What benefits do you see for patients throughout Florida within this space?
When you obtain a medical cannabis card, you will be able to legally shop at licensed dispensaries in the state of Florida for quality medical cannabis. One of the biggest benefits of becoming a cannabis patient in Florida is that it opens the door to an incredible array of all-natural, plant based treatment options that can be customized to suit your individual conditions, symptoms, and lifestyle.
What motivates you to be a part of the Cannabis Industry?
Outside of of my personal passion, which comes from a 20 year diagnosis of Lupus and now able to say I am seizure free and in remission for nearly three years (a result of medical cannabis), I am driven to bring education on a clinical platform. I am part of a movement that is not only committed to a healthier alternative to dangerous pharmaceuticals it is focused on changing minds and literally saving lives. That, to me, is why I got into healthcare 25 years ago. To be a part of something so much bigger than any one of us are is truly the most most empowered and whole I have felt in many years. I can honestly say that I am proud of what I do and want to give as many individuals the same blessings and opportunities I have had. Love your work and you will never work a day in your life.
What field are you in within the Cannabis space?
I am one of two owners in a large medical cannabis conference. We educate physicians and clinicians as well as bring opportunity and education to industry professionals and patients. My business partner, Dawn Yarnell, and I have grown Florida Medical Cannabis Conference into an experience and an outstanding platform of medicine, advocacy and education. We also own and operate a medical cannabis clinic in Naples, FL and are privileged to work alongside of Dr. Paul Weisman. As if that is not enough, we have a CBD line we have invested countless hours of research and time in called Zilis.
How can people in Florida benefit from the company you represent?
Patients can benefit by obtaining answers to their questions, physicians, clinicians and healthcare providers have the opportunity to learn from their peers from all over the world. Industry professionals and law makers benefit as well. Medically, all individuals have the opportunity to treat chronic illness naturally and holistically. I hear testimony after testimony almost daily and even after three years in the industry I find myself still shocked at 2 things:
1. How on earth have we not had a better understanding of how and why this medicine is literally life changing to so many and
2. The miracle behind the medicine and the success it provides to so many.
How did you get started within the cannabis industry?
As I mentioned before I have Lupus and suffered for many years. I was admitted to the hospital 18 times for sometimes 2 weeks at a time for years. I was eventually taking 40 pills a day to treat my symptoms. My prognosis was literally doom and gloom. I have been told I might have 1-2 years to live if I maintained a stress free life and took care of myself. Ha! I have 4 children who all have full-time schedules so that wasn’t happening. My last hospital stay I was admitted with my best friend of 40 years and now business partner, Dawn Yarnell, and the doctor in the ER said, “she is going to die from all of this medication.” Now keep in mind, at that time I did not support Cannabis use medicinally. I know, still shaking my head. Dawn looked at me and said, “what on earth do we have to lose”, and that is how my journey began. Once I started I don’t think I understood what to expect. I noticed my seizures slowing down, eventually stopping, I did not need my pain meds, I gradually weaned off of my steroids, and eventually all of my medications. Today I do not take 1 pharmaceutical at all. I treat my seizures and inflammation with CBD daily and THC at night. I feel healthier now, at 47 years old, than I did at 30. Today my entire family is committed to medical cannabis education. We won’t stop this journey.
Are you personally a MJ card holder?
I am a patient, my oldest son (broke his neck in a car accident several years ago) is a patient, I support CBD for all ages, my friends are patients, my colleagues are patients.
Do you see Florida moving forward with recreational Marijuana/Cannabis and how will that affect your business?
I do see it happening in a few years. Remember, supporting adult use or home grow is still supporting regulation. It is critical cannabis be regulated to maintain quality and medicinal benefit. Affect me? There will always be an adult use market as well as a medical market, education will always be critical and cannabis and CBD will continue to save lives. I see it as an addition to what Florida has already accomplished. However, my passion and obsession will always be the medical cannabis side. I am overwhelmed at the treatment success I have seen in so many chronically ill people.