Janis Holloway talks a lot about marijuana these days. And pretty soon Holloway, who holds a degree in biology and runs her own marketing company, hopes to be selling more of it than anyone else in the city.

“This opportunity with marijuana coming to the state of Pennsylvania at this point, you have to look at it like Prohibition back in the day – and it’s a great opportunity that we want to be involved in,” she said.

Holloway’s Prohibition reference obviously refers to the 21st Amendment legalizing of the sale of alcohol in 1933. Pennsylvania in 2016 passed a state law legalizing the sale of medicinal marijuana, beginning in early 2018.

Holloway is one of seven principals of newly-formed company PA Holistic Health & Wellness Center, one of hundreds of organizations across the state that filed applications in March to be among the 27 that will be selected by the Department of Human Services on or after June 17 to run marijuana dispensaries. Twelve grower and processor permits will also be issued.

Holloway and her seven partners are unique in that they are a 100-percent-owned minority company. Pennsylvania is said to be placing an emphasis on awarding marijuana businesses with plans to incorporate minorities in ownership, distribution, transportation and other aspects of the business.

“We pretty much check all the boxes,” said Holloway, who, if awarded a dispensary license, would operate in the Nicetown section of the city.

Holloway’s group of seven breaks down as four women, two African Americans, one Asian, one Latino and one disabled member. While she is not certain, Holloway believes her group is the only one – perhaps in the entire state – owned and operated solely by minorities. The Associated Press reported, according to City Councilman Derek Green, at least four predominantly minority

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