Women like Ariane Kirkpatrick, founder of Harvest of Ohio cannabis dispensary, are breaking down barriers in the growing market. Kirkpatrick holds three licenses in the cannabis industry — licenses to cultivate, dispense, and sell — giving her rank as the only Black woman to be “vertically integrated” in Ohio.
The ambitious mother founded Harvest of Ohio to help others improve their quality of life through cannabis. After speaking with her son, who used the plant to cope with anxiety, she felt they could help others reap the same benefits.
“I knew it was going to be a challenge for me because I knew people would try to test me,” Kirkpatrick told Afrotech. “So, I wasn’t shocked with some of the behavior I faced, and continue to face, amongst others in cannabis.”
“While my journey has been hard, it’s been a journey that I’ve just had to make happen, and it almost seems normal to me,” she said. “I’ve been fighting all of my life, and it’s what my mother taught my sister and me to do…At an early age, we were picketing in support of Black businesses. We were boycotting McDonald’s because they didn’t have a Black franchise. So, I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to do.”
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