This past Juneteenth the Happy Munkey crew was honored to have the CEO Vladimir Bautista speak at the EBONY Juneteenth Weekend Opportunity Cannabis Summit.
The one day event masterfully put on by Rico Lamitte and Ebony Magazine brought a community of experts, scientists, activists, entrepreneurs, and therapeutic supporters together for a day of advocacy, education, and empowerment. Over the day 53 speakers from 6 countries connected via Hoppin to share positive messaging and inspiring stories to empower future advocacy and investment in fighting for decriminalization and legalization of cannabis.
Vladimir spoke during “The Lifestyle” panel alongside Chris Ball owner of Ball Family Farms, and Erica & Jamilah of Good Moms, Bad Choices on the cultural identity of cannabis and how they see it is evolving as the corporate world makes its mark on the industry. The panel moderated by Rico Lamitte spoke directly on the undeniably connected relationship between communities of color and the cannabis plant. Highlighting the need to not only take Black contributions to the culture but to honor and include the people on the frontlines who have been pushing the movement forward. Especially when considering that currently people of color make up less than 4.6% of cannabis business owners in the legal industry.
To end the day Vlad was welcomed back on to the event stage during the closing remarks session, where he got to exchange thoughts with longtime advocate and founder of California Cannabis, Virgil Grant. The two hit it off and went back and forth discussing the importance of culture oriented brands and companies in the space. Long time Happy Munkey supporter and New Jersey cannabis advocate Leo Bridgewater also got to chime in, stressing the fact that we must lead the way in the cannabis industry going forward as more than just consumers... but as advocates, educators, business owners.
Thank You Ebony Magazine for having us and for your commitment to showcasing the best and brightest as well as highlighting disparities in black life. We hope you all had a mindful and celebratory Junetenneth. Until next time, Black Lives Matter, Much love and Peace!