5 years ago, we held the cannabis job fair and Herbal Risings career class at the Windemere Hotel & Conference Center sponsored by Health 4 Life Dispensary. We were proud of the hotel for taking the journey with us. Cannabis was not as mainstream as it is today. Things were still quiet on the business side. There wasn’t a whole lot of positive social media hype.
This was the biggest event I had ever organized. I was a nervous wreck. Things were different then. We had to get special permission from the hotel to have a non-medicated cannabis event. Our room was situated next to a wedding party. I was afraid they would be upset. At break time, I saw the best thing! Students and our reps were mingling with the wedding party. It was all smiles. Questions were being answered, and people were speaking good things of the plant. Sharing stories of how it helped people get through tough times. I underestimated cannabis appreciation. At lunch, caterers came in with endless silver platters of pizza and pitchers of iced tea. My husband barely remembers this part because he was orchestrating the whole thing, telling his origin stories, answering job inquiries, and being a general badass. I was the living camera, recording moments to remember.
This was the kickoff to mountains of classes for years to come. I’ve watched this industry grow up, from the inside, outside and all around. I am forever grateful to have been at the frontlines of the emerging business side of cannabis. We’ve seen the business in its baby beginnings of delicacy and fear to it’s loud and proud billboard-toting multi-million dollar industry that it’s become. What a wild ride.
April is a contributor to Staff MMJ, Chief Technology Officer of Herbal Risings, and Communications Director for Arizona NORML. Her experience working as a dispensary inventory control specialist first sparked her interest in expanding cannabis acceptance and tolerance within families. She also serves as the voice for animals, and advocates for chronic pain, pelvic health, and women’s health issues.