What’s in Your Stash? Leslie La Duke Banionis, Co-Founder of Stella Maris


Washington State cannabis advocate Leslie La Duke Banionis is a modern-day apothecary, making remedies for herself, while teaching others.

When Washington State voted to legalize cannabis for adult use, its medical program was put in jeopardy, with caregivers pushed out of the proverbial driver’s seat as legal remedy makers for many in their community.

The caregiver cooperative model often began with friends, family, and neighbors as an affordable healthcare option, with its patient base growing as people heal. This model ran smoothly for decades under the compassionate care program that began in California and was then practiced in many medically legal states. The program is now fading as recreational weed makes its home in pricey dispensaries—pushing many patients back into an unregulated market.

Apothecary was the method of healing for thousands of years, using plant-based remedies, gradually replaced by the late 1930s, with synthetic, patented pharmaceuticals. Those who…


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