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Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference Returns To Eugene


oregon medical marijuana business conference ommbcAnyone familiar with my political activism knows that civil liberties and social justice are my primary focuses in the cannabis field. I want to end the arrest and prosecution of the cannabis community, when they aren’t hurting anyone else. I am proud to have helped lead three successful marijuana law reform measures to victory at the ballot box (lost two elections, but no need to dwell on those), including having the honor to co-author and serve as Chief Petitioner of Measure 91 in Oregon.

However, I understand the political and practical realities of sensible regulations and good neighbor business practices for the cannabis movement. Cannabis consumers need those who cultivate, process and sale cannabis while voters and communities need assurances that marijuana will be regulated in a way that addresses their concerns regarding kids and public safety. Creating jobs and generating tax revenue also appeal to many voters. Additionally, when political advocates and the industry work together, positive cannabis law reform goes from theory to reality. For these reasons and others, I am proud to help organize the Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference (OMMBC) as well as the International Cannabis Business Conference (proudly named The Weed Blog’s Marijuana Event of 2014).

The OMMBC returns to Eugene this year on March 15-16 at the downtown Hilton. The Oregon cannabis industry is in a transitional phase as the Oregon state Legislature and Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) are working on implementing the commercial regulations following the passage of the Measure 91 legalization measure. While we await for the Measure 91 growers, processors and retailers, there are more than 200 licensed medical marijuana facilities across the state that are being served by amazing Oregon cannabis cultivators and processors.

While some, including Governor John Kitzhaber, the OLCC, Association of Oregon Counties, League of Oregon Cities and Oregon’s various law enforcement agencies are hoping to merge the medical program with the adult use system under the OLCC (if not disband the entire medical program altogether), most of the cannabis community, myself included, are working hard to keep the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program intact and separate, just as over 56% of voters intended when passing Measure 91. The OMMBC will provide a political update regarding the status of the OMMP and Measure 91 rules as well as hands-on advice for marijuana entrepreneurs and advocates.

The conference’s keynote speaker is Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico and presidential candidate who has now moved into the cannabis industry as CEO of Cannabis Sativa. Other notable speakers include Steve DeAngelo, founder of Harborside Medical Center, the largest cannabis dispensary in the world and the ArcView Group, the nation’s preeminent cannabis investor group; Tom Burns, who has now been tasked with implementing Oregon’s Measure 91 legalization system after handling the state’s implementation of state licensed and regulated medical marijuana facilities; Oregon State Senator Floyd Prozanski, Chair of the Oregon Senate Judiciary Committee and Co-Vice Chair of the Oregon Joint Committee on Implementing Measure 91; Jeremy Sacket of Cascadia Labs and Todd Dalotto of CAN Research will provide information on the testing of cannabis and the efforts to regulate the testing industry; and long-time cannabis law reform advocate and criminal defense attorney, Leland Berger, who founded Oregon Cannabis Compliance Counsel to help cannabis entrepreneurs meet all of the necessary rules and regulations imposed by all levels of government.

Entertainment will be provided to all attendees by hip-hop legend Del the Funky Homosapien at Cozmic Pizza on March 15, it is a severe understatement to say that I am very excited about that performance. Many exhibitors and vendors will be on hand, providing tremendous networking opportunities for those in the cannabis industry or thinking of joining. I am certainly looking forward to this year’s event and I hope to see you there.

WHAT: Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference (OMMBC) Eugene

WHO: Entrepreneurs, dispensaries, growers, professionals, those interested in the industry

WHEN: Sunday, March 15, 10am – 5pm

Monday, March 16, 10am – 5pm

WHERE: Hilton in Downtown Eugene, 66 E. 6th Avenue, Eugene, Oregon 97401

TICKETS: Conference badges are currently $299 and available online at www.ommbc.com/tickets/; in person at Northwest Alternative Health locations in Eugene and Medford, as well as Ashland Alternative Health. Or people may call 1-888-920-6076 to purchase with a credit or debit card.


About Author

Anthony Johnson is the director of New Approach Oregon, the PAC responsible for Measure 91, that ended cannabis prohibition for all Oregon adults in 2014. In addition to helping organize the International Cannabis Business Conference & the Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference, he also serves as a Board Member of the National Cannabis Coalition, working to legalize cannabis across the country and Show-Me Cannabis Regulation, an organization specifically working to end cannabis prohibition in Missouri. As President of the University of Missouri Law School ACLU Chapter, Anthony co-authored the measures that legalized medical cannabis possession and decriminalized personal possession for all adults within the city limits of Columbia, Missouri, in 2004. Following law school, Anthony practiced criminal defense for two years before working full time in the political field to help improve and protect civil liberties. You can follow Anthony on Twitter and also friend him on Facebook by following the links below as he posts mostly about civil liberties and politics with dashes of sports, music, movies and whatnot.


  1. Debilitating conditions don’t have to be shown all the time. You don’t have to been in a wheelchair to have a debilitating illness. If your illness keeps you from working, getting out of the house, spending time with friends and family, unable to drive, or unable to live without assistance of any kind (not counting unfortunate events that may happen in life) that is debilitating. I am an OMMP patient, but my illness is not always shown. I have good and bad days. Just because, at times, I feel better and want to do things for myself, does not mean my illness isn’t debilitating. I can’t work because of how sick I get. I have, what is believed to be, severe gastroparesis and IBS. I wake up every morning to run to my bathroom and expel anything that may be in my stomach because I can’t digest food like most can. Because, even though I try to eat less triggering food, I still have pain almost every day. I get attacks almost every day now. My husband has had to stop what he has been doing and rush to my side to help me so I don’t pass out from the vomiting or pain. I have spent the past 6 years in and out of hospital after hospital, specialist after specialist, taken a plethora of medication to help, with dangerous side affects. The many pills I have had to take to control this as much as I do with medical cannabis, which still not perfect, have caused worse issues than the one it is treating me for. I live with pain most of of the time, but because I have good days when my body decides to work, that means this isn’t debilitating? It isn’t debilitating to get married and then have to be supported by your husband and family because you can’t work? Or to have to always cancel plans because you can’t leave your bathroom for very long. I can’t drive myself because of my illness. I can’t complete tasks at times because I get an attack that leaves me rolling on the floor in pain. When I have tried to work through this, tried to keep a job and just let it pass, I have ended up at at the hospital.

    You may have encountered people who take advantage of the system, of you, but that is not everyone.

  2. How are most OMMP patients suffering from actual debilitating conditions? I have had one wheelchair guy out of dozens of average people who would subsist fine without drugs at all. Every patient I meet wants me to give them the same amount of free drugs that I give to the wheelchair guy. I’ve had patients think they were entitled to sell to pay the rent.

  3. Our job is not to placate their fears. Our job is to eradicate fears.

    I must not fear.
    Fear is the mind-killer.
    Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
    I will face my fear.
    I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
    And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
    Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
    Only I will remain.

  4. The problem is this:

    Every tax, every regulation comes with it an army of bureaucrats and behind that an army (with guns) of enforcers.

    No more taxed or regulated than tomatoes.

    We are having a hard enough time getting rid of the DEA. Do we want to add new armies we will have to defeat?

    Do we want a legal cartel to replace an illegal one?

  5. How are OMMP patients served if they combine medical and recreational? Won’t that create situations where patients cannot obtain their meds because someone else bought it to get high? Price won’t matter if it’s not even available.
    Funny how WA has the same outlook for medical, can CO be far behind?

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