Marijuana Lobbyist Discusses How Ordinary Citizens Can Work to Legalize in their States


John Davis is a founder and current executive director of the Coalition for Cannabis Standards and Ethics, a Washington-based nonprofit organization that works to perpetuate the highest levels of ethics, education, standards and quality throughout the cannabis industry. He helped draft and coordinate some of the earliest cannabis legislation initiatives as a board member of the Hemp Initiative Projects, starting as early as 1993. Later, he founded Seattle-based dispensary Northwest Patient Resource Center, which is hoping to transition into the recreational market.

John was recently interviewed by Shango Los, host of the podcast, to discuss what it takes to push state-level marijuana reform through the complicated legislative system. “If you’re really going to follow a law, if you’re going to follow a legislative cycle… you’ve got to put the work in,” John explained during the podcast. “Don’t just take other people’s words for it, because those people come with agendas and they will tell you things about a bill that’s more rumor than truth.”

The two also discuss best practices for how to approach and understand proposed legislation, how to get and stay in touch with your elected officials, and how cannabis activists can work productively with politicians and lobbyists who are not in favor of cannabis reform.

The full podcast episode is available via iTunes and, where full transcripts of this and previous interviews are also available.