My Portfolio

My first ever byline was about the night I was sexually abused by an ex-boyfriend. Reactions included, "A raw and vulnerable account of an act of brutality" and "If this what we can expect from your writing, you definitely have to continue writing!" Although the essay went viral, unfortunately the publication folded just a year later.

Since then, I have been chasing that "high" with every piece I write. Below are the topics I love writing about the most. Click on the topic to find samples or scroll the list below.

Where My Bylines Have Appeared


Cannabis

Tech Side of the Industry

Color Remediation Column BHO Extraction
Butane Hash Oil (BHO) extraction techniques have been widely used by cannabis manufacturers seeking to produce high-quality concentrates. Read more...

Women Making Waves on the tech side of the Cannabis Industry
Forbes Magazine concurs, while women earn 57 percent of undergraduate degrees [in the United States], only 18 percent of them are in technical fields. Read more...

Technology Easing Security Concerns in Cannabis
Whether they are growing, processing, manufacturing, distributing, or selling, businesses handling cannabis, and the cash exchanged for it, are highly vulnerable to theft. Read more...

Scaling Up: Commercial Hemp Oil Extraction Machines
The demand for CBD products is booming. Read more...

Toxic Contaminants in Cannabis Extracts: What are the Dangers?
Chemical substances are sometimes added to cannabis extracts used in vaporizers. Read more...

CBD Marketplace Plagued by Labeling Inaccuracies, Still
The market for cannabidiol (CBD) products is growing, driven by the public’s insatiable demand for anything that includes the letters ‘CBD’ on its label. Read more...

New Federal Initiative Promises Better Quality Control in Cannabis Testing
Most legitimate cannabis and hemp companies form relationships with third-party testing laboratories. Read more...

Hash Making Process and Equipment
Hash is produced when the trichomes (resin glands) of the cannabis plant are separated and concentrated, with little or no contamination that can reduce potency and quality. Read more...

The Science Behind the Entourage Effect
Thanks to their efficacy and popularity, THC and CBD have become well-known acronyms among medical professionals and patients alike. Read more...

Advantages in Vertical Integration
Vertical integration in cannabis unites cultivators, extractors, manufacturers, and retailers under one umbrella. Read more...

Identifying and Removing Fungal Pathogens in Cannabis
Government regulatory agencies in most countries have strict guidelines about levels of allowable fungi contamination. Read more...

Online Ordering Platforms Find Renewed Purpose During Pandemic
Online ordering platforms are now the retail destinations of choice for individuals who can legally purchase cannabis supplies, whether for medical or recreational uses. Read more...

Furloughs, Layoffs, and Losses: Covid-19 Takes a Hit on Cannabis
The Covid-19 outbreak and associated quarantine have caused problems for every industry, and cannabis is no exception. Read more...

Wraparound Dehumidification Technology for Cannabis Grows
In these conditions, sensitive cannabis plants become vulnerable to mold, powdery mildew, and bud rot (Botrytis). Read more...

New Cannabinoid Discovery: THCP
Research into the properties of cannabis is ongoing, and new discoveries are the order of the day. Read more...

Cannabis Analysis and Advanced Lab Equipment
Robust consumer demand has put the cannabis industry on the fast track to sustainable profitability. Read more...

Cannabis Companies Targeting Hemp Market
Cannabis companies know a good opportunity when they see it, and many see a potential gold mine in hemp. Read more...

Ozone Technology Provides Clean Cannabis Solution
Quality is everything in cannabis cultivation and sales, especially regarding the safety and cleanliness of products on the shelf. Read more...

Solaris Farms Tackles Desert Heat with Global Tech
Obviously, desert cultivation of cannabis provides some unique challenges. Read more...

Top 5 Uses for Drone Technology in Hemp Cultivation
As a cannabis consumer, you may see hemp as only being an alternate source of CBD—in particular, if you live in a prohibition state. Read more...

How Tech is Driving the Cannabis Industry
The introduction of legalized cannabis to the American economy happened quickly, and everyone involved has had to overcome numerous challenges to make it work. Read more...

Evolution of Seed to Sale Technology in Cannabis
BioTrackTHC has been a pioneer in the field of cannabis industry software. Read more...

How is CBD Extracted from the Hemp Plant?
By now, you've not only heard about the powers of CBD, you've experienced them for yourself. Read more...

Researching CBD – Looking for Limits
Cannabidiol (CBD) has been highly touted and heavily hyped. Read more...

Policy

Writing Legislative Wrongs
On February 7, 2022, New Jersey publication, The Patch, ran a story with the headline: “NJ
Hasn’t Licensed Any Black Owners Since It Legalized Marijuana. Read more...

These 4 Women Are Addressing Social Equity In The Cannabis Industry Now
The number of ancillary businesses in the cannabis industry in the United States is unknown because new ventures form daily. Read more...

Colorado to Consider Flavour Ban to Reduce e-Cig Consumption
Lawmakers in Colorado will soon be considering a new bill that would ban the sale of all flavoured tobacco products. Read more...

US Lawsuits End DEA Restrictions On Sources of Cannabis for Researchers
Lawsuits in the US have overturned the requirement that researchers interested in studying cannabis can only purchase from a single licensed source. Read more...

Republican Bill Could Create Ingestible CBD Pathway, but Passage Remains Iffy
Nancy Mace, a first-term Republican Congresswoman from South Carolina, recently introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would decriminalize cannabis at the federal level. Read more...

40 Grams and a Bong?
In 2021, recreational marijuana officially became legal in New York. Read more...

Selling Pot is Still Not Easy
March 31, 2021, was a historic day for New Yorkers, when Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation to legalize adult-use cannabis. Read more...

Bipartisan Coalition Pushing For Federal Cannabis Reform
What has been speculated on for weeks in the nation’s capital has now become a reality. Read more...

A Greener Green: Solar Power The Best Option For Cannabis Sustainability
Most cannabis producers would consider themselves ecologically responsible. Read more...

Hemp Hemp Hooray: Legalization Of Super Plant To Revitalize Puerto Rican Agriculture
Ever since the last sugar cane processing plant closed in 2000, Puerto Rico's agricultural industry has struggled mightily. Read more...

The Truth About INSYS Therapeutics And Big Pharma’s Battle To Take Down Legal Cannabis
The 2016 US presidential election cycle was a productive one for pro-cannabis activists. Read more...

The New Prohibition Battle: True Cannabis Legalization Is A Constitutional Matter
Federal law prohibits the cultivation, sale and consumption of cannabis products within the borders of the United States. Read more...

The Truth About Veterans and Medical Marijuana
Every year on November 11, in celebrations both large and small, the nation comes together to thank veterans of all wars the United States has participated in. Read more...

New Congressional Legislation Would Lift Restrictions on Important Cannabis Research
In a move that should expand scientific research efforts into the medical benefits of cannabis, on September 9th, the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee sent new marijuana-related legislation to the House floor... Read more...

Plant Medicine

Calling All Women: How Cannabis Can Help With Menopause And Low Sex Drive
When I got my period at age 11, my mother was caught completely off guard. Read more...

Cannabis And Cancer: Coincidence, Or A Viable Treatment Option?
Few things strike fear in people the way a cancer diagnosis can. Read more...

The Face of Cannabis: Treating a Disfiguring Bone Disease
For a parent, few things are scarier than when their child is diagnosed with a serious illness: the fear, the anxiety, questions that begin with “what if” and “why us?”  Read more...

What is a Trichome?
Cannabis and hemp plants are fertile producers of a dazzling array of chemical compounds, many of which have therapeutic effects in the human body. Read more...

Which Type of CBD Oil is the Best? A Closer Examination of the Choices
CBD (cannabidiol) oil continues growing in popularity during 2020, especially in light of health concerns as the nation struggles with lockdown and a pandemic, and consumers choose to look more toward health-conscious choices and products. Read more...

THC Eyedrops in Clinical Trials for Glaucoma Patients
Dr. Mahmoud ElSohly, one of the co-directors of the Marijuana Project at the University of Mississippi (UM), is leading a noteworthy clinical study to evaluate and develop THC eye drops. Read more...

How Essential Oils Enhance Marijuana's Entourage Effect
We often hear cannabis consumers talking about the entourage effect, but in truth many consumers don't know what it means. Read more...

Can Cannabis Cure Glioblastomas and Other Forms of Cancer?
In April 2017, Keischa N. Quiles Mercado of Arecibo, Puerto Rico, was 27 and had just started her master’s program in psychotherapy, when one morning she was awoken by a series of grand mal seizures. Read more...

The Older, More Mature Cannabis Consumer
The "average" cannabis consumer is often characterized as someone younger than 30, but new research shows that might not be the case. Read more...

Medicinal Cannabis: Side Effects May Include Relief From Additional Ailments
Within months of my 18th birthday, two things happened that continue to impact my life 34 years later. Read more...

Why I Did a Complete 180 About Medical Marijuana
If you knew me when I was growing up, you'd know why it's pretty surprising how I feel about marijuana. Read more...

CBD And Depression: Unlocking Further Benefits Of Cannabidiol
As researchers gain a better understanding of the utility and versatility of cannabidiol (CBD) and it’s increasingly accepted by the general public, the role of this cannabinoid in treating depression has become a significant topic of interest both inside and outside the cannabis community. Read more...

Geopolitics

Northern Mariana Islands Moving Forward With Full Cannabis Legalization
On Sept. 21, 2018, Governor Ralph DLG Torres of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) signed House Bill 20-178 into law. Read more...

Progress Made, Progress Still To Come: Uruguay’s Historic Cannabis Legalization, Five Years Later
Uruguay became the first country in the world to legalize recreational cannabis in 2013. Read more...

Mexican Supreme Court Declares Cannabis Prohibition Unconstitutional
The full legalization of cannabis in Mexico moved one step closer to reality on October 31, when the National Supreme Court of Justice, the highest court in the land, issued a ruling declaring the country’s existing ban on recreational cannabis unconstitutional. Read more...

Pakistan to Legalize Hemp Cultivation and Production
Despite starting its hemp industry nearly from scratch, Pakistan still expects to reap significant economic rewards in short order. Read more...

Sponsored Pieces

Staying Compliant—and Profitable—with Fyllo
Cannabis is regulated more tightly than most businesses. Read more...

Building Confidence in the Cannabis Marketplace
To grease the wheels of progress, a Palo Alto, California, company called Confident Cannabis is revolutionizing the way the cannabis industry functions. Read more...

Why Leaflit Wants to Change How You Grow Cannabis At Home
Marist College Institute for Public Opinion conducted a poll about Weed and the American Family revealing some interesting statistics. Read more...

Cultivation

How Puerto Rico's Hurricane Maria Changed The Way We Grow Cannabis
In 2007, my husband Raul* and I decided to leave our corporate jobs behind and buy an organic farm. Read more...


Psilocybin

Can Psychedelics Reverse Neurological Damage Associated with Mental Health Conditions?
Two recent studies from Denmark and Spain have found evidence suggesting that psychedelics may cause lasting and positive changes in the brain, specifically in the prefrontal cortex and the hippocampus. Read more...

Scientists Unlock Neurological Code of Dissociation
One sentence excScientists are unlocking the neurological code of dissociation, a form of altered consciousness that is frequently associated with psychedelic drug use. Read more...


STEM

Puerto Rico and STEM: Where Politics and Culture Collide
While STEM education and funding in Puerto Rico is on the rise and shows promise as an engine to create well-paying jobs of the future, a long history of unfortunate political decisions and ongoing unfair treatment of the island’s people puts its future there at risk. Read more...

Chilean GeneproDX is ready to go global with its patented ThyroidPrint®
Chilean biotech GeneproDX can substantially increase the prediction accuracy of detecting thyroid cancer and dramatically reduce the need for surgery which is currently used to confirm cancer diagnosis in indeterminate nodules. Read more...


Travel

Adventurous Things to Do in Puerto Rico
Ask anyone who’s been to Puerto Rico about their vacation and most will say they walked the streets of Old San Juan learning the history of the island. Read more...

Nightlife in Puerto Rico
For a capital city, San Juan is rather small—but it's densely populated with people and things to do both day and night. Read more...

Your Trip To Puerto Rico: The Complete Guide
Puerto Rico is a crown jewel of the Caribbean, a tropical island with great weather year-round and a wide assortment of fantastic attractions. Read more...

The Top 10 Museums in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico has a rich, storied history and a diverse culture. Read more...

Weather in Puerto Rico: Climate, Seasons, and Average Monthly Temperature
Puerto Rico’s hospitable climate is hot, usually humid, and summerlike all year long. Read more...


Puerto Rico

An Economy in Ruins? No, an Economy that was Ruined, and Purposely
Through no fault of their own, the Puerto Rican people have suffered through decades of heartache, disappointment, and having the wool thrown over their eyes. Read more...

How Medicinal Cannabis Became Legal in Puerto Rico
By 2013, 52 percent of Americans were in favor of legalizing cannabis for medicinal use. Read more...

How Pot Shops Are Doing After Hurricane Maria
With crops destroyed and dispensaries badly damaged, there's been uncertainty about whether Puerto Rico’s cannabis industry can survive such a devastating blow. Read more...

Utuado, Puerto Rico: One Year After Hurricane Maria
All-inclusive resorts facing white, sandy beaches; the forts in Old San Juan; El Yunque Rainforest; the bioluminescent bay; home of tostones, arroz con gandules and the original piña colada; salsa music and the coquí frog all have the makings of the perfect vacation on the Caribbean island dubbed, “La Isla del Encanto” (The Enchanted Island). Read more...


Agriculture

How My Husband and I Went From Corporate Drones to Tropical Organic Farmers in Puerto Rico
I remember the day like it was yesterday. Read more on Mother Earth News Blog...

From Corporate Drones to Organic Farmers: Putting Our Plan into Action
From hatched plan to landing on the island of Puerto Rico to buy a farm took us about a year. Read more on Mother Earth News Blog...

Op-ed: 6 Reasons People of Color Should Grow Their Own Food
In November 2007, my husband and I decided to leave our jobs in biotech, sell our Southern California suburban house, and buy an organic farm. Read more...

Growing Your Own Food is a Revolutionary Act
Despite the pandemic, the ongoing #JusticeforGeorge protests, casual murders of Black men by police, white supremacists inciting race wars and lynchings in southern California, I continue to preach that one of the most empowering and revolutionary actions we can take is to return to our roots and what we've done for thousands of years: take responsibility for growing our own food. Read more...


Health & Wellness

How I Finally Improved My Gut Health
Ever since I can remember, I’ve envied people who could eat anything. Read more...

For Black Americans, lifesaving medical care too often leads to lifelong debt
Maurice Handy of Charlotte, North Carolina, was diagnosed with stage 4 medullary thyroid cancer. Following surgery, he needed chemotherapy for life. Read more...

Angie Franklin and the Afro Yoga Movement
About a year ago, I took up yoga. Read more...

3 Sustainable Ways to Combat Covid-19 Stress And Weight Gain
Over the last week, several media outlets in both Canada and the United States have reported some unsurprising news: the Covid-19 pandemic hasn’t been very kind to our waistlines. Read more...

The Benefits of Black Pepper Oil
When you think about black pepper, you probably think of the seasoning you have sitting in your spice rack, not an essential oil. Read more...

Are All Essential Oils the Same? How to Determine Quality Essential Oils
At the start of the 21st century, American perception of the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries was somewhat favorable. Read more...

From Mesoamerica to the Chia Pet Smoothies: The Evolution of the Chia Seed
Did you have a Chia Pet growing up? Read more...

Cervical Cancer: What Is It, How Do You Get It and What to Do If You Have It?
Breast cancer gets a lot of attention, doesn’t it? Read more...


Personal Essays

How I Became Empowered the Night I Became a Statistic
When it happened to me, it bore no resemblance to any of the five likely scenarios my parents warned me about. Read more...


Pets & Veterinary Medicine

Wellness Plans Offer Substantial Benefits
One of the surest strategies for improving patient care and profitability is to offer wellness plans, which are perhaps the most underutilized marketing tool in the veterinary industry. Read more...

CBD for Cats: Exploring New Territory in Animal Health
One sentence excerpt One sentence excerpt One sentence excerpt Read more...

Profiles in Retirement 4 Professionals Who retired on Their Own Terms
About one-quarter of board-certified, practicing veterinarians in the United States are 60 years of age or older, according to a recent AVMA survey. Read more...

Official Guide to State Dogs—Does Your State Have One?
Over the years, individual states have looked for ways to express pride in their heritage. Read more...


Race & Racism

Companies are Finally Changing Racist Brand Names. But is it Enough?
From the moment we wake up until we go to sleep, it’s estimated that we are exposed to between 2,000 and 5,000 advertising messages daily. Read more...

Music, Politics and the Soundtrack of Rebellion
As long as there have been voices and instruments, people have made music to express themselves. Read more...

Why I Believe Racial Disparities Are The Reason Black People Are Dying From Cancer, Not Biological Differences
A few years before I was born (in 1966), my maternal grandmother (African American) died of a stroke. Read more...

A Legacy Denied: The Murder of Fred Hampton, 50 Years Later
On December 4, 1969, one of the country’s most promising young revolutionaries was murdered by police, in a joint operation fully supported by the FBI. Read more...

Three speeches by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and what we can learn from them today
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was only 39 years old when he was assassinated; however, in his short life, Dr. King achieved so much. Read more...

Overview of the Civil Rights Movement
There is a history of racial inequality in America and out of this the hunger for African Americans to be able to equally express their citizenship rights took a nationally tangible shape. Read more...

Was Charles M. Schulz a Racist? All Depends on Your Perspective
Was Charles Schulz a racist? Well, it all depends on your perspective. Read more...

Dr. Seuss- The Once Former Racist Writes a Wrong
I first fell in love with the writing and messages of Theodor Geisel, a.k.a. Dr. Seuss when I was a kid. Read more...

Addressing the Fallacy and Danger of So-called Black Privilege
Mention the word race and immediately people’s minds start swirling. Read more...


Addiction & Mental Health

6 Common Misconceptions About Adult Children of Alcoholics
No one doubts that the legacy of alcoholism is toxic. Read more...

Why I Did a Complete 180 About Medical Marijuana
If you knew me when I was growing up, you'd know why it's pretty surprising how I feel about marijuana. Read more...

Gabapentin Withdrawal: My Story
My gabapentin withdrawal symptoms included vertigo from the moment I woke up until about midday, hot flashes that rivaled menopause, daily migraines, and what I prefer to just call intestinal distress. Read more...

My Failure at Getting My Mother and Brothers to Quit Drinking
When I was 5 and in the second grade, rather abruptly my mother quit her editing job at The New Yorker so she could stay home and raise my two brothers and me. Read more...


Spanish

¿El Cenabais Puede Curar la Glioblastoma y Otros Tipos de Cancer?
Se trata de una mujer joven que venció al glioblastoma, a pesar de las probabilidades. Read more...

El ecosistema de tecnología e innovación de Puerto Rico supera obstáculos políticos y culturales
Aunque la educación y el financiamiento para el sector STEM (sigla en inglés para el área de Ciencia, Tecnología, Ingeniería y Matemáticas) de Puerto Rico están en aumento y se muestran prometedoras como motor para crear empleos bien remunerados en el futuro, una larga historia de decisiones políticas desafortunadas amenaza este horizonte. Read more...