News and notes relevant to commercial cannabis industry practitioners in Illinois and beyond.

The hypnotic horticultural powers of Colorado’s Jared Polis

Before getting into Colorado politics as a Boulder congressman and then Governor, Jared Polis was a successful serial entrepreneur and investor who backed a number of Illinois-based startups (including one founded by this reporter). 

The guy who made hundreds of millions of dollars showcasing digital Blue Mountain Arts greeting cards more than 20 years ago this week shared his thoughts on cannabis, mushrooms and statehouse to statehouse hypnosis via a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” online question and answer session.  

The Governor, who includes pioneering dispensary owner Wanda James as a close political advisor,quipped to a questioner that he will use some sort of THC-like telepathy to convince Ohio governor Mike DeWine to allow residents of the aviation state to get as high as they would like through adult-use legalization. 

“At the next National Governors Assoc meeting I will hypnotize him and plant the suggestion deep in his psyche,” he wrote. 

I’ll have what you’re having, Gov. 

Cresco’s Bachtell to chair National Cannabis Roundtable

Politico’s Shia Kapos reports that Charlie Bachtell, co-founder and CEO of Chicago-based Cresco Labs, will become chair of the National Cannabis Roundtable.

He will succeed former U.S. House Speaker John Boehner in that post. Boehner is a board director of New York and Canada-based Acreage Holdings, which operates the Nature’s Care Dispensaries in Rolling Meadows and across North America. 

Ascend Wellness chief eyes independent dispensaries in Illinois

In a long-form interview with New Cannabis Ventures, Ascend Wellness Holdings CEO Abner Kurtin said the company is in the market to acquire independent dispensaries in the Land of Lincoln. 

“In Illinois, some of the larger players in the market, such as PharmaCann, GTI and Cresco Labs, are near or at their cap of 10 retail stores,” according to Kurtin. “This gives AWH the opportunity to explore opportunities in that market to build a network with independent operators.”

Boston-based Ascend currently has four dispensaries in Illinois. 

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Brad Spirrison is a journalist, serial entrepreneur and media ecologist. He lives in Chicago with his son. Interests include music, meditation and Miles Davis.