From Corporate to Cannabis- Meet the Chapter President

by Veronica Castillo

Meet the Chapter President of Minorities for Medical Marijuana- Missouri

“I remember smoking Blue Dream one night. I was studying and my brain was absorbing words like a sponge. The next morning, I remembered everything from the text book- verbatim.”

Marne Madison, was the youngest manager at one point in her career; very much a go getter. It’s no surprise that she wears multiple hats and her voice in this industry is needed every day! She experienced that Cannabis was saving her life during her freshman year of college. 

“I was sitting in my dorm room one afternoon I came across an Endocannabinoid forum with Dr. Sue Sisley. It was the Summer of 2010 when I learned why and how Cannabis was saving my life.”

She attended seminars, attended one of the most popular Cannabis colleges, and patiently waited on her Cannabis opportunity, hoping for the day Missouri would legalize. Well they did! Today, Marne is the Chapter President of Minorities for Medical Marijuana- Missouri!

But not only that, she is the Founder of Green Girls, A Medical Herb, and Fleur Verte Academy, the infrastructure to pipeline inner city residents into Cannabis. But not only that- Marne is also the Co-Owner of, Fleur Verte Telehealth Clinic. 

Learn More About Marne’s Journey into Cannabis

(Interview slightly edited for clarity)

You completed coursework/a program at one of the most recognized Cannabis education institutions in the U.S; what was your mission and what was it like learning about Cannabis without fear of jail?

“I attended Oaksterdam University in Oakland, California, where I received my Cannabis Business Management Certifications. I was around Cannabis culture for quite some time. I had friends in college who were in the mountains in Colorado at the beginning of the push for legalization around the country. 

To be able to sit in this classroom and be taught by some of the first to do it was surreal. My mission at the time was solely to complete my certifications for my dispensary application but after learning so much about cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes, there was no turning back! 

Being able to attend this institute with people from all over the country learning about this plant and knowing there are still people incarcerated, pushed my mission further into advocating for my community. Providing resources to learn about the legal industry in Missouri was a necessity.”

Please tell us about all of your hats and businesses, canna BOSS.

I am the Founder of Green Girls, A Medical Herb, known for our infamous Terpene pre rolls. We pair high potency CBD hemp flower with some of the best terpene profiles you’ve ever come across. Our goal is to help patients alleviate their pain and other ailments of discomfort, by focusing on their symptoms and the terpenes that help to balance their respective CB receptors. We have had great reviews from patients with partial facial paralysis, insomnia, anxiety, and more. 

Fleur Verte Academy is an institute created and founded by myself. We house the infrastructure to pipeline inner city residents into Cannabis. I partnered up with Elite Home Growers to provide Beginners Grow classes and Cannabis Stock Investment classes at a prorated price. Upon completion of class students receive a certificate to attach to cannabis resumes or show to patients when home cultivating.

I am the Co-Owner of one of the first women of colored owned and operated telehealth clinics, Fleur Verte Telehealth Clinic. My business partner Dawn the Cannabis Advocate, and myself, help residents become legal in both Missouri and Illinois. Dawn and I host events to keep our Cannabis community engaged, aware, and informed with what is going on throughout the state. 

I am the Chapter President of Minorities for Medical Marijuana- Missouri. We are a national nonprofit founded by Roz McCarthy in Orlando Florida. I was honored to be asked to lead this phenomenal organization in 2019, after having a great year of leadership in the Missouri industry. 

I was introduced to M4MM in March of 2019 after bringing their Cannabis Business Licensing Bootcamp accelerator to Saint Louis. I attended the 4-week course where investors, license owners, consulting firms, and advocates came to give insight on what to expect inside of the application process.

What was/is the hardest thing that you faced/are facing, as a woman/ black woman in the Cannabis industry?

“The hardest thing about being a black woman in this industry is, just that! I am a black woman under 30 who has to fight 10 times harder to be recognized or even talked to in this industry. I was the youngest supervisor in logistics operations, as well as the youngest warehouse manager for a fortune 500 company. 

Although my credentials should be more than enough, I am overlooked before given a chance. I won the first Cannabis investment pitch competition in the state of Missouri which probably made me the most vetted social equity applicant in the state. 

I’ve stood in some of the largest cultivation facilities in this country with some of the top Cannabis brands to only receive the most exploiting agreements ever. I have found myself to be the only black woman in several rooms in this predominantly white male industry with no acknowledgement. 

But that’s why I show up, because if I don’t, who will? I have dissected our legislation to equip my community with the confidence they need to integrate into the Cannabis industry. With the opportunity to grow up to 18 plants and provide medicine to each other, we are creating a co-op and eventually a full community vertical company. 

Social justice is just as important as social equity, we must stand up to this industry and demand equality and respect. We are paying taxes on a plant, and paying taxes for prisoners in jail for selling this same plant. A double standard I can no longer support. The Cannabis Industry needs to be reevaluated expeditiously.”

Veronica Castillo

Veronica Castillo is a Writer from Miami, with a background in insurance and human resources. Currently, she is a resident of the road on an exploration of all thing’s cannabis and hemp. Veronica’s mission is to educate, inform, and destigmatize because she believes in the power of love for all plant medicine. You can find her work on Medium and in multiple industry publications. You can also follow her journey Instagram.

Veronica Castillo has 4 posts and counting. See all posts by Veronica Castillo

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