Throughout time, there have been individuals who were pioneering the cannabis revolution and society, such as George Washington or Bob Marley. Today, however, we are being introduced to the new godfathers of Ganja, those who are leading the revolution and changing the way people think of cannabis.
So who are the most notable people that are currently streamlining the once obscure cannabis culture into the everyday mainstream? Let’s get to know the Godfathers of Ganja.
Doctors for Dank
Dr. Raphael Mechoulam
Israeli scientist Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, (featured in the picture above), is nicknamed the Father of THC. He got this nickname due to the fact that back in 1964, he became the first person to isolate and synthesize THC. He has been conducting research into its use for medical purposes ever since. He is one of a few doctors who has been granted funding from the U.S. National Institutes of Health to support his research into cannabinoids.
Dr. Mechoulam did not stop at THC, but he and his team proceeded to isolate most cannabinoids.
On the top of that, they also discovered anandamide endogenous cannabinoid (or endocannabinoid)—the natural version of THC, produced by the brain.
The popular documentary called “The Scientist” is dedicated to Dr. Mechoulam’s incredible life and contribution to medical marijuana around the world.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta
The world renowned American neurosurgeon and medical media reporter Dr. Sanjay Gupta, has been an activist for medicinal cannabis, primarily using his CNN medical correspondent position to highlight the benefits of medicinal cannabis using documentary pieces such as Charlotte’s Web and WEED. Dr. Gupta has been on the front lines of what he calls a “medical revolution” since 2013, despite having been anti-cannabis in 2009.
Gupta is known for shining the truth on widely accepted misinformation stating, “Medical marijuana is not new, and the medical community has been writing about it for a long time. There were, in fact, hundreds of journal articles, mostly documenting the benefits. Most of those papers, however, were written between the years 1840 and 1930. The papers described the use of medical marijuana to treat ‘neuralgia, convulsive disorders, emaciation,’ among other things.”
Dr. Michelle Ross
American Neuroscientist Michele Ross is among the biggest voices in the fight for medical cannabis. Using the platform of reality tv show “Big Brother” in 2009, Dr. Ross took advantage of the publicity to bring attention to medical cannabis. Dr. Ross has a notable book titled “Vitamin Weed: a 4-Step Plan to Prevent and Reverse Endocannabinoid Deficiency” which is an in-depth look into boosting your immunity using your endocannabinoid system.
Dr. Ross specializes in addiction, mental health, and psychopharmacology for over 10 years and is allied with such organizations as International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS) and the Colorado Cannabis Clinicians.
Dr. Andrew Katelaris
Australian doctor Andrew Katelaris is an avid believer in the benefits of cannabis as medicine so much, in fact, he risked his registration in 2005 after his refusal to stop recommending and prescribing cannabis as a form of treatment. Despite his deregistration, Dr. Katelaris who was arrested a number of times in his fight for medical cannabis has vowed to continue producing and supplying Australians with medicinal CBD oil dubbing him the nickname, Dr. Pot.
Dr. Geoffrey Guy
Dr. Geoffrey Guy is a British entrepreneur known for his founding of GW Pharmaceuticals in 1998, which created the first cannabis medication Sativex for treating symptoms of MS. In 2015, GW Pharmaceuticals introduced another cannabis-based medicine named Epidiolex which is aimed at treating illnesses in children such as epilepsy even as early as newborns.
Activists & Entrepreneurs
Jodie & Marc Emery
Canadian activists and politicians Marc and Jodie Emery, are Canada’s leading cannabis activists. They tour around the world speaking at cannabis events. Marc Emery gained worldwide recognition in 2009 when he was sentenced to 5 years in prison for selling cannabis seeds into the U.S.A. via mail order.
The Emerys also own a bunch of cannabis-related business such as Hemp BC which was founded in 1994 the same year Marc Emery fought the government allowing Canada to sell High Times Magazine as well as cannabis grow books. Marc Emery is known as ‘The Prince of Pot’ and even has an in-depth documentary titled the same that was released in 2010.
The Australian-born entrepreneur is known for creating the world’s first cannabis seed bank in 1984 and kept it until 1991 when he sold it to Sensi Seeds. Schoenmakers then went on to fund the Greenhouse Seed Company with Arjan Roskam. In the most recent years, Schoenmakers has been focusing his energy on the cannabis legalization of Australia.
Co-founder of the Greenhouse Seed Company and Greenhouse Coffee shops, Arjan Roskam has starred in numerous documentaries and has been given the nickname “King of Cannabis” for his cannabis strains winning 40 cannabis cups as well as a dozen other awards worldwide since 1993.
Michael Straumietis is an expert cannabis grower who has gained notability for his line of cannabis-specific garden product called Advanced Nutrients which ranges from pH balancers to growth accelerators. Straumietis is helping bring cannabis to the mainstream through a new Discovery Channel Show titled ‘Grow Med University’.
A host of the daytime talk show The View, Whoopi Goldberg has used her platform of celebrity to bring light the benefits and importance of cannabis legalization. Goldberg primarily is passionate on pediatric medical marijuana which is the use of cannabinoids to treat ailments in young children.
Comedy actor Tommy Chong is often referred to as the “Godfather of Pot” after his many cannabis loving roles from the Cheech & Chong series to Leo from that 70s show. Chong has made headlines over the years for famously being arrested for selling bongs online and forgetting to use the tagline, ‘for tobacco use only’. Now Chong has made a legitimate name for himself in the cannabis industry through his signature strain Chong Star sold exclusively by Marisol Therapeutics.
Aside from being a lyrical god, Snoop is also the godfather of ganja with his line of signature vapes titled G Pens as well as being a primary investor in the company Eaze, a medical marijuana delivery service. Snoop’s cannabis business surely added depth to the long time stoner who is even famous for hot-boxing the White House bathroom.
While being a television personality, actor and comedian Joe Rogan openly supports cannabis legislation for years. He hosted a cannabis documentary titled The Union: The Business Behind Getting High and can be seen other documentary films such as Marijuana: A Chronic History and The Culture High. Rogan is also known for slamming cannabis misinformation on social media while even challenge other celebrities such as Nancy Grace who uses pseudo-science to push her anti-cannabis beliefs.
Leading lady Susan Sarandon may be known to the masses as an award-winning actress but to fellow celebs she is the Queen of Cannabis smoking more than Matthew McConaughey and Mark Wahlberg. Sarandon has not shied away from these accusations but instead embraced them by even admitting that she gets high before any award show. Susan Sarandon currently serves as a member of the Marijuana Policy Project advisory board.
While most people know Bill Maher for his television show Real Time with Bill Maher and known for fighting his right to use cannabis during his program, most people are unaware of the fact Mr. Maher is a political activist in the fight for cannabis legalization. Bill Maher actually serves as a member of the Marijuana Policy Project advisory board.
Tip of the Iceberg
While these notable people are definitely on the front lines in the fight for cannabis legalization they only make up a fraction of those fighting worldwide to make cannabis a medicine easily accessible to anyone.