Cheryl Shuman is perhaps one of the most polarizing leaders in marijuana business and reform. While she lands major network press on several occasions, she seems to have a certain sect of the industry opposing her endeavors. Still, here collection of mainstream PR exposures certainly sets her aside from anyone else in the game. You can regularly see her on various network news shows, CNN, and speaking at almost every cannabis expo (Including the World Cannabis Congress, in Los Angeles Today), and a slew of other popular destinations.
In the interview, Cheryl Shuman speaks with host Todd Denkin on growing up on a tobacco farm in Appalachia, couponing, being an optician to the stars, creating her brand as one of the most widely recognized figures in cannabis business, her upcoming projects, and the future of the cannabis industry.
“My entire mission is to hopefully be the person at the forefront of this, leading us to the path of full legalization, to end cannabis prohibition once and for all, and I believe we can do that by building successful companies and … giving jobs and building revenue through a tax-and-regulation business model throughout this country to help rebuild the programs that we so desperately need in our communities,” she says.
Shuman has faced criticism from the activist community for her pro-business stance and her celebrity, but she continues to believe that the best way to take cannabis mainstream is through business, and that the best way to reach the most people is through maximum media exposure. She points to celebrities like Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Cameron Diaz, and Drew Barrymore openly discussing their cannabis use as a major factor in mainstream acceptance.
“I think a lot of what’s happening, it’s like a spiritual awakening where people are saying, ‘Wow, this plant is great! It does do great things. I feel good when I use it; I have a better quality of life. It’s a safer alternative to alcohol, tobacco, and pharmaceuticals. Yeah, let’s do this!’”