Introducing the High Minded podcast, by The Cannabist

Welcome to High Minded by The Cannabist, our podcast diving into the stories, news and voices shaping a new billion-dollar industry.

High Minded is a podcast in three acts, hosted by The Cannabist’s editor, Alex Pasquariello.

Act I features serial news storytelling from our team of award-winning journalists. In Act II, Alex leads “The Conversation” with marijuana’s movers and shakers in government, law and business. For Act III, we turn over the microphone to leaders on all sides of the legalization movement in a segment we call “Closing Arguments.”

Enjoy our first episode, and follow this podcast on Twitter at @HighMindedCast. Got feedback or a nominee to be on the podcast? Drop us a line here.


High Minded by The Cannabist
Season 1, Episode 1

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Act I

CBD, TBD with Alicia Wallace
Forbidden medicine: Caught between a doctor’s cannabidiol advice and federal laws

High Minded launches its Season 1 serial series “CBD, TBD” in New York, where Paul Pasiecznik’s quest to help his epileptic sister with cannabidiol from Colorado is being stymied by the system.

Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive cannabis compound touted for its medicinal promise — but marijuana- and hemp-derived extracts rich in CBD and low in intoxicating THC are facing a future yet to be determined.

“CBD TBD” with Alicia Wallace explores the issues with CBD — federal-state conflicts, national drug policy, pioneering research efforts and the paths toward the compound’s full legalization.

Act II

The Conversation, hosted by Alex Pasquariello

High Minded’s Season 1 Conversation is framed by a months-long correspondence The Cannabist has dubbed, “The Sessions Letters.”

Since April 2017, the U.S. attorney general has sent missives to officials in the first four states to legalize adult-use marijuana — Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington — raising serious questions about their respective regulatory and enforcement regimes.

High Minded convened a panel of Colorado’s top government officials to discuss their state’s response to Sessions.

The Conversation unpacks how Colorado is keeping its residents safe with:

  • Mark Bolton, adviser to Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper on marijuana policy
  • Dr. Larry Wolk, executive director and Chief Medical Officer for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
  • Michael Hartman, executive director of the Colorado Department of Revenue, the agency that oversees the state’s Marijuana Enforcement Division.
  • Glenn Davis, highway safety manager for Colorado Department of Transportation
  • Kristi Kelly, executive director of Marijuana Industry Group, a state-based trade association facilitating ongoing public-private collaboration to realize the state’s public safety and health goals.

Act III

Closing Arguments

The podcast’s first Closing Arguments are made by Wanda James, who says legalization continues to be a “we the people” movement. James is a longtime political activist and marijuana advocate, former U.S. Navy lieutenant, entrepreneur and owner of Denver’s Simply Pure dispensary.

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