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Leading authorities and change-makers will address the transition to a sustainable culture through the advancement of cannabis/hemp, eco-activism, natural cures and alternative healing.
Ed Rosenthal * Chris Conrad * Steve DeAngelo * Swami Beyondananda * Kevin Danaher * David Bronner * Ralph Metzner * Patrick Goggin * Eric Steenstra * Mikki Norris Prashanti de Jager * Ahmed Rahim * Mike Whitty * Ngaio Bealum * and many more! …details below…
Adam Eidinger is a dynamic hemp renaissance entrepreneur, writer, activist, father and media personality. He has 15 years of public relations experience in the nation’s capital working for numerous non-profit organizations and causes. The Mintwood Media Collective, which he helped found in 2000, has handled public relations for Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps since 2001. In 2007 Eidinger opened Capitol Hemp Clothing and Accessories which now has two stores in Washington, DC. The company features a waste veggie oil delivery van. Eidinger has organized and committed acts of civil disobedience for numerous causes including the prosecution of medical marijuana patients. In 2009 Eidinger was arrested with farmers and business leaders on the lawn of the Drug Enforcement Administration Headquarters in Virginia for planting thousands of hemp seeds to protest the US ban on hemp farming. Eidinger has appeared on every TV news network and even appeared on John Stewarts’ Daily Show. In 2010 Eidinger helped form the DC Patients Cooperative, a non-profit organization which is seeking licenses from the DC government to sell and grow medical cannabis.
Ahmed Rahim, is the master blender, CEO and cofounder behind Numi Organic Tea.Before starting the Numi business in 1999 with his sister, Reem, Ahmed spent a decade living, working and traveling throughout Europe as a professional film maker and photographer. Calling home to Paris, the German Alps and eventually Prague, Ahmed began to help create and design several teahouses in Prague. He became a partner in one of them, helped expand and grow the business and found his professional calling. From this immersion into European teahouse culture evolved a keen passion for blending teas, and ultimately resulted in Ahmed developing the blends that have become Numi's distinctive product line. Ahmed remains Numi's alchemist today, seeking and sourcing the world's most exotic and premium teas and blending them into unique flavors that awaken and inspire the American palate.
Ahmed is fluent in English, Arabic, French, German, and Czech. He holds a B.A. in psychology and theatre from New York University, and has studied film and photography at various universities in New York, Paris, and Prague.Ahmed Rahim is the master blender, CEO and cofounder behind Numi Organic Tea.Before starting the Numi business in 1999 with his sister, Reem, Ahmed spent a decade living, working and traveling throughout Europe as a professional film maker and photographer. Calling home to Paris, the German Alps and eventually Prague, Ahmed began to help create and design several teahouses in Prague. He became a partner in one of them, helped expand and grow the business and found his professional calling. From this immersion into European teahouse culture evolved a keen passion for blending teas, and ultimately resulted in Ahmed developing the blends that have become Numi's distinctive product line. Ahmed remains Numi's alchemist today, seeking and sourcing the world's most exotic and premium teas and blending them into unique flavors that awaken and inspire the American palate. Ahmed is fluent in English, Arabic, French, German, and Czech. He holds a B.A. in psychology and theatre from New York University, and has studied film and photography at various universities in New York, Paris, and Prague.
Psychedelic veteran Carolyn Garcia aka Mountain Girl joined the Merry Pranksters in 1964 and traveled on Ken Kesey’s bus “Furthur” presenting “Acid Tests” in California. She joined the Grateful Dead family in the Haight-Ashbury in 1966. Jerry Garcia and Carolyn have two daughters. She has been on the board of Rex Foundation among others, for many years, and keeps up with psychedelic and cannabis issues and developments as best she can. She now serves as President of the Women’s Visionary Council, which presents the annual Women’s Visionary Congress and other educational events investigating the marvelous. In 1974 she wrote “The Primo Plant” , one of the earliest books published about sinsemilla marijuana growing.
A quick-witted, internationally known expert on the history, medical, social, economic and ecological aspects of Cannabis hemp, Chris Conrad is author of four groundbreaking books, and has served as an expert witness on industrial hemp, hempseed, marijuana, marijuana cultivation, medical marijuana, and personal consumption of marijuana in the Superior Courts throughout the State of California. He advocates full restoration of industrial hemp, medical marijuana with a doctor's supervision, and setting a legal age of consent for marijuana use by responsible adults in a regulated market.
The books: His landmark treatise, Cannabis Yields and Dosage has provided the scientific basis for devising policies on medical use and was presented at the Fifth International Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, 2008. It is currently available in its sixth updated edition. Hemp, Lifeline to the Future, his first book, helped launch the modern hemp industry and cannabis reform movement.
It reintroduces hemp as a sustainable natural resource.Hemp for Health discusses medical marijuana and the nutritional and environmental uses of the cannabis plant. Shattered Lives, Portraits From America's Drug War, co-authored with his wife, Mikki Norris, and their colleague, Virginia Resner, explores the human cost of America's prison-based drug policy. The trio also wrote their newest book, Human Rights and the US Drug War as an analys of drug war policy within the context of international human rights law.
Chris Conrad is founder and director of the Business Alliance for Commerce in Hemp (BACH), director of the Family Council on Drug Awareness(FCDA), and a member of the Hemp Industries Association (HIA). He designed and curated the international Hash-Marihuana-Hemp Museumlocated in Amsterdam, Holland, where he researched cannabis culture and cultivation. He is art director for the Human Rights and the Drug Warexhibit. He is also on the boards of Human Rights and the Drug War and the Drug Peace Campaign. Chris Conrad has been qualified as an expert witness on industrial hemp, hempseed, marijuana, marijuana cultivation, medical marijuana, and personal consumption of marijuana in the Superior Courts throughout the State of California. He has presented expert testimony in court and at government hearings and consults with legislators.He founded the American Hemp Council in 1989, was a chief proponent of the 1992 and 1994 California Hemp Initiatives, and portrayed "Johnny Marijuanaseed" in the PBS classic The Nineties "Hemp Show #1."
A freelance writer based in San Francisco, Chris Roberts reports on cannabis policy for SF Weekly. Roberts also covers city governance and politics for SFAppeal.com and other publications..
Chris Van Hook is the founder of the first ever third party, non-conflicted cannabis inspection programavailable throughout the state of California; The Clean Green Certified Program. Years of USDA OrganicInspection experience make him an ideal candidate to construct a Certification program with Cleanand practical standards. The Clean Green Certified and Best Practices Programs are certifications thatrequire on-site inspections and licensed lab testing, and have been independently verifying high qualitymedical grade cannabis since 2004. Chris Van Hook is a licensed California Attorney working in medicalcannabis compliance. He has worked to develop marijuana ordinances in numerous counties throughoutCalifornia. He is also an official third-party inspector for the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department9.31 Program; a medical cannabis cultivation ordinance.
Chris Van Hook has been published in many agriculture and cannabis related news sources including; High Times Medical Cannabis Magazine, West Coast Leaf, High Times Magazine, 420 Magazine, WestCoast Cannabis, and LA Kush.
Christine Wagner is a civil law attorney supporting the cannabis and sustainability movements. Through work in the green building and organic agriculture sectors, Christine has served as a regulatory compliance consultant to clients seeking LEED® certification through the US Green Building Council and organic certification through the US Department of Agriculture's National Organic Program. Christine is one of the co-founders of Botanical Analytics, Inc., a start-up company that has been instrumental in promoting credible laboratory standards for the testing of cannabis. Christine practices law out of the Pier 5 Law Offices and currently serves as a member of the Legal Committee to the San Francisco Medical Cannabis Task Force.
David Bronner is a grandson of Dr. Bronner and has been President of Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps since 1998. He pioneered the use of 100% post-consumer recycled PET bottles for the liquid soaps and a hemp/recycled paper blend to package the bars. Under David's leadership, in 2003, Dr. Bronner's was one of the first brands to certify their soaps, lotions and balms under the USDA National Organic Program. Today Dr. Bronner's is coordinating certified fair trade projects for all major ingredients, including olive oil from the West Bank and Israel, coconut oil from Sri Lanka, and palm oil from Ghana. David was the main coordinator of the Hemp Industries Association's successful multi-year litigation against the Drug Enforcement Administration to protect sales of Hemp foods and body care in the United States (2001-04). He is a board member of both the HIA and Vote Hemp, and is working to bring back hemp farming in the US. During high school and college summers, David worked for his father Jim's consulting company, Bronner Chemical. David graduated with a B.A. in Biology from Harvard University in 1995, and was a mental health counselor afterward in the Boston area for two years, before joining Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps in 1997.
Independent, San Francisco-based journalist David Downs covers arts, technology and culture for Wired, Rolling Stone, The Onion and many other fine publications. Writing since 1996, the thirty year-old contributes the weekly column 'Legalization Nation' to the East Bay Express of Oakland, Calif. He also co-edits the 'Marijuana Business Report' - a twice-a-month trade newsletter from Dealflow Media. Photo by Paul Quitoriano.
David Madera, Co-Founder of Hemp Technologies, was born in Heidelberg, Germany, son of a carrier military Father. The family now all lives in Asheville, NC. David graduated with a degree in economics and began his carrier in San Francisco's Banking and Finance industry. It wasn't long before David's entrepreneurial spirit kicked in and he started his first business in San Francisco.
Years later he started Madera Contracting and Design out of Venice Beach, CA, in the Los Angeles area. Now home in Asheville, NC, David was looking for Sustainable/Green building products for his projects in Downtown and along the Swannanoa River When his partner Greg called about Hempcrete from the UK. That was all it took. After some investigation into Hempcrete David was determined to bring this product into the United States and some day get our farmers growing it once again. "There is no question on how green this product is", said David in a recent Public radio interview. David and his partner Greg Flavall then started Hemp Technologies based out of Asheville North Carolina.
Since then, David and Hemp Technologies have finished the first houses made with Hempcrete in the USA. These houses have been featured in USA Today, CNN, WNC magazines as well as other publication. The next house due to be finished by November 2010 is the Nauhaus which is Passive Certified and also Leed Platium.
David is currently working to bring Hemp housing to Canada.
Don E Wirtshafter is an environmental advocate and practicing attorney in Athens County, Ohio. Don E is best known for his launch of the Ohio Hempery in 1990, America's premier hemp products merchant. He saw making an industry from the banned weed as a creative solution to the environmental and criminal justice problems that frequented his small-town law office. The Wirtshafter Law Office now represents entrepreneurs in emerging technologies. He currently is seeking investors in emerging hemp businesses.. Don E volunteers as Chairman of the Board of DrugSense, a non-profit educational group addressing drug policy, www.drugsense.org, Don E has served on the Board of Editors for the Journal of the International Hemp Association, the only peer review journal of hemp research. He is a founder and former director of the Hemp Industries Association.
Ed Rosenthal a.k.a. "the Guru of Ganja" is recognized worldwide as an authority on marijuana. In his thirty-plus years as a cannabis expert, he has written or edited more than a dozen books about marijuana cultivation and social policy, that cumulatively have sold over one million copies. Rosenthal is a member of the International Cannabinoid Research Society and the Garden Writers Association of America, and has served as an expert witness on marijuana cultivation in federal and state trials.
Rosenthal has also been active in promoting and developing policies of civil regulation for medical marijuana. Since the passage of California's pioneering Prop 215 in 1996, which authorizes medicinal use of marijuana, he has worked with the state's growers, dispensaries, and local governments to standardize and implement the delivery of pharmaceutical grade cannabis to patients.
On February 12, 2002, Ed was arrested by federal agents for applying his knowledge and helping patients to use medical marijuana. He has since been convicted of three counts of cultivation and conspiracy. In a stunning setback for the federal government, he was sentenced on June 4th, 2003 to one-day in prison and a $1,000 fine. He'd faced a statutory maximum of 100 years imprisonment and possible fines up to $4.5 million.
Ed Rosenthal is a threat to many in the federal government and their efforts to continue the War on Drugs. Having observed government policies in Europe and Canada that now recognize the beneficial applications of cannabis, he is an out spoken advocate for similar advances within the United States. For many, Rosenthal's situation focuses attention on the fact that the laws have become more harmful to society than what they were intended to regulate. The current administration is further threatened by the probability that Ed's acquittal will stop their interference with the right of states and voters to regulate their own health and welfare, as California has done with Prop. 215.
The question is clear - will those providing medical marijuana to patients in California, in compliance with state law, continue to be prosecuted by the federal government? In recent polls 70% of the public show support for the use of medical marijuana. By making an example of such high-profile activists as Ed Rosenthal, the Bush administration hopes to thwart the medical marijuana movement. Ed's watershed case has established precedent for the prosecution of similar cases in the U.S.
Eric Steenstra, HIA Executive Director and President of Vote Hemp, was awarded an HIA Hemp Achievement Award for his tireless investigations and meetings involving the DEA and the NAFTA Challenge, and awesome televised debates with Asa Hutchinson and others. He has also been applauded as our host for the DC Convention and his work as the HIA webmaster.
Frank H. Lucido MD has been practicing Family and General Medicine in Berkeley,California since 1979. He graduated from University of Michigan Medical School in1974, and completed his Family Practice Residency through University of California atDavis in 1977. Since the passage of the California Compassionate Use Act of 1996, he has beenperforming Medical Cannabis evaluations, and has written and lectured on the subject.
In 2004, he co-authored the widely read article "Implementation of the CompassionateUse Act in a Family Medical Practice, Seven Years' Clinical Experience" withMariavittoria Mangini, PhD, FNP, published in O'Shaughnessy's, the Journal ofthe Society of Cannabis Clinicians. This article is designed to be a blueprint forphysicians in making safe and appropriate recommendations.
In 2004, he founded MedicalBoardWatch.com to keep watch on Medical Board ofCalifornia actions against physicians who make medical cannabis recommendations.
He is also founder of Lucido Medical-Legal Consulting, to give expert medical testimonyfor legitimate patients who use cannabis medicinally, and for responsible physicians whorecommend it appropriately, both in California, as well as in other states.
He lectures on medical cannabis, and practice standards, and is particularly interested inspeaking to physician groups to increase the number of responsible physicians willing tomake appropriate recommendations for this safe and effective medicine.
Founding member of the American Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine.
Founder, Association of Independent Medical-Legal Consultants, www.AIMLegal.org
Member, Society of Cannabis Clinicians
Jeff Mendelsohn is the founder and president of New Leaf Paper, a company with the mission of driving a fundamental shift toward sustainability in the paper industry, one of the most polluting and resource intensive industries in the world. Jeff envisions a complete redesign of the paper industry to incorporate the principles of sustainability, and he is a frequent public speaker on this topic. Jeff leads New Leaf Paper's product innovation, creating a wide selection of market leading environmental papers that fit this vision. Since it was founded in 1998, New Leaf Paper has seen real change in the marketplace through its efforts and has inspired some of the largest paper companies in the world to pay attention to environmental concerns. Jeff and New Leaf Paper have received numerous awards for their efforts, including, most recently, the 2007 Fast Company Social Capitalist Award.
John Perry Barlow is a retired Wyoming cattle rancher, a former lyricist for the Grateful Dead, and co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation. He is a Fellow at Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. He is currently working on a new venture that will create jet fuel out of sewage.
Distinguished by his analytical expertise, sense of humor and blunt eloquence, Dr. Kevin Danaher is an exceptionally dynamic speaker. The New York Times calls him the "Paul Revere of globalization's woes."
Danaher is a co-founder of Global Exchange (1988), founder and Executive Co-Producer of the Green Festivals (2001), and Executive Director of the Global Citizen Center (2004). Dr. Danaher has spoken at universities and for community organizations throughout the U.S. He conducts workshops on issues ranging from the dynamics of the global economy to how we can replace the power of transnational corporations with local green economy networks.
A longtime critic of the so-called "free trade" agenda, Danaher explains how the U.S. must work harder than ever with other countries to reduce poverty and inequality if we want the cooperation of the world's people in ending terrorism. Having traveled worldwide, Danaher is familiar with the problems and prospects of economic development in many Third World countries.
Dr. Danaher is also the author and/or editor of numerous books, including his latest, Building the Green Economy: Success Stories from the Grass Roots (withJason Mark and Shannon Biggs). Other titles include Insurrection: Citizen Challenges to Corporate Power (with Jason Mark), Ten Reasons to Abolish the World Bank and the IMF.
Marvin Levin, 36, is the Founder and President of the Mendocino Farmers
Collective, the only collective in California run by the sustainable small
farms who are its members. Marv, as he is known to his friends, also
emcees the annual Emerald Cup Celebration at Area 101.
Michael Jolson has been advocating for the re-legalization of hemp for fuel, fiber, and food for over twenty years. He has worked closely with Jack Herer to promote the California Cannabis Hemp and Health Initiative 2012 which seeks to safeguard and expand patients access to medicine, free non-violent cannabis prisoners, and lead the way in hemp industries to help our economy and the planet.
Michael D. Whitty, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor, University of San Francisco School of Business and Management and the University of Detroit Mercy. He is co-editor of Work and Spirit: and At Work Spirituality Matters. Professor Whitty is a diversity trainer, mediator, educational policy consultant, futurist.and former director of the Institute for Building Sustainable Communities. As US Chancellor of the International Association of Educators for World Peace he has issued a Call for A Truce in The Cultural Wars.
Mikki Norris is Managing Editor and Publisher (with her husband, Chris Conrad) of the quarterly, ‘cannabis newspaper of record’, the West Coast Leaf (westcoastleaf.com). She is director of the Cannabis Consumers Campaign (cannabisconsumers.org), which advocates forequal rights, ‘coming out of the closet’, and responsible adult-use practices. Norris is coordinator of the Human Rights and the Drug War exhibit project (hr95.org) and co-author of the powerfulbook, Shattered Lives: Portraits from America’s Drug War, which shows the photos and tellsthe stories of people victimized by US drug policies. Norris and Conrad were grassroots coordinators of the Prop. 215 petition drive.
In 2006, Norris acted as a political consultant tothe various lowest law enforcement priority initiatives and ordinances that were passed in San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood. She was on thesteering committee for the Prop. 19 initiative. She was the 2006 recipient of NORML’s PaulineSabin Award in honor and recognition of the importance of women’s leadership in endingmarijuana prohibition.
Stand Up Comedian NGAIO BEALUM has always been funny. Starting as a street performer at San Francisco’s Pier 39, Ngaio quickly moved indoors, and became a San Francisco Favorite. A finalist in the San Francisco International Stand Up Comedy Competition, his great storytelling ability combined with hit razor sharp wit and engaging stage presence never fail to leave any audience howling with laughter. He has appeared on ABC, MTV, BET, Comedy Central (most recently on The Sarah Silverman Program), and many other television shows(Byron Allen’s Comics Unleashed, Merv Grifin’s Crosswords). Ngaio also publishes West Coast Cannabis Magazine, and is a great believer in personal freedom and creativity.
For over 15 years, San Francisco attorney Patrick Goggin has advocated for the re-legalization of US hemp farming. He served as local counsel in the early 2000s when the hemp industry soundly defeated the DEA's attempts to ban hemp foods. For the third time, he is helping shepherd Senator Leno's sponsored hemp bill through the California legislature this year confident that the Governor will sign it. In 2005, Mr. Goggin became actively involved in medical cannabis legal issues when San Francisco was in the process of adopting regulations governing medical cannabis dispensaries. Over the subsequent five years, Mr. Goggin played a pivotal role in helping refine the regulations and assisting a few dispensaries obtain permits. In May 2010, he was appointed to the attorney seat for San Francisco's newly established Medical Cannabis Advisory Task Force.
A founder of Organic India, Ethnopharmacologist, an Ayurveda Clinician for 20 years, an Author, Teacher, Scholar, and Yogi, PRASHANTI DE JAGER'S courses have empowered gatherings from Mayo Clinic Doctors to Prague Yoga Teacher Trainings. . In 1990 Prashanti went to India for a few months to study Ayurveda, Yoga and the Vedic Sciences. He instantly found such incredible teachers that he stayed 7 years the first time, and has lived in India about 10 years. While there he co-founded 'Organic India,' now one of the largest organic herb companies in the world and winner of the 'Most Socially Responsible Company' award in the Natural Products industry. He has authored several books on Vedic and Ayurvedic topics, taught hundreds of classes around the world, and is on the board of 'Light on Ayurveda Journal,' and the 'American Herbal Pharmacopoeia.'
RALPH METZNER Ph.D. who has a B.A. in philosophy and psychology from Oxford University and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Harvard University, has been involved in the study of transformations of consciousness ever since, as a graduate student, he worked with Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert (later Ram Dass) on the Harvard Psilocybin Projects. He co-wrote The Psychedelic Experience, and was editor of The Psychedelic Review.
During the 1970s, Ralph spent 10 years in the intensive study and practice of Agni Yoga, a meditative system of working with light-fire life-energies. He wrote Maps of Consciousness, one of the earliest attempts at a comparative cartography of consciousness; and Know Your Type, a comparative survey of personality typologies, ancient and modern. He was the Academic Dean for ten years, during the 1980s, at the California Institute of Integral Studies, where he taught courses there on "Altered States of Consciousness" and "Developing Ecological Consciousness." He is now Professor Emeritus. He maintains a part-time psychotherapy practice, and conducts numerous workshops on consciousness transformation, both nationally and internationally. His books includeThe Well of Remembrance, The Unfolding Self, Green Psychology,and two edited collections on the science and the phenomenology ofAyahuasca and Teonanácatl.
Richard Lee has been working to end cannabis prohibition for 17 years. In 1992 he co-founded Legal Marijuana - The Hemp Store in Houston, Texas, one of the first hemp products retail outlets in the United States. Lee moved to Oakland in 1997 and co-founded the Hemp Research Company, supplying cannabis to the Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Club and researching efficient and environmentally friendly cannabis horticulture. In 1999, he opened the Bulldog Coffeeshop, the second cannabis outlet in "Oaksterdam". In 2003 Lee founded the Oakland Civil Liberties Alliance, the PAC that passed Oakland's Measure Z making private sales, cultivation, and possession of cannabis the lowest law enforcement priority and mandating that Oakland tax and regulate cannabis as soon as possible under state law.
From 2005 to 2007, Lee published the Oaksterdam News quarterly newspaper with a circulation of over 100,000. In 2007, he founded the first cannabis college in the United States, Oaksterdam University. In 2008 he funded the startup of the monthly magazine West Coast Cannabis, current circulation 30,000. Since 2005, Lee has been serving on the City of Oakland Cannabis Regulation and Revenue Ordinance Commission, which was created after Measure Z passed with 65% of the vote 2004. He manages several other Oaksterdam companies, including the Oaksterdam Gift Shop and Nursery. His dedication to ending cannabis prohibition continues to play a crucial role in the revitalization and economic growth of Oakland.
STEVE DEANGELO, Executive Director of Harborside Health Center, Lifelong Cannabis Activist and Man in the News. CNN, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, the BBC, Fortune magazine, The Huffington Post, and dozens other media sources have given significant coverage to Stephen DeAngelo's innovative, successful Harborside Health Center in recent months. His creation of a model medical cannabis dispensary has projected him to the forefront of the news media. At the base of this success is his lifelong activism in deconstructing the stigma that has been built around marijuana and hemp. His extensive knowledge in this area has made him a respected authority in the cannabis/hemp industries.
Swami Beyondananda a.k.a. Steve Bhaerman is an internationally known author, humorist, and workshop leader. For the past 23 years, he has written and performed as Swami Beyondananda, the "Cosmic Comic." Swami's comedy has been called "irreverently uplifting" and has been described both as "comedy disguised as wisdom" and "wisdom disguised as comedy."
As the Swami, Steve is the author of Driving Your Own Karma (1989), When You See a Sacred Cow, Milk It For All It's Worth (1993), Duck Soup for the Soul (1999) and Swami for Precedent: A 7-Step Plan to Heal the Body Politic and Cure Electile Dysfunction (2004).
In his "past life" (before Swami), Steve started an alternative high school in Washington, D.C. and co-authored a book about his experiences, No Particular Place to Go: Making of a Free High School. A political science major, he later taught history to autoworkers at Wayne State University in Detroit as part of the Weekend College. In 1980, Steve co-founded Pathways Magazine in Ann Arbor, Michigan, one of the first publications bringing together holistic health, personal growth, spirituality, and politics. Subsequent to Pathways, Steve was a freelance writer and co-author with Don McMillan of Friends and Lovers: How to Meet the People You Want to Meet (Writer's Digest Books, 1986).
Since 2005, Steve has written a political blog with a spiritual perspective, Notes From the Trail, hailed as an encouraging voice "in the bewilderness." His latest book, written with cellular biologist Bruce H. Lipton, PhD is Spontaneous Evolution: Our Positive Future and a Way to Get There From Here (Hay House, 2009). Steve is active in transpartisan politics and the practical application of Spontaneous Evolution.
Swami Chaitanya, aka "The Swami of Pot," came from an ivy league world to San Francisco to become a hippie in 1967. He was later initiated into Jnana and Raja Yoga after living in India for many years. He is a teacher to many through actions and words, which include spreading higher consciousness about sungrown cannabis. He currently resides on a farm in Northern California.
Tim Blake is a grower, philanthropist, and advocate for medical marijuana for forty years. He is one of the foremost experts in the cultivation of environmentally correct outdoor cannabis and a leader in the transition, marijuana growers are facing to become law abiding citizens, he has been featured in media such as Rolling Stone Magazine, MSNBC, BBC, Newsweek, the History Channel and others.
Tim has experienced the healing power of this sacred herb by personally using cannabis to help cure several skin and bone cancers. He co-founded the Mendocino Farmers Collective. The MFC is the first legally sanctioned outdoor, environmentally compliant medical cannabis growers collective in Mendocino County. Tim owns and manages, Area 101, a spiritual sanctuary and event center that has been a launching pad for the debate on marijuana. For the past seven years Tim has produced "The Emerald Cup" at Area 101, the first and longest running outdoor cannabis competition in the United States.
Several years ago, a series of debates between potential sheriff and district attorney candidates brought growers and law enforcement together. They discussed how to segue cannabis into everyday society. Tim helped found The Mendocino Medical Marijuana Advisory Board The MMAB is a non-profit group that was created to research, educate and influence policy on all aspects of medical marijuana.
Mendocino County is a national leader on medical cannabis legislation and recently created the 9.31 permitting program. Participants in the program, can grow up to ninety nine plants under State and County law. Tim was one of the twelve permitted participants in the first year of this successful program, and plans to apply again this second year.
Tony Serra has spent his life defending society's outcasts. He began his practice in the 1960's, an era he calls the golden age of law. Perceiving himself in the role of a warrior, Mr. Serra has continued to battle for more freedom for more people through law. His role in the Chol Soo Lee case was depicted in the film True Believer. Tony Serra has always known how to express the poetry of the law, while
fighting in the ditches and dark alleys of legal practice. He has gained national prominence for his closing argument techniques.
Tony is a Graduate of Stanford University, Philosophy and U.C. Berkeley, Boalt Hall, Law Review. He has practiced criminal defense
for over forty years, specializing in jury trials. Among other awards, Tony was given the 2008 NORML “Lester Grinspoon Award” for
Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Marijuana Law Reform and was recognized in 1992 by the Drug Policy Foundation for Achievement in the Field of Law.
Zusha Elinson covers bikes, buses, BART, buildings, and buds at the
Bay Citizen. This year, he covered Prop 19 and developments in the
booming medical marijuana business in the Bay Area. He was a legal
reporter at the Recorder, an editor at the Marinscope in Sausalito and
I started my career at the Oakland Post, an African American weekly
paper in Oakland.