Ophelia Chong, Stock Pot Images
My hope for women of color in the cannabis industry is to hold fast and hard. We need to push to be heard, and our opinion matters, we are the consumers, the makers, the mavens of the word of mouth.
How would you describe yourself and what you do?
I am a curator for the real faces and communities of cannabis. My mission is to educate the general public about what cannabis is.
What inspired you to start your company and when and how did you get started? What is your vision and mission for your Canna endeavors?
Last January 2015, my sister was visiting from a foreign country and she was curious as to how cannabis could help with her scleroderma . As we tried different edibles and oils, I was watching her reactions; and I was curious as to how cannabis users were portrayed in the media. I searched through the major stock photography sites, and what I saw surprised me in not a good way. No one looked like my sister. That is how Stock Pot Images started, through love and a passion for truth.
What’s your Cannabis Origin Story? What is your Superpower?
My story started with an image – an image of my sister and the images created by the media that demonized her and other cannabis users. This is not who we are. I believe that images are weapons of change, they unlock doors for viewers to see what is on the other side. That is my superpower, the power of the image.
What has been your greatest obstacle in this industry to date – and how have you overcome it – or are you still working on tackling it?
The only obstacle I’ve seen is in Venture Capital, the lack of understanding of how powerful an image is to change the world, and how it can benefit them with their investments. When money is foremost and an ideal is just a buzzword to sell a product, then nothing will change that mindset. To invest in a product without the support of imagery is like selling generic food in white bags with just the name printed on front.
What is your vision for women in this industry? What would you like women to know about entering the Cannabis industry?
My hope for women of color in the cannabis industry is to hold fast and hard. On any panel at any major conference, you will see a majority of white males and women. We need to push to be heard, and our opinion matters, we are the consumers, the makers, the mavens of the word of mouth. We should not only gather together, but we must also enter the fray and speak loudly and be heard. That is my vision for women and women of color in the cannabis industry.
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