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Dr. Chanda Macias: A Woman of Great Influence

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Name: Dr. Chanda Macias

Degrees: Bachelor’s degree (Biology)–Howard University; MBA (Supply Chain Management)—Rutger’s University; PhD (Cellular Biology)—Howard University

Special Accomplishments/Fun Facts:

  • ‘96-’97 Recipient of the Ronald E. McNair Scholarship
  • Became the first African American woman to receive a medical marijuana license
  • Awarded title of “2020 Queen Zulu” at New Orleans’ February Mardi Gras celebration
  • Named one of Forbes’ “Fifteen Powerful and Innovative Women in Cannabis Right Now”
  • Named one of the “Top 15 Women to Watch in CBD” by Marie Claire


Dr. Chanda Macias undoubtedly gives an entirely new meaning to beauty and brains. Beyond her warm brown eyes and infectious smile is over 15 years of empowering and educating both women and people of color in the cannabis industry. She has been coined “one of the most influential women in cannabis and hemp,” and has the credentials to back it all up. Dr. Chanda has dedicated her life and talents through her work as a biomedical researcher, entrepreneur and mentor to thousands. All while balancing motherhood and marriage, and caring for patients who need her inspiration and guidance all the same.


She is the CEO and Chairwoman of the Board of Women Grow since its 2014 conception, and also serves as the Vice-Chair of the National Cannabis Roundtable Board. In addition, Dr. Chanda sits proudly on the Board of Directors for the Minority Cannabis Business Association, is Treasurer and Secretary of D.C. Medical Cannabis Trade Association, and is a member of Americans for Safe Access. Through these organizations, Dr. Chanda promotes and supports common sense federal legislation, tax equity, and financial services reform.


According to her official website, Dr. Chanda investigated oral care solutions and treatment options at Colgate-Palmolive Company and was the STEM Director at Howard University. Her hard work and relentless dedication enabled her to receive several federally funded grants, including the NIH-Minority Health International Research Training Grant. Through this grant, she was afforded the opportunity to train MDs, PhDs, and advanced undergraduate students in Africa, on infectious diseases, while addressing health disparities.


In 2015, Dr. Chanda founded the National Holistic Healing Center (NHHC) in Washington, D.C. It has become the leading medical cannabis dispensary in the state, and under her leadership, has demonstrated substantial patient retention and consistent enrollment in her education platform. What makes the NHHC so special is that patients with a marijuana card from any state can be served.


To date, Dr. Chanda’s research and innovations has resulted in several U.S. and global patents, and has been featured in many esteemed publications and compilations. She has also “created net value, built a competitive infrastructure, leveraged logistics, synchronized supply with demand, and measured performance in the industry,” as outlined in her official biography.


It is no surprise why Dr. Chanda is so celebrated and important to the minority community, the women’s community, and the hemp industry, as a whole. Her work is sure to continue to transcend generations and barriers. To learn more about this woman of great influence, be sure to follow her official (and active!) Instagram account @drchandaqueenzulu2020, her Facebook account @drchandaqueen, or visit her website

-Olivia Shaw-Reel