a dispensary in the Rocky Mountain state.


However, in 2012 the couple had to sell their thriving cannabis dispensary because in order to receive financial services back then, they would’ve had to lie about the nature of their business.


This setback left James undeterred, allowing her to focus on new ventures. One of which was founding the Cannabis Global Initiative, a firm that specializes in business services and consulting to growing companies in the cannabis industry. CGI also works with municipalities, policymakers, and other cannabis-related entities in local, national, and international markets to create sustained growth within the industry.


James’ activism in the world of pot doesn’t end there. She also works with NAACP and the Colorado office of the Drug Policy Alliance, tirelessly fighting against the disproportionate amount of African American to Caucasian pot-related arrests in the US prison system.


James and her husband are planning to open a new dispensary that also provides marijuana-cooking classes, which would make it the first cannabis cooking school in the nation.


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Cheryl and Aimee Shuman: Founders of Beverly Hills Cannabis Club


Aptly dubbed the “Exclusive Club for High Society,” The Beverly Hills Cannabis Club has catered to the pot connoisseurs of world since 1996. BHCC has long been a hub for sophisticated insight into a range of subjects, which include 420 travel, politics, women and children issues, fashion, state of the art vaporizers, and much more – all of which adding a luxurious element to the world of cannabis.


Both Cheryl and Aimee have graced television screens across America, advocating for medical and recreational cannabis use. They’ve been credited as marijuana experts numerous times on panels on CNN, Fox News, the Katie Couric show, and more.


Most notably, the duo is attempting to bring cannabis into the homes of everyday people in an unexpected way. Cheryl Shuman, who famously brought Ray Ban Wayfarers into the light through Tom Cruise’s role in Risky Business, plans to also bring cannabis products into the world of television and film product placement. She has already secured a deal for the popular FX series, Wilfred.


The Shumans also manage a $100 million dollar funding facility to specifically invest and help grow the industry. It is no wonder why they’re referred to as the “Martha Stewarts of Marijuana.”


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Brittany J. Confer: Director of PR at Foria


If you and your loved one enjoy recreational cannabis and haven’t heard of Foria, do yourself a favor, open another tab on your web browser and look this product up.


Confer is head of PR for the revolutionary product, Foria – a female stimulation oil that has been making waves in not only the world of cannabis, but the pleasure industry as well. The sensual spray is a combination of coconut oil and cannabis oil that is meant for vaginal lubrication.


Confer, a Penn State graduate and former Director of PR at Kip Morrison and Associates, has stated her belief that weed is a natural aphrodisiac, and may have just helped proved that with Foria.


More importantly, Confer’s company has nailed a significant milestone for women in the sexual enhancement industry – a market where products targeted to men have almost full exclusivity.


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Greta Carter: Founder of the Cannabis Training Institute


Seven years ago Greta Carter was your typical business powerhouse. With a successful career at Citibank in international banking and real estate, she was already a force to be reckoned with. However, in 2009 she took the knowledge gained in the boardroom and turned it towards the cannabis industry – which at the time was still in its infancy.


Greta founded the Cannabis Training Institute, an online education and consulting business aimed at entrepreneurs whom are hoping to start their own “cannabusinesses.” Many of the practices and knowledge gained from CTI is utilized by testing labs, dispensaries, and cultivation centers.


When Washington proposed Initiative 502 in 2012– making marijuana legal for anyone 21 and over – Greta was instrumental in helping write the legislation, as lawmakers didn’t have a clear grasp on the science behind the product.


“The board didn’t know the difference between butane extract and cannabinoids,” she said in an interview with Newsweek. “We all kind of grew together. I was able to influence some of the rules and regulations, and I’m still influencing those rules and regulations.”


Carter also maintains Life Gardens; one of the oldest and largest recreational marijuana farms in the world.


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Senator Diane Savino (D-NY)


We’ve seen powerful women throughout this list covering almost every angle of the thriving cannabis industry. Senator Savino, however, is fighting a war on the most important front of them all: the senate floor.


As an outspoken supporter of medical marijuana, Savino pushed for New York’s Compassionate Care Act, a law that grants medical marijuana distribution to a patient who has been certified by a healthcare provider.


Though the legislation is not as relaxed as other medical states (you can only receive marijuana at hospitals or community health centers and it’s tightly regulated by the DOH) it is a step in the right direction, especially for patients in need.


Savino’s efforts helped secure low-THC oil for children who suffer from epilepsy. Known as “Charlotte’s Web,” this oil will prevent children from experiencing the normal high of cannabis oil, but contains enough CBD to prevent seizures.


With more women entering the cannabis marketplace en masse it’s certainly exciting to see, that for the first time in history, the future of an equal gender industry.



Not only are these women pioneers in the wild frontier of the cannabis industry, they’re doing their part in fully legitimizing medical and recreational cannabis use.