“An oracle of knowledge on all things marijuana” - Boston Herald
I’m a drug historian, writer and researcher based near Washington, D.C. I received my BA from New York University and earned my Ph.D. in American Studies from George Washington University. I’m currently a Senior Research Associate for Nina Gilden Seavey, director of the GWU Documentary Center, helping her on a multi-part investigative documentary podcast for Pineapple Street Media. I’m also the managing editor of Points, the blog of the Alcohol and Drugs History Society, and a podcast host on the New Books Network, where I interview authors on new books about drugs, addiction and recovery.
My first book, Grass Roots: The Rise and Fall and Rise of Marijuana in America, traces over 50 years of cannabis activism and was based off my dissertation. Since its publication, I’ve become a trusted commentator on America’s changing cannabis scene. I’ve appeared on CNN, the History Channel and NPR’s Back Story with the American History Guys, and my writing has been featured on TIME, CNN, Smithsonian Magazine, and the Washington Post.
I live in the People’s Republic of Takoma Park, Maryland, with my husband Dickson Mercer and our son Henry. I’m currently at work on my second book, a history of medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder.