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HIGHLY INSPIRED

RADICAL SELF CARE: EP. 6 - KEVIN FORD JR.

RADICAL SELF CARE: EP. 6 - KEVIN FORD JR.

In Conversation with Kevin Ford Jr.
AFROPUNK partnership

EVERY THURSDAY AT 8PM ET, HEAD OVER TO THE AFROPUNK IG LIVE CHANNEL FOR THESE WEEKLY CONVERSATIONS CURATED BY HUMBLE BLOOM'S SOLONJE BURNETT WITH THOUGHT LEADERS AND ENTREPRENEURS IN MUSIC, AGRICULTURE, BEAUTY, MINDFULNESS, NUTRITION, SUSTAINABILITY, SEXUAL EMPOWERMENT AND MORE.

 

Kevin is a native of Prince George's County (MD). He graduated with a B.A. in Business Administration from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. Upon graduation, Kevin returned home and earned his real estate license in Maryland and D.C. before working with KW Commercial. Kevin then worked for the Prince George's County Government with the Revenue Authority and Office of Central Services.

After parting with PGC Government, Kevin began working at Mary & Mary Medical Cannabis Dispensary. Being a medical patient himself, he saw a void in the market for a clear source of information. After consulting industry leaders, Kevin started Uplift Maryland as a one-stop shop for navigating the state's medical cannabis program. Kevin is also an advocate for diversity and inclusion in the cannabis industry. He believes that an open market is the key to cracking the code to social social justice.

What's your current theme song? If you have a reason, please share.
The Deli - Flowers; Life is challenging but it's great. Just a reminder to smell the flowers every morning in thanksgiving.

What are you working on in the cannabis space?
At Uplift Maryland, we strive to increase diversity and inclusion within the emerging medical cannabis industry, ensuring our community has an opportunity to participate in the economy of the future. Uplift Maryland is a one-stop shop for navigating all aspects of Maryland cannabis.

Tell me about your journey to now. What impactful moments led you to your work?
My journey with cannabis started as a patient. I have diagnosed classic migraines and found early in my cannabis journey how much it worked for my symptoms. That interest grew to passion. Coupled with my experience with the Prince George's County (Maryland) government working in the Procurement and Supplier Diversity & Development divisions, I was able to start Uplift and win a grant and contract from the State of Maryland to educate and train interested minority cannapreneurs, as well as dispensary agent training.

Who and/or what motivates your passion each day?
My family motivates me every day to continue to strive. Growing up in a household with two doctors as parents, I have always been pushed to be the best I can be while still helping others around me get better.

How do you define Radical Self Care?
For me, cannabis was my radical self care. My parents, for years, hated that I consumed cannabis. Waking up early just to center my chi was everything I needed to take the necessary steps that put be here today.

What rituals do you have to help maintain homeostasis of mind, body, and spirit?
My morning routine:
1. Wake Up
2. Thank God
3. Drink Water
4. Read the quote and bible verse of the day
5. Roll Up and Spark for a strategy session
6. Drink more water!!
6. Show my family love when they wake up

How do you incorporate plants into your well being routine? How is the cannabis (THC, CBD, CBN, etc) a part of your plant ritual?
Since 14 I've been incorporating cannabinoids into my wellbeing through direct, Since quarantine started, I've been able to hone in on my smoking schedule for maximum efficiency. Every 3 hours starting at 6am. Typically I mix high THC with high CBD first at 6am. This puts me in a mode of thought. After that, it's all on how I feel.

Who would you like to experience an altered state (dream elevation + discussion) with and how would you achieve this flow state?
I'd really love for Donald Trump to experience and altered state with me so I can let him know what's really good. He's needs to be talked to lol.

Love the phrase "slow down to speed up", what does that mean to you personally and within the present global pause?
I think this could speak to mental health. In this current environment, anxiety runs high. This is why we've seen such a spike in sales throughout the country over this period. Anxiety can have you moving a million miles a minute but cannabis will have you moving a net speed.

What is the gift you bring to community?
Comradeship and collaboration. Together, we all achieve more. I want to be the person that sparks a true sense of community through cannabis.

What has been the most challenging for you during this time?
This time has honestly been the opposite of challenging. Work is steady and has given me the much needed time and space to think.

What made you become an advocate in the space and for the plant?
2010: I entered the cannabis industry as a marketing consultant for a cannabis culture clothing company. Between then and 2018 when I started my company, there was a life changing event that led me to the belief that cannabis is my true calling.