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Cannabis convention coming to Boston on Friday

The New England Cannabis Convention kicks off Friday in Boston, drawing an expected 10,000 attendees through Sunday. DON MACKINNON/AFP/Getty Images/File 2018/AFP/Getty Images

The New England Cannabis Convention kicks off Friday in Boston, drawing an expected 10,000 attendees through Sunday.

NECANN says it’s the largest and longest-running cannabis industry event on the East Coast since it started in 2015. It will take place at the Hynes Convention Center, with high-profile speakers and two panels presented by the Boston Globe.

Keynote speakers include attorney Dick Evans, a longtime leader of the Massachusetts legalization movement, and Niambe McIntosh a former Boston public school teacher who became a social justice advocate in 2017 after her brother was attacked while jailed on a marijuana possession charge.

There will be dozens of sessions, with tracks for business, medical marijuana, and cultivation. Session topics include navigating the local approvals process and state regulatory system, using cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies, cultivation tips, and finding the best treatments for various conditions. For example, Dr. Karen Munkacy, CEO of Garden Remedies dispensaries, will speak about how cancer patients can find relief using cannabis.

On Friday, the Globe is sponsoring a 4 p.m. panel, “Engineering equity: Harnessing Capitalism to Make Economic Justice Ideals a Reality,” which will discuss the roles of big businesses and local and state governments in making the industry more inclusive and diverse.


The panel will be moderated by cannabis reporter Naomi Martin and will include: Cannabis Control Commissioner Shaleen Title, who helped conceive the state’s social justice legal mandate; Keith Cooper, CEO of Revolutionary Clinics; Kim Napoli, an attorney with New England Treatment Access and Vicente Sederberg; and Kobie Evans, founder of Pure Oasis and the first economic empowerment applicant to receive approval to open a recreational marijuana store in Boston.

Globe cannabis reporter Dan Adams will speak on a panel called “Cannabis in the Media: Changing Attitudes, Access and Headlines in 2019” at 3 p.m. Saturday. The panel includes: Brit Smith, a WBZ news writer and host of the podcast Blunt Talk; cannabis advocate Jimmy Young, founder of; marketing professional Stu Zakim; Kristin Jordan, an attorney and founder of Mannada, a cannabis event production company; and David Tran, of Dope Media and High Times.


Entrance costs vary from $30 to $175 depending on workshop attendance. For more information, visit

Naomi Martin can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @NaomiMartin.