Cannabis Science Conference Honors the Wisdom of Women

In honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, we’re highlighting the talented female experts that will be presenting at the upcoming 2022 Cannabis Science Conference West on May 18-20 in Long Beach, California.

In honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, we’re featuring the amazingly talented female experts that will be presenting at our upcoming 2022 Cannabis Science Conference West May 18-20 in Long Beach, California. All these phenomenal women have played a part in the evolution of cannabis science and medicine and worked to end the stigma associated with cannabis. It is an honor to have the opportunity to work with such amazing presenters year after year. We are proud to play a part in lifting the voices of women and minorities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), cannabis, and psychedelics. I hope you enjoy reading about this wonderful group of individuals!

Our female speakers include (speakers listed alphabetically by last name):

  • Patricia Atkins, Senior Applications Scientist, Spex, an Antalya Scientific Company
    Talk title
    : Cannabis, Chemistry, and Chromatography: Examining the Challenges of Cannabis Sample Processing, Analysis, and the Role of Reference Materials
    Biography: Patricia Atkins has been a Senior Applications Scientist at Spex for more than 13 years. She is a graduate of Rutgers University in NJ and was a laboratory supervisor for Ciba Specialty Chemicals. Patricia conducted research and managed an air pollution research group within Rutgers University.
  • Moriah Barnhart, Executive Director & Co-Founder, Wise FL & CannaMoms
    : Pediatric Cannabis Parents
    Biography: Moriah Barnhart’s introduction to cannabis as medicine came in 2013 when her daughter was diagnosed with aggressive brain cancer at the age of two. She has since co-founded two first-of-their-kind federally approved non-profits, co-authorized Florida’s first CME-approved program on cannabis for physicians, and currently sits on the State of Florida Department of Agriculture Hemp Advisory Committee.
  • Laura Barrett-Nutting, MBA, BSN, RN, Clinical Director, Nurse Laura
    : Expansion of the Clinical Directors Consortium
    Biography: Laura Barrett-Nutting, MBA, BSN, RN, is a plant-based and integrative medicine nurse who brings more than 20 years of experience helping patients cope with critical illness and chronic disease. Her enthusiasm for wellness and food as medicine led her to explore the multiple medical cannabinoid options available.
  • Gabriele Bertelli, Regional Sales Manager, Microfluidics International Corporation
    Talk title
    : Solubilizing Cannabis Ingredients for Improved Bio-Availability Through Nano-Emulsification Technology
    Biography: Gabi has more than 20 years of experience with the Microfluidizer® technology and its applications across multiple industries. This knowledge enables her to better understand customers’ needs and requirements and thus select the best solutions that allow customers to successfully develop and manufacture their desired products.
  • AC Braddock, CEO, Eden Labs, LLC
    Talk title
    : Psychedelic Sustainability
    Biography: AC Braddock is the visionary CEO of Eden Labs, an internationally recognized, 26-year-old botanical extraction technology company.AC is well known for her leadership in modern business practices, early recognition of growth sectors in scientifically-based health and wellness advancements and technically and ethically supporting market creation for the sustainable, long-term success of the industry.
  • Lisa Buchanan, RN, Speakers Bureau Member, Cannabis Nurses Network
    Nurses Network: A Revolution in Healthcare
    Biography: Lisa Buchanan is a registered nurse and patient advocate who has cared for patients in Washington state for more than 25 years. Her specialty is oncology (cancer) care, and she has been an oncology certified nurse since 2013.
  • Marcie Cooper, RN, MSN, AHN-BC, Speakers Bureau Member, Cannabis Nurses Network
    : Nurses Network: A Revolution in Healthcare
    PANEL: A Nurses Role in Spirit Medicine: Nurturing the Psychedelic Renaissance
    Biography: Marcie Cooper first became interested in cannabis medicine as she saw an increase in patients using cannabis and knew she needed a better understanding. The knowledge gained was so profound, that she found herself emerging in the science of cannabis.
  • Nekeidra Cromwell, CEO, KeidyWeedy
    Talk title
    : Opioid Addiction Antidote
    Biography: Nekeidra is CEO of KeidyWeedy and the director of Community Outreach for the National Cannabis Party. Cannabis saved her life after brain surgery. Nereida helps to decrease the stigma and increase awareness of the benefits of medicinal cannabis. She assists the community with the education and resources that are available.
  • Heather Despres, PFC Program Coordinator, Americans for Safe Access
    Talk title
    : Analysis of State Cannabis Regulations
    Biography: Heather Despres is Director of PFC at Americans for Safe Access, a non-profit whose mission is to ensure safe, legal access to cannabis for therapeutic use and research, the first and only ISO 17065 accredited cannabis compliance program in the US.
  • Dr. Alison Draisin, PsyD, LMHC, Director of KAP Provider Training, Aims Institute
    : Exploration of Protocols and Competencies in Cannabis and Psychedelic Assisted Psychotherapies
    Biography: Dr. Alison Draisin is the founder and CEO of Ettalew’s Edibles (established in 2009), past President of the Board of Directors for the Center for Cannabis and Social Policy (CASP), and an original member of Women of Weed. As an active member of the Washington state cannabis community, she speaks publicly on cannabis education locally and nationally. Alison seeks to support women by connecting them to the cannabis community and empowering women to rise within the cannabis industry.
  • Tess Eidem, Ph.D., Director of Science, Willow Industries
    Talk title
    : From Microbes to Testing: Understanding and Preventing Contamination
    Biography: Tess earned her Ph.D. in pathology and microbiology from the University of Nebraska Medical Center and the University of Rochester. She strives to improve scientific standards within the industry by applying previously unused microbiological methods to production. Tess works with Willow’s partners to address source contamination with quality assurance programs.
  • Renee Engle-Goodner, MS, Principal Consultant, REG Science, LLC
    Talk title
    : Post-Harvest Loss Mitigation: Aspergillus Across the Supply Chain
    Biography: Renee worked in postharvest discovery science, focusing on volatile antimicrobial treatments of crops to increase shelf-life. As an analytical lab manager, she worked in the wine industry, ensuring quality from grape to wine. These experiences blend ideally for the cannabis industry where she works as a consultant.
  • Dr. Bonni Goldstein, Medical Director, Canna-Centers Wellness & Education
    Talk title
    : Cannabis and Children: A Pediatrician’s Experience
    Biography: Bonni Goldstein, MD is the Medical Director of Canna-Centers Wellness & Education, a California-based medical practice devoted to educating patients about the use of cannabis for serious and chronic medical conditions.She has a special interest in treating children with intractable epilepsy, autism, cancer, and other conditions.
  • Rhea Graham, Medicine Woman, Albany’s Canna Kitchen & Research, LLC
    Talk title: 
    Smokeless Cannabis Remedies
    Biography: Rhea and her daughter opened Albany’s Canna Kitchen & Research on 11/11/11.Her ACKR Clinic provides doctors with cannabis card certifications. Currently, she has taken on the role as caregiver to over 100 OMMP patients and plans to open her Healing-Life Center in 2022. Smokeless cannabis remedies for the win!
  • Kaylene Gray, NP, Clinical Director, Grow West
    : Expansion of the Clinical Directors Consortium
    Biography: Kaylene Gray, PMHNP-BC has spent more than 16 years working with patients in the hospital setting. Her experiences include ER, PACU, ICU, and nursing administration. Now going into her fourth year as a cannabis nurse, Kaylene is a Clinical Director and General Manager of a medical dispensary in Maryland.
  • Dr. Jacklyn Green, CEO, Agate Biosciences, LLC
    Talk title
    : Clean Cannabis
    Biography: Dr. Jacklyn R. Green is the CEO of Agate Biosciences LLC, a science, research, and management innovation consultancy. She focuses on project management, systems engineering, and sustainability research in the cannabis business arena. She provides individualized problem-solving and helps to companies in need of answers.
  • Sandra Guynes, MSN, RN, Speakers Bureau Member, Cannabis Nurses Network
    : Nurses Network: A Revolution in Healthcare
    Biography: Sandra Guynes, MSN, RN, has been a longtime advocate, educator, and provider of holistic health to mothers and babies. With a personal understanding of postpartum depression and anxiety, Sandra works with women, veterans, and their families navigating cannabis for health and wellness.
  • Martha Hernandez, Scientist,
    Talk title
    : How to Automate QA/QC Workflows in Cannabis Testing
    Talk title: Be Lab Ready: USDA’s Hemp Testing Rules Have Changed
    Biography: Martha Hernández is a clinical chemist with a master’s degree in pharmacy. She has rich experience in analytical chemistry, clinical research, and forensics. She has participated in international conferences in France and the USA.
  • Dr. Jeanette Jacknin, President, Dr. Jacknin’s Skincare, LLC
    Talk title
    : The Minor Cannabinoids, Minor No More
    Biography: Dr. Jacknin is a board-certified dermatologist, author, national speaker, and consultant, with expertise in holistic dermatology, natural cosmeceuticals, and topical cannabinoids for beauty and health. She is the first dermatologist and top expert in the science behind CBD for beauty and skin disorders.
  • Dr. Lakisha Jenkins-Samuels, Traditional Naturopath, Dr. Lakisha™️
    Talk title
    : Dietary Modulation of the eCS
    Biography: Dr. Lakisha is a traditional naturopath and registered clinical herbalist. Her core competencies include utilizing herbs as the basis of nutrition to combat the symptoms of chronic, degenerative, and terminal illness. While her focus includes the biochemical and physiological effect of phytocannabinoids, she is an advocate for all plant medicine.
  • Dr. Anahid Jewett, Professor and Director of Tumor Immunology Laboratory, UCLA School of Dentistry and Medicine
    : Saving Sophie: The Mom, the Scientist, and Their Journey to Cure Cancer
    Biography: Dr. Jewett is the Professor and Director of tumor immunology laboratory at the UCLA School of Dentistry and Medicine. She has published seminal work in tumor immunology and cancer immunotherapy, in particular NK immunotherapy. She holds many key patents and has given more than 200 invited lectures nationally and internationally. She has published more than 100 research articles and has served on several NIH study section panels. She has trained more than 150 graduate students and health professionals in her laboratory. Additionally, Dr. Jewett has been researching medical cannabis and its effectiveness as a cancer treatment for the last 4 years.
  • Holly E. Johnson, PhD, Chief Science Officer, American Herbal Products Association
    : The Varieties of Cannabis Regulatory Experiences: The Intersection of Standards, Regulations, and Research
    Biography: A pharmacognosist and ethnobotanist specializing in botanical dietary supplements; characterization of botanical materials; standards setting; phytochemical extraction; herbal products manufacture, quality control, and formulation; sustainable sourcing and botanical supply chains. Holly has more than 20 years’ experience with botanicals and advises many groups including USP’s Cannabis Expert Panel and AOAC International.
  • Autumn Karcey, CEO & Founder, Alchemy 29 & Cultivo, Inc.
    : Making Sustainable Decisions in Cultivation Facility Design
    Biography: Over the past 16 years, Ms. Karcey has consulted on facilities in more than 17 US states and four Countries. Autumn Karcey is the CEO and Founder of Alchemy 29, a 30-acre cannabis farm and manufacturing facility located in Lake County, California. Alchemy 29 specializes in high quality sun-grown cannabis.
  • Dr. Aimon Kopera, CEO, Geneomics Global
    Talk title
    : Cannabis and Beyond: The Modern Science Behind 200+ Ancient Plant-Medicine Formulations
    Biography: Dr. Kopera brings her three decades in ethnobotany, epigenetics, genomic medicine, functional medicine, and the healing power of plant-to-human consciousness into the next great transformation of re-emerging cannabinoid science and medicine to serve the people of her roots in Thailand and other countries.
  • Janie Maedler, President, Rylie’s Sunshine and VP, Rylie’s Smile Foundation
    : Pediatric Cannabis Parents
    Biography:Janie Maedler is a mom of three amazing children all with unique needs, Vice President of Rylie’s Smile Foundation, and President of Rylie’s Sunshine LLC. By her daughter Rylie’s side, Janie is dedicated to creating safe and affordable cannabis oils for kids living with debilitating illnesses.
  • Rylie Maedler, CEO, Rylie’s Sunshine & President, Rylie’s Smile Foundation
    Talk Title
    : A Better Path for Pediatric Patients
    Biography: Rylie Maedler, CEO of Rylie’s Sunshine and President of Rylie’s Smile Foundation 501c3. Rylie Maedler is heading the charge of her research and development company Rylie’s Sunshine – dedicated to creating safe and affordable cannabis oils for kids living with debilitating illnesses.
  • Heather Manus, RN, Founding Member, Cannabis Nurses Network
    Talk title
    : CA Senate Bill 311 “Ryan’s Law”:California First in the Nation to Protect Rights of Medical Cannabis Patients in Hospital
    PANEL: Nurses Network: A Revolution in Healthcare
    PANEL: A Nurses Role in Spirit Medicine: Nurturing the Psychedelic Renaissance
    Biography: Heather Manus, RN, is a native New Mexican and registered nurse specializing in all aspects of medical cannabis care. “Nurse Heather” began her career as a registered nurse providing psychiatric home health care to patients in New Mexico.
  • Gretchen Maurer, Physician, LVHN
    Talk title
    :Cannabinoids for Opiate Use Disorder – Cannabis as Harm Reduction Medicine (CHaRM)
    Biography: Gretchen E. Maurer, DO, MS, is a family medicine physician in Pennsylvania with clinical research interests including cannabinoids as therapy in pain management, evaluating opioid sparing, harm reduction in addiction medicine, and effects on secondary outcomes such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, and quality of life.
  • Scheril Murray Powell, Esq., Trade, Cannabis, Agriculture, and Dietary Supplement Attorney/Business Development Manager, Green Sustainable Strong LLC
    : International Cannabis: Trade and Supply Chain Considerations for a Global Cannabis Brand
    Biography: Scheril Murray Powell, Esq. is an agricultural, cannabis, and dietary supplement attorney at Doumar, Allsworth, Laystrom, Voigt, Adair, and Dishowitz LLP.She is a hemp farmer and the Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Sub-Committee of the ASTM D37 Committee.
  • Jenny Nelson, Application Scientist, Agilent
    Talk title
    : Official First Action AOAC Method: Metals in Cannabis
    Biography: Jenny Nelson received her PhD in analytical chemistry from the University of Cincinnati in 2007, and her MBA from Saint Mary’s College of California in 2011. Since 2012, Jenny has been an Application Scientist at Agilent Technologies. She is also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of V&E at UC Davis.
  • Dr. Heidi O’Neill, Health Scientist, Toxicologist, Cardno ChemRisk
    Talk title
    : Terpene Inhalation in Vaping Products: What Do We Know About Safety?
    Biography: Dr. Heidi O’Neill is a Supervising Health Scientist with more than 20 years of experience in multiple areas of toxicology and pharmacology including inhalation toxicology, dose-response modeling, neuropharmacology, and developmental toxicology. Her current work focuses on risk assessment of inhalation cannabis products.
  • Nique Pichette, MSN, RN, Speakers Bureau Member, Cannabis Nurses Network
    Nurses Network: A Revolution in Healthcare
    Biography: Nique Pichette MSN, RN is a two-time breast cancer survivor, veteran of the United States Marine Corps, Master Prepared in Nursing Leadership, Cannabis advocacy, and patient.
  • Jamie Rollins, BSN, RN, CYT-500, CNO, KetaMD
    : A Nurses Role in Spirit Medicine: Nurturing the Psychedelic Renaissance
    Biography: Jamie has worked in the home health, hospice, and psychiatric setting for the majority of her 17 years as a registered nurse.She is currently working as Chief Nursing Officer of KetaMD, developing the trailblazing role of Ketamine Nurse Guide. Her passion to end suffering is what fuels her passion to educate.
  • Tracy Ryan, Co-Founder/Chief Communications Officer, NKore Biotherapeutics
    : Saving Sophie: The Mom, the Scientist, and Their Journey to Cure Cancer
    Biography: Tracy Ryan is the co-founder of NKore Biotherapeutics, a cancer research, diagnostics, and therapeutics company. Ryan is also the founder of CannaKids. Her family is the featured family in the Ricki Lake produced Netflix documentary, Weed the People, that documented their daughter’s journey using cannabis to treat her pediatric brain tumor.
  • Kathleen Sanders, RPh, Pharmacist, High Winds Farm
    Talk title
    : Cannabis in Palliative Care
    Biography: Kathleen has been a pharmacist in Oregon for more than 25 years. Her career has been centered on retail patient care and therapy management. Kathleen also shares ownership in a large recreational cannabis production site and formerly owned a dispensary in Hood River, Oregon.
  • Stormy Simon, CEO and Co-Founder of Orlena Home North America, Board Member, Mission Green & Kaya Holding, Former President of Overstock and Former CEO of High Times
    Talk title
    : My Trip into Success
    Biography:Stormy Simon is an e-commerce pioneer and corporate leader. She formally served as the President of and CEO of High Times. Stormy recently launched the North American division of Orlena Home with collections Mother Ruggers and Simon Yildirim.
  • Dawn-Marie Steenstra, LPN, SDC, Clinical Director, Entourage Consulting Services
    : Expansion of the Clinical Directors Consortium
    Biography: Dawn-Marie Steenstra is a passionate patient advocate. She has worked in LTC, hospice, and community health for more than 30 years and has been an original cannabis nurse for over a decade. She advocates for clinical directors in all cannabis dispensaries for patient care and safety.
  • Kimberly Stuck, CEO, Allay Consulting, LLC
    Talk title
    : Cannabis Food Safety: How to Create Safe Cannabis Products and Mitigate Risk
    Biography: Kim Stuck is the founder and CEO of Allay Consulting, a compliance strategy and services provider serving the hemp, cannabis, and psychedelic industries nationwide. She brings a regulator’s keen eye and wide-reaching knowledge on evolving compliance and safety mandates to support businesses in tightly regulated industries.
  • Bernadette Torres
    : Sacred Tobacco the Guide for Psychedelic Plants
    Biography: Bernadette Torres has studied for 16 years with Sheripiari Ashéninka Mino, an Amazonian Tobacco healer.She learned from her parents who both come from small ranching communities in Northern New Mexico, where they taught her to honor the abundance of wild plants and their ancient wisdom for healing and nutrition. For more than 15 years, she has led plant ID walks in the wild and in people’s gardens. She has developed and taught herbal courses for university students, massage students, and at-risk youth.
  • Swathi Varanasi, Chief Scientific Officer, Element Apothec
    Talk title
    : The Endocannabinoid System, Emotional Dysregulation, and the Gut-Brain Axis
    Biography: She is a pharmacist specializing in integrative health and cannabis. She serves as a medical consultant for CBD and botanical companies, a natural medicines educator, and a clinical researcher. She studied at Carleton College (Northfield, MN) and received her PharmD from the Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston, SC).
  • Dr. Denise Vidot, Epidemiologist, University of Miami
    Talk title
    : Co-Use of Cannabis and Psilocybin to Manage Mental Health Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: Preliminary Results from the International COVID-19 Cannabis Health Study
    Biography: Dr. Denise C. Vidot is an epidemiologist at the University of Miami where she is Founder of the International Cannabis & Psychedelic Research Collaborative. Her research focuses on the biological, psychosocial, and societal implications of cannabis and psychedelic use on human health across the lifespan.
  • Becca Williams, Founder, Becca Williams International
    Talk title
    :The Advent of a New Paradigm: Cannabis and Psilocybin Microdosing as “Psychic Vitamins” to Release Trauma and Support Emotional Healing
    Biography: Becca is an Emotional Liberation® facilitator, registered dietitian and nutritionist, educator, and therapist who holds certificates from in Cannabis Core Curriculum, Dosage Protocols & Methodologies, CBD Essentials, and Clinical Application. She has worked as a group facilitator, speaker, and mentor for personal and collective transformation for more than two decades.


I’d like to personally thank these amazing ladies for their valuable contributions to our industry and society. We hope to see more companies and events doing their part to show their appreciation of the incredible female leaders within our community in the future. Be sure to join us and these amazing presenters May 18-20, 2022 in Long Beach, California, for the world’s largest and fastest-growing scientific and medical cannabis event, the 2022 Cannabis Science Conference West! To register and learn more, please visit


figure image
Share This Post