Awarded And Honored People

Robert Platshorn

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Robert Platshorn is the HIGH TIMES Freedom Fighter of the Year for 2014!

Robert Platshorn is the author of Black Tuna Diaries. He is America's longest (30 years) imprisoned non-violent marijuana offender. Raised on South St. in downtown Philadelphia, acting ambitions earned him a supporting role in a successful off Broadway play while still in high school. The same skill led to Robert becoming one of America's most famous pitchmen. The late Billy Mays called him a “legend in the pitch business.” He was seen for years on TV, at fairs and shows selling Vita Mix, frozen food knives and gadgets. 

At the age of 24, he moved to London to found Dynamic Reading Institutes. Starting with a rented classroom, within three years he had opened fourteen schools in three countries. Upon his return to the US, he started the Ice Cream Factory. Using a unique pushcart that he invented, he became the second largest distributor of Breyers ice cream.

In 1975, he moved to Miami, FL to attend law school. At that time, Miami was the center of the Colombian pot trade. Robert turned his business acumen to the mission of smuggling Colombian pot.

It was attorney general Griffin Bell that named Robert's organization the “Black Tuna Gang” and alleged they were responsible for smuggling most of the marijuana crossing the Florida coast. In 1979, a year after quitting the smuggling business, he was indicted, convicted and sentenced to 64 years in federal prison. He was released in late 2008 after serving almost 30 years in eleven different prisons.

In 2010 he founded The Silver Tour to teach seniors the benefits of medical marijuana. Robert now lives in Florida with his wife Lynne. He works for medical marijuana and has actively collecting signatures for this year’s Florida ballot medical marijuana initiative. He appears in the media constantly to promote the cause, as well as speaking at universities, concerts, benefits and expos to promote the cause and tell his story.

(Source, High Times)

Sasha and Ann Shulgin

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Inductees to the Counterculture Hall of Fame are Sasha and Ann Shulgin.

Alexander Theodore "Sasha" Shulgin (June 17, 1925 – June 2, 2014) was an American medicinal chemist, biochemist, 
pharmacologist, psychopharmacologist, and author known for his creation of new psychoactive chemicals. In 1960, Sasha tried mescaline for the first time. 

He then experimented with synthesizing chemicals with structures similar to mescaline such as DOM. 

He taught public health at Berkeley and San Francisco General Hospital. Although he didn't invent it, Sasha first synthesized MDMA in 1965; however, he did not try it at that time. 

In 1976, the effects of MDMA were described to Sasha by an undergrad at San Francisco State University. Sasha was inspired to cook up a batch of the drug, which he began testing on himself in September of that year. He found the compound to have worthwhile qualities.

In 1977 he introduced the material to Leo Zeff, an Oakland psychologist who worked with psychedelics in his therapy practice. Zeff introduced hundreds of therapists to MDMA and word quickly spread outside the therapist community. 

After that, Sasha Shulgin synthesized and self-tested hundreds of psychoactive chemicals, recording his work in five books and more than two hundred papers. 

He was a fixture in the psychedelic community, who testified in court, granted frequent interviews and instilled a sense of rational scientific thought into the world of self-experimentation and psychoactive ingestion.

Sasha's partner Ann Shulgin also conducted psychedelic therapy sessions with MDMA before it was placed on the US government’s list of banned controlled substances. In her writings, she has stressed the potential of these drugs from a psychoanalytic perspective, as well as their use in combination with hypnotherapy. She often appears as a speaker at conventions, and has continued to advocate the use of psychedelics in therapeutic contexts.

Sasha and Ann authored the books Pihkal and Tihkal and contributed to the books Thanatos to Eros: 35 Years of Psychedelic Exploration, Entheogens and the Future of Religion, Ecstasy: The Complete Guide, The Secret Chief Revealed, Higher Wisdom: Eminent Elders Explore the Continuing Impact of Psychedelics, and Manifesting Minds: A Review of Psychedelics in Science, Medicine, Sex, and Spirituality. 

In April of 2010, Sasha and Ann Shulgin were honored for their lifetime of achievements in the field at the Psychedelic Science in the 21st Century conference in San Jose, CA

On November 17, 2010 Sasha suffered a stroke. Though his recovery went well, he continued to face a variety of age-related health challenges. On June 2nd, 2014, he died at home surrounded by friends and family.

The Counterculture Hall of Fame was created in 1997 by High Times Editor Steven Hager. The purpose of the Hall of Fame was to help focus ceremonies at the annual Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam, and to celebrate the history of the counterculture by recognizing its saints. The inductions are done in Amsterdam every year on Thanksgiving as part of the Cannabis Cup awards show. Often a documentary film is shown to introduce the inductee(s) to the audience. A silver Cannabis Cup is awarded as part of the induction ceremony.

 (Source: Wikipedia,High Times)

Marc Emery

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In 2014 Marc Scott Emery receives the Lester Grinspoon Lifetime Achievement Award during the 27th High Times Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam.

Marc Scott Emery (born February 13, 1958) is a Canadian activist who is famous for starting a political, capitalist cannabis movement across Canada. 

Marc Emery began his cannabis activism in 1990, when he launched a campaign to challenge Canada's 1987 ban on books and magazines about marijuana in particular,
 HIGH TIMES magazine. (The ban was also on all smoking devices like bongs and pipes.In 1995, Emery achieved his first goal as marijuana books and magazines were made legal.

Emery is most famous for starting a political, capitalist cannabis movement across Canada. In 1994, he began selling cannabis seeds as a fundraising tool, which allowed him to donate more than $5 million to ballot initiatives, lawsuits against the US federal government, Canadian Supreme Court challenges and a huge array of campaigns world wide. 

Emery is also known from the Cannabis Culture magazine, working as publisher from 1994 to 2009. He says he was greatly influenced by people like Ayn Rand and the late Jack Herer.

The day after the 2000 federal election in Canada, Marc Emery founded The British Columbia Marijuana Party (BCMP) which advocates the legalization of cannabisThe BCMP made provincial history during the 2001 provincial election that came six months later, by being the only party to ever field candidates in all of the province's ridings during their first election campaign.  

In his pursuit to legalize cannabis Emery has been arrested 28 times for pot-related offenses, raided 5 times, and has been jailed or imprisoned 23 times. In
 August 2014, Marc was released from a US federal prison after serving a 5-year sentence for selling seeds, in a US court, he agreed that he had distributed 3 million seeds to the US from 1995-2005.

His famous quote is "Plant the Seeds of Freedom, Overgrow the Government." A quote he has lived his life by, Marc Emery is often referred to as: "the Prince of Pot". For his devotion and dedication for legalization he is awarded the Lester Grinspoon Lifetime Achievement Award.

(Sources; cannabiscup.com, cannabisculture.com, wikipedia.org)

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