Ohio’s medical marijuana industry is growing, and it’s also growing in diversity. Ariane Kirkpatrick, a long-time Cleveland entrepreneur, is the owner of Harvest of Ohio. That makes Harvest of Ohio the state’s first medical marijuana dispensary led by a minority woman.
The Columbus location, the first of three, recently opened its doors after almost four years of preparation. Ohio granted Kirkpatrick a license in 2017, but opening a functional dispensary isn’t easy.
Kirkpatrick has had to face down more than just legal challenges in court—although those have come, too. Weeks after the dispensary opened, she and her team also faced racially charged vandalism, with the N word spray painted on the store.
But Kirkpatrick remains undefeated and excited about the future. With 56 medical dispensaries approved so far across Ohio, you can see what she’s optimistic about.
15 percent of approved licenses were owned by minorities during the initial rounds of applications, and four are black-owned today. Three of those are under Kirkpatrick’s leadership. Her other two locations in Beaver Creek and Athens will open soon, with the help of her family.