For the first time in the history of the cannabis industry in the Coachella Valley, a mainstream service organization, the local chapter of Rotary International in Desert Hot Springs, honored two local cannabis businesses for their contribution to the community.
Highroad Consulting earned a Big Heart Award as Large Business of the Year for helping build the Desert Hot Springs community. Local cannabis retail shop Green Pearl won Small Business of the Year, challenging negative propaganda promoted by the anti-cannabis lobby about the effect of cannabis on communities.
Highroad founder Greta Carter was at the awards dinner along with many of her team members, and had much to say about the honor of the award, the progress the community has made, and also how much farther there is to go toward true acceptance of legal cannabis.
“Tonight is bittersweet for me. It’s sweet because of the incredible people in this room who do so much for this community. Sweet because this award means this community accepts cannabis as normal in a way I honestly never thought I would live long enough to see,” she said.
But even though the event celebrated how cannabis businesses can integrate into communities, there were also reminders of prohibition.
“Tonight is also bitter, because even though this community and this international service organization, and others, accept donations of the money we make in cannabis, a gift basket of cannabis products we donated to the silent auction tonight was rejected,” Carter continued. “And although we know it was for an honorable reason — to protect the Rotary Club – it just means that even though we have come a long way, we have a long, long way to go.”
The intentional omission of cannabis products from the gala is a reminder that while many communities respect cannabis businesses and the entrepreneurs behind them, full acceptance of cannabis will take some time.
Greta and Highroad are both proud of this achievement and their ongoing support of the Desert Hot Springs chapter of Rotary International.
Highroad also extends congratulations to Green Pearl and the many other organizations honored at the 2019 Big Heart Awards.
The Highroad team accepts a Big Heart Award from the Desert Hot Springs chapter of Rotary International on March 28, 2019.