Nancy Botwin didn’t have anything on these ladies.
The business world has been blown open by powerful women entrepreneurs in weed. But what’s the draw? Men are 50 times more likely than women to smoke, even as recent as 2012. And when asked to imagine a stereotypical “pot head,” you’re probably more likely to imagine a dude than a chick.
It seems that a lot of the appeal comes from how women perceive pot. As early as the 1980s, women were at the forefront of medical marijuana legalization, with figures like “Brownie Mary” causing waves. Women are also interested in defending pot as a natural course for relaxation and stress-relief.
Here are ten women who, for whatever their own reasons, are dominating the weed world and creating their own cannabis empires.
1. Greta Carter
Carter was once, in the banking world, a pretty big deal. She was the Vice President of Citi-Bank for a whopping 18 years. Today? Carter is he founder of The Cannabis Training Institute, and is in the cannabis world, an even bigger deal. Along with offering educational courses and resources for people who want to come and learn, Carter sustains a 2,100 sqft farm where she grows an astounding 3,500 lbs of marijuana on an annual basis.
2. Ashley Preece-Sackett
With more than 15 years of experience in horticulture sciences specializing in organic farming systems, Preece-Sackett is kind of an amazing addition to the world of cannabis. She’s the Director of Industry Outreach for Cascadia Labs, an education and testing provider looking to improve people’s marijuana experiences.
3. Jamie Perino
Perino opened and runs was she calls the “Apple store of weed” — Euflora, a chic and techy-looking space that provides customers with tablets that help answer questions. Euflora gets the street cred of being the first recreational marijuana store to have opened in Aurora in Colorado, with Perino dreaming of becoming the “Marijuana Millionaire Mama.
4. Brooke Gehring
Gehring has settled some serious roots in Colorado. Not only is she currently active in several organizations — Patients Choice of Colorado, Live Green Cannabis, Marijuana Industry Group, the National Cannabis Industry Association, Council for Responsible Cannabis Regulation — but she also founded one herself, Live Green Consulting. Gehring is also a founding member of Women Grow, a vital women’s network of marijuana entrepreneurs in the US — something most of the women on this list are a member of.
5. Charlo Greene
Greene stepped away from what was arguably a safe, stable, and lasting career as a news anchor for KTVA when she quit her job on-air while covering a story on the Alaska Cannabis Club, a medical marijuana organization in her home state. Live, Greene broke the news the was the founder and owner of the club and would be pursuing that career path full-time, and in some seriously salty language, dropped the mic on her newswoman career.
6. Whitney Hobbs
The vice president of sales for Highly Distributed, Hobbs is in a unique position. Highly Distributed is a web of retailers, suppliers, and support groups — and Hobbs gets to overlook all of them.
7. Genny Kiley
Regardless of how a particular state sees marijuana legalization, there are still the looming federal laws regarding it — this is where lawyers like Kiley come in. Founder of the group Emerge Law Group, Kiley wanted to create a law foundation specifically for Oregon distributors who were looking for the best guidance and information — and she did.
8. Jennifer Beck
You may not know her face, but you likely know her product — Beck is the CEO and co-founder of Cannabase, a website that boasts more than $5 million in marijuana products, from buds to extracts to clones. She also sits as the vice-chairwoman to the Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce (C4).
9. Inge Fryklund
A former prosecutor with the Cook County States Attorney in Chicago, Fryklund turned her attention to marijuana after seeing first hand what the war on drugs was doing to people. She now works hands on withLaw Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) and as an independent consultant.
10. Leah Maurer
Maurer is a busy woman. Not only did she play an integral part in Oregon’s legalization of marijuana by being a founding member of New Approach Oregon, Portland chapter of Women Grow, she’s also a constantly fighting activist and stay at home mom of three.
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