Excess merit. In 2014, Priscilla Vilchis became the youngest person and the first Latina to obtain a license to grow marijuana in Nevada. Moreover, just three years later, she added a new distinction: by 2017 she also became the first Latina and first woman to receive cannabis licenses in California.
So, who is Priscilla Vilchis and why was she baptized as the “Hollyweed Queen”?
"I risked millions of dollars to be able to invest in this industry and many people called me 'crazy,'" said the young businesswoman responsible for Premium Produce, a company dedicated to the cultivation and production of cannabis on a large scale.
We're probably talking about an initial investment of about $2 million. But the figure may even be even higher.
At age 27, Vilchis began investing in cannabis, and immediately founded Premium Produce, which started as a small Nevada-based company and now manages a 25,000-square-foot (8-kilometer) farm.
"We have grown," Priscilla confessed in a conversation with Latinx media outlet El Planteo.
To take her first steps, Vilchis put together a team of lawyers and coordinated a group of specialists to work on obtaining her license. “I was awarded almost immediately thanks to a very strong application, capital, and extensive background checks,” she expressed.
Hollyweed Queen: The Marijuana Queen
Baptized by the press as the “Hollyweed Queen” or “Queen of the Desert,” her nickname refers, on the one hand, to her line of cannabis “Queen” and, on the other, to her entrepreneurial and enthusiastic spirit.
And what is a “Queen”? A line of products that includes CBD-based cigarettes, vaporizers, capsules, and creams.
“My main goal in entering the cannabis community was to intervene in the opioid epidemic that I was seeing in the healthcare space. I managed doctors in the health industry for many years and I saw firsthand that they had a serious problem there: patients were becoming addicted and I wanted to make a change”, Priscilla affirmed.
And she continued: “My wish is to get cannabis products reimbursed by health insurance one day and also to help stop the war on drugs that are killing people every day. I would love to help break the stigma that cannabis is a gateway drug: cannabis is medicine.”
A World of Opportunities
Trained in business administration, Priscilla chose not to finish her bachelor's degree, discontinue her old training, and devote herself fully to medicine. She first as a medical consultant and, later, after noticing the pain of many of her patients, to the cannabis industry.
“I wanted to pursue an opportunity in the health industry. I couldn't let it go. And, thank God, I didn't. Otherwise, I wouldn't be where I am today. Either way, I promised my mom that I would find time to go back and finish school one day,” she said.
In her work as a medical consultant, she coordinated the work of doctors in Southern California. "I earned their trust by making them more money through marketing," she revealed.
Being a woman in the cannabis industry
Meanwhile, her impetus in a competitive industry made her one of the most prominent women in business in the United States. “I would love to see more women in the world of cannabis. I think it's important for other strong-willed women to come together and make a lot of noise in this male-dominated industry,” she said.
“There are not many of us and that is something I would definitely love to see.”
Among her next projects, Vilchis has already prepared new operations in California, which will be completed in the next two months.
She is also collaborating with Tysons, GKUA (rapper Lil Wayne's brand), and El Blunto, among other firms. "All of them, well-known brands, wanted 'La Reina' to provide them with flowers for their products," she concluded.
Image by El Planteo
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