If you don’t already know the name Kika Keith, you will. The 50-year-old entrepreneur and social equity activist is the owner and founder of LA’s first Black woman-owned dispensary. In August of this year, after a five-year-long battle that included a successful lawsuit against the city, a successful boycott of a multi-million dollar franchise dispensary, and triumph over countless other obstacles, Keith opened Gorilla RX Wellness in the Crenshaw District.
Kika Keith and Community Empowerment In The Crenshaw District
Since day one, community empowerment has been a priority for Keith. In 2017, when the City of Los Angeles created a program designed to make cannabis business ownership more accessible to low-income people, Keith heeded the call from Black politicians urging community members to get involved. She committed herself to learning as much as she could about the cannabis industry so she could apply for one of the limited number of cannabis licenses available through the program. But Keith was never just in it for herself. She took everything she learned about the city’s cannabis compliance and regulations and everything she heard at advisory committee meetings at the state capitol and brought it back home to share with those in her community who were also interested in getting involved. Together, she and several community members formed an organization dedicated to helping people prepare and apply for their licenses.
Gorilla RX Wellness In Los Angeles, CA Opens To The Public
5 years later, now that Keith has overcome the major hurdles of getting Gorilla RX Wellness opened to the public, she is doing everything she can to ensure that the money generated stays within the community. In addition to carrying a wide range of cannabis products from Black-owned businesses, she has hired 20 employees from the Crenshaw District and has committed to donating a portion of the revenue to nonprofits that support the local community.
A Socially Conscious Cannabis Dispensary
Socially conscious cannabis dispensaries like Gorilla RX Wellness help confirm that the benefits of cannabis go far beyond a blissed-out high (although there is that too). It has the potential to soothe the body, the mind, the soul, and the community. We at Off The Charts are proud to welcome Gorilla RX Wellness to the industry.