Company: Panacea Valley Gardens
Position: Founder and Co-owner
Location: Portland, Oregon
Jesce Horton says he owes a lot to cannabis, so the 34-year-old co-owner of Panacea Valley Gardens is taking steps to give back as the president and founder of the Minority Cannabis Business Association.
Horton credits much of his professional and academic career to cannabis, saying the plant helped him become a “great math student,” ultimately leading him to a degree in engineering from Florida State University.
While in college, he also learned more about the criminal justice side of cannabis and the racial disparity marijuana-related arrests nationwide. Seeing this impact firsthand, particularly in the South, where he was raised, had a profound impact on Horton.
“I saw that and all of it was really close to me from living in the South,” he says. “So, it was important to me to figure out a way to give back to the industry and luckily I was able to meet some amazing people to build this small organization.”
Horton says the goal of the Minority Cannabis Business Association is to “ensure that the people who have been targeted the most by the War on Drugs and by cannabis prohibition have the opportunity to benefit from the industry.”
Horton has made an impressive career in cannabis thus far, having helped start Panacea Valley Gardens, an award-winning medical operation in Portland, Oregon in 2012. Horton says he is now ready to sell his shares in the company so he can move on to his new venture, Saints Cloud, a grandiose plan to house a grow operation, extraction lab, commercial kitchen and more on one tourist-friendly property.
“Saints is essentially where we would have all of the licenses on one property with a lounge and a bed and breakfast,” he says. “We want to do a lot of different things on this property that we were able to acquire. We are going through some permitting and construction right now.”