“It’s a history that, thankfully, more people are aware of now but it is still kind of hidden,” said Candace Gingrich. Gingrich, an LGBTQ activist who spent two decades working with the Human Rights Campaign. Known as the younger half-sibling of one of the more outspoken Speakers of the House in recent political history, Gingrich made a name for themself fighting for gay rights since the mid-nineties. Today, Gingrich is the Vice President and Head of Business Development at Revolution Florida, a cannabis company striving to increase access to legal cannabis.

“In terms of public figures and still more women in the cannabis world, whether it’s on stage at [MJBizCon] or launching their own brands or whatever it is, we’re seeing more women,” said Chloe Steerman, an Account Executive at Colorado-based Grasslands, a journalism-minded PR agency in the cannabis space that’s gone to great lengths to elevate the voices of women into leadership roles. “We’re just not seeing them in those positions of leadership and positions of power.”

Dr. Shover, a postdoctoral research fellow at Stanford University worked with fellow researchers Corey Davis, Sanford Gordon, and Keith Humphreys to buck a cannabis industry pearl of conventional wisdom; the oft-cited, often-sloganeered study by Marcus Bachhuber that found a positive correlation between medical cannabis states and a decrease in opioid overdose deaths from 1999-2010.