Ellen Komp has been a hemp/marijuana activist and author since 1991 and is currently deputy director of California NORML. Komp edited the 9th edition of The Emperor Wears No Clothes by Jack Herer and was a volunteer petitioner for the California Hemp Initiative (1993, 1994) and Proposition 215 (1995). She worked as a writer and editor at HempWorld magazine, the first trade journal for the hemp industry, and co- founded The 215 Reporter, the first journal covering California’s medical marijuana law and its aftermath.
In 1999, Komp became a Program Associate at The Lindesmith Center in San Francisco (now Drug Policy Alliance), where she planned a forum series on drug war issues, and sat on various committees at the San Francisco public health department. In 2001, she was named High Times’s Freedom Fighter of the Month.
In 2002, Komp moved to Humboldt County where she worked for the Civil Liberties Monitoring Project in Garberville. She sat on the Humboldt County medical marijuana task force, resulting in a county ordinance to implement SB420.
Komp has a B.S. in Biochemistry (Penn State, 1980) and worked in advertising and publishing in Los Angeles. She has contributed articles and op-eds to various publications such as High Times, In These Times, Alternet, O’Shaughnessy’s, West Coast Leaf, Eureka Times-Standard and Cannabis Now. In 2015, she received NORML’s Pauline Sabin Award “in recognition of the importance of women in leadership positions in organizations dedicated to ending marijuana prohibition.” For the past 16 years, Ellen has gathered information about prominent cannabis connoisseurs at her website, VeryImportantPotheads.com and now blogs at www.tokinwoman.blogspot.com.
Among her discoveries is Mark Twain. Her new book, “Tokin’ Women: A 4,000-Year Herstory” presents biographies of over 50 famous females throughout herstory who used cannabis, from the Goddess Ishtar to Miley Cyrus.