Potential Structures to Create Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry


Some have estimated the US cannabis market will reach $44 billion in legal sales by 2025. However, this economic opportunity is not equitably enjoyed, as it is also estimated that 81% of cannabis business owners are white. This session will cover state efforts towards improving access to retail and agricultural business opportunities for racially diverse entrepreneurs, as well as perspectives on additional approaches to be considered at the state, federal, and local levels.



  • Shawn “Pepper” Roussel, Attorney at Law, Green Pepper Solutions
  • Cedric Sinclair, Chief Communications Officer, Cannabis Control Commission, Commonwealth of Massachusetts
  • Mathew R. Swinburne, Associate Director, Network for Public Health Law – Eastern Region, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law (sub)
  • Benjamin C. Varadi, Senior Fellow & Visiting Research Scholar, Vermont Law School Center for Agriculture & Food Systems