2020 Growth Closing Statement

Unfortunately, 20/20 Growth Conferences has gone out of business.
To all who helped with any of our events and conferences, I am deeply and forever grateful for all your help and support.
Together, we produced two conferences, which, given their budget size, significantly outperformed! We leave the legacy of two reports:

Cannabis Public Policy Conference Report March 2020

Cannabis Public Policy Conference II Report September 2020

Our two Public Policy reports stand as testaments in time to the challenges cannabis professionals face because of an overbearing federal government that refuses to listen to the will of the people. By the end of the 2020 elections, nearly 40 states had some form of legal cannabis on the books. Nearly 40 states are at some stage of growth in the cannabis balancing act that is delivering to the voters what they want – legal, taxed and safe access to cannabis – while mollifying a federal government with powers of massive proportion.
When it comes to the cannabis plant, America has an indifferent – some would say hateful – federal bureaucracy. To make matters worse, “the feds” have little-to-no data to back up their extreme position of complete prohibition. And their uneven and racist enforcement of these victimless “crimes” is well documented.
Indeed, touch the plant, and you can still be incarcerated. Touch cannabis and your institution is at risk of losing all federal funding. All of America’s top research universities depend on federal money, and as such, have complete bans on cannabis research. It’s not just that the feds won’t pay for the science – they will yank federal funding if a scientist on campus so much as stores a little.
Don’t bother asking your doctor or hospital about the proven medicinal properties of cannabis. Despite the well documented cases of relief from chemo when smoking cannabis, every medical professional in America depends on federal Medicare dollars, if not also Medicaid dollars. They have to tell you they “Don’t recommend” you self medicate with cannabis. Just understand, its only because the federal government is holding them hostage.
If medical professionals were free to speak about the science, they would tell their cancer patients to get an ounce of some juicy buds at a local dispensary and try to find some comfort smoking it while they go through the hell that is chemo.

Thanks Especially To All Our Sponsors

If you go to our sponsors page, you can see an array of cannabis professionals who are more than just successful business people. The businesses who sponsored our conferences are concerned citizens seeking to unleash the medicinal properties of the cannabis plant and expand freedom for Americans.
Please take a minute to visit our sponsor page and see if you can patronize one or more of these dynamic, hard working, full integrity professionals.
In hindsight, I probably should have released this statement six to ten months ago. In my defense, at the time, I was hoping this pandemic would blow over and conferences would be accepted again. Or at least at a point where no one would accuse me of endangering the community.
And its worth noting, at our September conference, we took all precautions – masks, distancing, temperature threshold to enter – and in a follow up with all three dozen attendees, we didn’t get a single report of anyone being sick. Thank God. (The March 5-6, 2020 conference famously lost Governor Jared Polis to a last minute cancellation because he instead needed to inform the world Colorado had just confirmed its first coronavirus case.)
Some will wonder why 20/20 Growth Conferences folded its tent. it would be easy to blame the pandemic. Certainly, the pandemic took a bite out of the business.
But millions of businesses were bitten by this wretched pandemic. I can’t use covid as an excuse. At the end of the day, my business failed for the reason so many businesses fail. My business – I – failed to bring in enough revenue to sustain me and my family. At the time, I honestly thought I would sell my house, rent somewhere, and use the equity to keep floating the business and my family along. But when that time came, my family didn’t think that was a smart plan, and honestly, in hindsight, they were right. I was just so determined not to quit, I was ready to sell my house and go “all in.”
But even now as I write this, as 2021 turns into 2022, this pandemic is, if anything, getting even worse. Looking at the state of public health and public gatherings right now, let’s just say that moving on from a conference company to the next step in my career doesn’t seem crazy.
It’s tough for me, I always wanted my own company and I was bound and determined to make it work. It was extremely stressful to get eight months into a new conference company only to read every day that some strange new virus was washing up on our shores and spreading like wildfire with consequences known to be deadly, but not fully understood.
In hindsight, I probably should have just shut it down the second week of March 2020. But at that time, if you told me the pandemic would rage for 2+ years (3 years? 4 years? 10 years?) I would have laughed at you. I have way too much faith in people and our health institutions and scientists. At that time, I honestly thought we’d have it under control by September. I secretly hoped my timing would be perfect, that people would be emerging and hungry come September 2020.
It didn’t play out that way. Only 36 people attended the September 2020 conference in person. Ask any conference organizer, if you know the EXACT number of people who passed through your doors, your event was a failure. We went with a hybrid model, experimenting with a new software platform on our end and new type of conference interface for attendees. It was, at best, a mixed success.
This was no fault of some great volunteers like David Wilkinson and his team at The Hemp Business Advisors, and Rich Wells, the principal at Green Flash. To all who helped, thank you.
I suspect that every industry will end up with one, possibly a few, really huge on-line annual gatherings. And they will be indispensable in some ways.
And while I never say never, I regret to say that 20/20 Growth Conferences won’t be one of those handful of giant cannabis events.
Thanks to all who made our conferences the successes that they were!
Sincerely,
Michael Scanlon

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