Women of the Cannabis Industry, Large & in Charge
The smell of cannabis smoke was prevalent outside the doors of the Curtis Hotel Wednesday at noon as the Women Grow Leadership Summit kicked off.
Over 1,200 people were in attendance at this 3-day conference in downtown Denver, Colorado. Women Grow has only been in existence for less than two full years and is already making huge strides in the male-dominated business world as well as the newly, legalized cannabis industry.
Jane West initially wanted to create a group of women who could come together and support each other in the cannabis industry. Little did she know, she was going to do more than create a group. This for-profit company has now brought women together from about 40 cities in two countries to pursue the dream of putting women in sync to, “connect, educate, inspire and empower the next generation of cannabis industry leaders.”
The Women Grow Leadership Summit was a great opportunity for women and men, both in the industry and not, to come together to learn and grow as cannabis advocates. With speakers from diverse backgrounds, attendees from all over the world and a staff that was just as excited as the attendees, the 2nd annual Summit appeared to be an overall success. Women connected both socially and professionally.
Goody bags were passed out with all kinds of treats, including edibles, to everyone who attended. There was a party bus that took anyone interested to Mindful, a dispensary on the East side of Denver. Here, attendees had the opportunity to purchase special Women Grow vape pens in their signature color. These were just a couple of the fun perks that occurred throughout the event.
One of the biggest perks came Thursday, when Melissa Ethridge, a breast cancer survivor, stood before the audience and told jokes about her lesbian experiences, her use of cannabis in battling cancer and her adventures as a marijuana advocate. She is currently heavily involved in the cannabis industry, even letting everyone know she is working on a product launch. Her loudest message to the women in attendance was, “Cooperation, not competition, is what moves us forward.”
The networking and working lounge was open for ticket holders throughout the event. This area was brought to the attendees by The Farm, a boutique dispensary in Boulder. During breaks, this room was a bustle with people getting to know each other, meeting for business or just for getting some coffee and sitting a while. In the evening, this room and another, were converted into wonderful dinner spaces, with tons of food options sponsored by incredibles, an edible company located in Denver.
After dinner people continued to hang around and network for hours. Some people drank a little beer or wine. But, there was definitely room for cannabis consumption. Right outside of one of the rooms was an outdoor patio with a fireplace and plenty of space for all of those who wished to fire up their flower. And they did. An attendant opened and closed the large, floor to ceiling glass doors for each person that wanted to go out and partake in the fine cannabis of Colorado.
Alicia Syrett was one of many featured speakers at the summit. Syrett is the founder and CEO of Pantegrion Capital, an angel investment vehicle focused on seed and early stage investments. In her speech titled, “Your dollars and actions are your vote,” she enthusiastically stated, “What really excites me is redefining this system all together… Do we follow status quo, or do we set an example for all of the other industries out there?”
This summit showed that women really are on the forefront of the cannabis industry. As women gathered this week, bonds were made, connections were started and lifelong friendships were established. Natalie Simone, the membership coordinator for Women Grow said in her speech, “Let’s do this together!” This summit showed just how much women are truly changing the cannabis industry, together.
Did you attend the Women Grow Summit? Tell us your highlights.