Lisa said: “Learn to trust other women, support other women-owned businesses, and connect women to one another. This is how we will increase our visibility and participation in this space. You can be a part of herstory.”
Describe yourself and what you do.
I am the Founder & CEO of Tokeativity. We work to empower women at the root level and forward the normalization of cannabis.
When did you get started working with cannabis? What is your vision for your professional cannabis endeavors?
I started pursuing working in the cannabis industry in 2015, but didn’t officially launch Tokeativity until January 2017.
After 15 years producing feminist events, 300+ projects in my web design business and the death of my parents to cancer, I moved to Oregon to explore my creative life with my wife, Cat. I came up with the idea for Tokeativity, after legalization in 2015, inspired by a dinner and vision board craft night I hosted for close friends.
I am obsessed with removing barriers for women of all kinds, helping women find their inner freedom, and being an activist in the consumption movement. I have seen first hand that the work we are doing is liberating women, and my number one priority is supporting women’s liberation.
What is your personal cannabis origin story?
I have worked on the web since the mid 90’s and have created and organized feminist events since 2005. I am the daughter of an Emmy Award winning CBS television video engineer and grew up organizing the neighborhood children. As the internet emerged, I used the combined efforts of technology and live events to create communities across the country.
My dad died of cancer the day before my 23rd birthday. After his death, I attended a festival built 100% by women and lived among a women-only society for over a week. After reflecting on my experience, it was clear to me how important it was that women have their own space, away from the everyday dramas of our world. I created a meetup for bisexual and lesbian women (that has been running since 2008) and a feminist non profit in New York City. Soon after my mom was diagnosed with Leukemia. I attempted to get her access to cannabis, but was dismissed by all hospital personnel.
After her death in 2009, I moved to Portland Oregon with my wife and decided to embark on bringing women together once again but this time, combining the education and normalization that I saw the world was missing.
I met my business partner, Samantha Montanaro, who had been curating cannabis events since legalization, and in January 2017 we launched our Oregon-based, global cannabis community Tokeativity.
What is your Superpower?
Helping liberate women by inspiring them to move beyond their own limitations.
What has been your greatest obstacle in this industry or with your business to date?
I think our greatest obstacle is the patriarchy. The patriarchy is a system that was set up to provide access and resources to white men. I believe that everyone has the right to gather. Explaining to people why women need their own space to focus on self care even a few hours has been the most challenging.
I believe that people of all backgrounds have the right to gather. I believe that people of color deserve to gather and be away from the white gaze and I believe that women deserve to be away from the male gaze. They should have the freedom to go somewhere they aren’t afraid someone is going to grab their ass or spike their drink. The patriarchy likes to scare women into thinking they don’t have resources. We must show up and prove to women that our greatest asset is our relationship with one another. This is the long game, and we are far from where we need to be, but are getting closer every time we gather and support other women.
“I have seen first hand that the work we are doing is liberating women, and my number one priority is supporting women’s liberation.”
What is your advice for women in the cannabis industry?
My vision for women is that we as women understand our worth and we understand that banding together is our strongest asset in this emerging industry. That is the best and most direct way of bypassing the patriarchy’s desire to conquer what they perceive to be “the weak.” Our relationship with one another and our bonds are our greatest asset that can never be bought, sold, or taken away. Learn to trust other women, support other women-owned businesses, and connect women to one another. This is how we will increase our visibility and participation in this space. You can be a part of herstory.
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