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Influential Women in the Marijuana Industry

July 08, 2020 4 min read

woman smoking vape pen

Women often fly under the radar when it comes to promoting and using marijuana, however they love their bud just as much as the boys. With increased legalization, the rise of medicinal pot, and reduced stigma, women are keen to get their hands on a piece of the $13.6 billion (and growing) legal marijuana industry. Powerful women are shaking up the industry with improved marketing and products tailored specifically to the growing female market, but that’s not all, women are contributing to moving the industry forward in every sector. It’s estimated that over one third of marijuana business executives are females and 26% of all pot companies are founded by women! Both figures are much higher than the national average which is just 20%. Women are also leading the pack when it comes to cannabis influencers, helping to increase visibility, improve representation and diversity, and contribute to the evolving marijuana subculture. These are just a few of the inspiring women to watch:

Dr. Chanda Macias

Dr. Macias is a powerhouse in the medical marijuana sector and focuses on improving the equity of women in cannabis. She’s the Chairwoman and CEO of Women Grow, the largest network in the country for cannabis professionals, and the CEO and founder of the award-winning medical marijuana dispensary, National Holistic. She is also on the Board of Directors for the Minority Cannabis Business Association and used her expertise to help launch several billion-dollar companies and over 1,000 women-owned cannabis brands. In addition to assisting entrepreneurs and working on the business side of things, Dr. Macias is also one of the top cannabis experts, focusing on alternative allopathic medicine to treat illnesses.

Cyo Nystrom and Rachel Washtien

It’s no secret that bud can ramp up the excitement in the bedroom, but did you know that the green goddess can help you stay naturally lubricated and also enhance sensation? Before founding Quim, Nystrom and Washtien were plagued with all the typical female health issues like low libido, bladder infections, and irritation from lube. The plant-based brand produces four keystone lubricants, two that are CBD based, and two that have THC so those with vaginas, and those that don’t can both have more fun in bed.

Aliza Sherman, Melissa Pierce, and Ashley E. Kingsley

These three ladies had one thing in common that brought them together, their use of medical marijuana. But the trio felt that they lacked access to cannabis-related resources. That’s where the idea of Ellementa was born. The female-focused health and wellness brand is run by local organizers who host intimate conversations with other women and run informative workshops collectively known as “gatherings”. Past topics have included: CBD and sleep, guided meditation, anxiety and pot, and more. The aim is to share stories and experiences, unify local marijuana communities, and disseminate reliable wellness information.

Bess Byers

Better known as Cannabess, Byers is a cannabis photographer, influencer, and digital marketer. She uses her platforms to advocate for marijuana reform and even started her own digital marketing agency called Blaise Creative, which works with marijuana brands on social media management and SEO. The Seattle-based potstar has nearly 100k followers on her Instagram, which is all about sharing her political views and spreading awareness regarding the medicinal properties and economic opportunities of pot.

Mara Gordon

Gordon is a renowned cannabis advocate, researcher, and co-founder of Aunt Zelda’s. She used her experience working as a process engineer along with data collected from her research to create precise dosing regimens (there’s still no industry standard) and medicinal products. The company produces organic, contaminant-free topicals, extracts, and olive oil tinctures. She also founded Calla Spring Wellness, an online platform for medical professionals to gain information on cannabinoid-based treatment plans for certain illnesses. Gordon is currently working on clinical trials for autism, chronic pain and insomnia and was most recently featured on the inspiring documentary, Weed the People.

Corey Thomas

Having grown up around cannabis farming, working with the plant was the natural next step for Thomas. She built a health-focused cannabis line of products from scratch, starting by experimenting with infused honey, coconut oil, teas, and essential oils. Her goal is to break down the stigma of cannabis use through all-natural products that fulfill the needs of the entire cannabis community. The Honey Pot Cannabis Company offers topicals, a variety of vaporizers, and their renowned cannabis-infused honey that she has tweaked and perfected over the years. With 13 High Times awards including first place trophies for the Best Topical, Best Edible, and Best CBD Edible categories under her belt, Thomas is officially the cannahoney queen.

Carol Ehrhart and Alissa Taylor

These two ladies make a very unlikely team for opening and running a successful marijuana business, since one is a veterinarian and the other is a small business accountant. The couple saw the potential early on and became one of the first in Washington to receive a recreational marijuana license and then opened one of the first dispensaries in the country. 4:20 Friendly has gained recognition for their inclusive and welcoming budtenders, high quality products, and competitive prices, all with an unpretentious attitude. The female owned dispensary is still located in the original wooden cabin they built together on their property in Spokane.

For a huge selection of affordable smoking accessories, bongs, pipes, bubblers, and vapes, visit our online headshop.


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