CEO of cannabis firm Women Grow steps down to focus on dispensary

Leah Heise, who became the CEO of Women Grow less than a year ago, announced this week that she’s leaving the national cannabis event and networking company, effective immediately, to run her own medical marijuana dispensary in Maryland.

While Women Grow searches for a new corporate leader, Chief Operating Officer Kristina Neoushoff will take over as interim CEO, according to a news release from the company.

Women Grow co-founder Jane West said in the release the company “fully supports” Heise’s decision to depart and focus on her dispensary. Heise won preliminary approval from Maryland for the dispensary license and is awaiting the final OK from regulators.

“Although saddened, we respect her decision,” West said. “During Leah’s time with Women Grow she made incredible strides in restructuring our organization and elevating our mission to another level.”

Heise, a longtime Maryland attorney, took over as head of Women Grow in mid-2016 from former CEO Jazmin Hupp. Heise will keep an unspecified amount of equity in Women Grow. As a company stakeholder, she will also continue to vote on major company decisions “regarding its organization and expenditures,” according to the release.