Coalitions and Testimonials

Johnny’s Ambassadors thanks these amazing Drug-Free Community coalitions, non-profits, schools, and prevention organizations for their partnership. Laura Stack has given a live or virtual presentation to the following organizations:

Addiction Prevention Coalition of Birmingham, AL
Anaconda-Deer Lodge, MT Coalition
Andalusia school system
Aroostook County Action Program
Baker County, FL
Bay Area Community Resources
Bay Area Council on Drugs & Alcohol
Cannabis Awareness & Prevention Conference
Chaparral High School, Parker, CO
City and County of Honolulu – Substance Abuse Prevention Section
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA)
Central Virginia Addiction and Recovery Resources Coalition of Lynchburg, VA
Comfort TX Drug Free Coalition
Community Coalitions of Idaho
Community Coalitions of Virginia (CCoVA)
Covington County Children’s Policy Council Coalition of Andalusia, AL
Christian Brothers Academy, NJ
Decatur Parents Network Speaker Series
Douglas County Sheriff’s Office
Drug Free America Foundation
Drug Free Comfort Texas
Durham Middlefield Local Wellness Coalition
East Lyme Youth Services, CT
Franklin/Fulton Drug & Alcohol of Chambersburg, PA
Frenchtown Community Coalition Coordinator of Frenchtown, MT
Galena Park Independent School District
High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA Rocky Mountains)
Hingham Cares
Idaho Juvenile Justice Association
Iowa Alliance of Coalitions for Change (AC4C)
Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems of Springfield, IL
International Academy on the Science and Impact of Cannabis
Iowa Alliance of Coalitions for Change (AC4C) Johnstown, IA
Johnston Prevention Coalition
KNOW 2 Prevent
LUK, Inc. – Leominster Community Action Team of Fitchburg, MA
Lyme Youth Service Bureau, Old Lyme, CT
Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)
Manhasset Coalition Against Substance Abuse (CASA), Inc.
Mighty Parenting
Milford Prevention Council of Milford, CT
Mount Rogers Community Services
NE Prevention Resource Center
New Canaan Cares
Operation Parent
Palm Beach County Coalition
PILLAR Institute for Lifelong Learning
Pivot 2 Health of Watertown, NY
Prevention Council of Roanoke County of Roanoke, VA
Prevention Resources of Flemington, NJ
Prevention Resources and the Safe Communities Coalition
PTTC Region 3 – the Danya Institute
Red Bank Catholic High School, NJ
Red Bank Regional High School, NJ
Region III Wellness Council, Southwest Virginia
Regional Alliance for Substance Abuse Prevention (RASAP)
Roanoke Valley Prevention Council
Rotary Club Denver
Rotary District Literacy Conference
Salmon Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition
Sandstone Residential Care
SD Medical Marijuana Coalition
Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth (SCL) Health Systems
Smart Approaches to Marijuana
Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD)
Substance Abuse Free Indian River (SAFIR)
Substance Abuse Prevention System Coalition, North Platte, NE
Suicide Prevention Council of Roanoke Valley, VA
The Compassionate Friends
Watertown, NY PIVOT coalition
Winooski Partnership for Prevention, Inc.
Yonkers Coalition for Youth
Young Men’s Service League, CA
Your Choice Prevention Education of Oconomowoc, WI
YSS AMP Statewide

Dear Laura, I just finished listening to the webinar you did for us and had to take a moment to thank you. Thank you for your passion and persistence.  This webinar was the best I ever attended. The information you shared was priceless, practical, and will save lives. There were so many takeaways for me but this one says it all:  “Silence implies permission.” Your passion has re-ignited my passion to not be silent about marijuana and the many other issues we address. I am so sorry for your loss of Johnny, an amazing son!  Thank you for sharing his life with all of us.
Jean Schumm, President & Founder, Operation Parent”

“The Dangerous Truth About Today’s Marijuana” is a Must! One of the most powerful, authentically delivered, and science-informed educational awareness webinars I’ve seen for parents,  adolescents, and prevention stakeholders that can save lives and promote healthy choices.” – Deborah Nixon Hughes, Central East PTTC Project Director

Eyes opened. Jaws dropped. Minds blown. Hearts hurting. Marijuana madness. Who knew how dangerous it has proven to be! I surely didn’t until I read your book on Johnny’s life and death then even more information presented during your seminar on “The Dangerous Truth About Today’s Marijuana” in FL. Your topics explained so much: The brain connections and damage, the types of THC products easily available, the mental health issues that can be permanent, and the sad reality of suicide risk. You truly opened our eyes and front-loaded our team and community to better understand the danger of this substance that seems to be gripping our youth. Thank you for taking your pain and purposely making Johnny’s life count by educating our youth and community.”
– Susan Foley, Palm Beach County Behavioral Health Coalition 

“One of the best presentations I have ever heard in my 10+ years working in child welfare/prevention. I am STILL thinking about it and have shared with others. You are amazing.”
– Sarah Wiedenhoeft / AMP Statewide Coordinator, IA

This was truly the best presentation I’ve seen to date on the current state of marijuana. Those of us who work in prevention need to fully understand what you shared with us.”
– Carie Wimberly, Executive Director, Addiction Prevention Coalition

Laura is one of the most effective speakers we have ever utilized. She speaks from the heart, coupled with knowledge and passion to connect with parents and students. This was our first in-person daytime event since the pandemic and to look at the faces in the audience, Laura has made an impact on so many students.  Before the presentation, parents and even law enforcement were completely unaware of the dangers of high-potency THC and shocked at its effect on our youth.
– Connie Bruno, Director, Program Development and Community Engagement
Manhasset Coalition Against Substance Abuse (CASA), Inc.

“We were able to send 11 SROs to this presentation. SRO Deputy Savage at Chaparral HS attended and was very impressed with her knowledge stating that Laura Stack was very well informed on the current trends and usage of marijuana by youth in the schools.  He stated that it was the best presentation on THC that he has seen, and we hope to get her to speak in other schools so that all SROs can attend. In addition, I spoke to the YESS instructors, and they would like to ask her to speak at our next Parent Academy.
– Lt. Rotherham, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Juvenile/SRO Section

“Words cannot express how much we appreciated your presentation yesterday. The fact that you have been able to take what is arguably the most difficult experience anyone could have and turn it into a teaching tool with a cautionary word for others is so humbling for those of us who are in your presence. We will absolutely be in touch about having you join us again next year.”
– Kristen Arute, Program Director, Hingham Cares, Inc.

Feedback from webinars from individuals:

Prompt: What did you find most helpful?

  • The testimony the parent who has lost a child from the addiction of marijuana. The different signs that can be missed even when you’re trying to be the perfect parent.
  • The other side of the story when it comes to marijuana
  • The potency of the current marijuana and how it negatively impacts teens brain and behavior. Very scary.
  • I found it extremely helpful to know the different types of THC products available. Tampons??? I’m blown away.
  • EVERYTHING – Our 15 yr. old started smoking and vaping in middle school.  We started to go to a parent group and there first heard of ‘dabs’.  Didn’t know much other than it was higher concentration – but didn’t realize what that truly meant.  Nothing else was covered, it was just mentioned by another parent.
  • Everything. As a mom to a teen and prevention specialist, I always learn new strategies and tips, and I appreciate how candid and open Laura was about her story and advocating for young adults.
  • I didn’t realize how many forms of THC was available and how many chemicals that goes into some of these substances.
  • I realized I had an antiquated view of marijuana. I had no idea about the latest methods.
  • This family is just like ours, minus the addiction.  It can happen in the best families with the most attentive parents.  Zero tolerance of any substance is a must! 
  • I appreciated the thorough scientific research into the different types of marijuana being used today and the science of how this can affect the brain.
  • All of it!  One of the best I’ve ever seen! Heart-wrenching but excellent. This mother is a super star.
  • I work in the prevention field, and all the info on dabbing was eye opening, as was the mention of protective factors, which we preach often to parents, and how sometimes it isn’t enough. The more facts I learn, the better so that I can pass them off when I talk to teens.
  • So much great information, especially the mental health diagnosis that can come after marijuana use
  • Just hearing Johnny’s story and how people always say that marijuana is not bad but hearing ways that it is makes me more informed.
  • Laura’s firsthand experience of everything she talked about.  Her giving her witness of her own and her son’s story.  The real-life examples and stories. 
  • The emphasis on drug education v just arguing ‘drugs are bad”
  • The journey and how marijuana is being used by teens to be masked and to be socially acceptable
  • Education on high potency marijuana and provided more information to youth regarding the dangers
  • The personal story from a mom whose child dealt with addiction.
  • How the transition, from healthy individual to someone who became addicted to marijuana, was told/presented.
  • The different ways children have access to the drug.
  • It validated the beliefs that I had about my ex-husband’s behavior and its relationship to vaping THC.
  • It helps us to be aware of what marijuana can do in one’s body and health.
  • We have a big rise of suicide in our town.  Everything helped.  Too many tears
  • EVERYTHING!! This is the BEST webinar I have ever attended! I liked that we got to see the life of Johnny with the video and then how Marijuana impacted Johnny’s life.
  • Laura’s courage and perspective as a parent who did all the right things and raised a very smart young man – while a devastating story, it is an important wake-up call to similar parents who also have high-performing kids.  Getting the information on the neurological effects of THC and how products are marketed is extremely helpful, too.  Johnny’s story left a profound impression on me.  Thank you for making this program available. 
  • Wonderful information that can be used in our prevention efforts in our community.
  • Pictures and facts of the different high potency options of marijuana
  • The big variety of “products” with high THC concentrations and the values of the THC concentrations compared to the marijuana when we grew up
  • The truth does not deter politicians from being bought and willing to do anything for tax revenue!
  • The scientific facts presented in a way that was understandable. Also, the story telling is very powerful.
  • I really didn’t know that the current marijuana isn’t really a plant substance.
  • The importance of the difference between the weed of my day and the potency of what is available to adolescents today.
  • Johnny’s story, breakdown on the brain science, and the fact all the protective factors were in place.
  • I thought the combination of her personal story about Johnny and the statistics/research was all very good information.
  • Laura did an excellent job, placing information with a real-life story is super impactful!
  • I found everything to be helpful, but I enjoyed her personal stories of her interactions with her son.
  • Information about the law that was passed in Colorado limiting concentrate levels
  • Her vast knowledge on this topic.  Explaining the difference in marijuana composition from years past to current state.  Scromiting…yuck.  Never heard that term, but it paints a vivid image of what people are going through.  Current statistical information and not just limited to U.S. data.
  • How dangerous eatables are.
  • The insight into the THC induced psychosis… Such powerful information!
  • Johnny’s story and how his mother wants to prevent it from happening to others.

Feedback from 4/28/22 session of the Stanford Teaching Cannabis Awareness & Prevention Conference:

Prompt: What are 2-3 things you learned from this workshop that you can use in your everyday job?

  • I did not know Marijuana can cause Psychosis.
  • The dangers, the misconceptions, the courage of this mom….
  • WOW! So heartwarming and extremely informative!! I will definitely share Johnny’s story and Laura’s great advice.
  • The importance to have an open and clear conversation about the dangers of using thc.
  • Have a word between you and your child if they need to be picked up from a dangerous place or party.
  • Laura Stack has channeled her grief into an amazing teaching tool. I didn’t want to watch. I have 4 grown children and can’t imagine her heartbreak. Not only is her story mesmerizing, but her information is critical.
  • The truth about the dangers of todays marijuana, dabbing, and speaking to youth at an early age.
  • I have attended Laura’s workshops in the past and every time, I learn something new. She is very well educated on the dangers of cannabis use in the adolescent and her shared experiences are very profound. I applaud her and her family for continuing to “spread the message.” God Bless them!
  • Any Cannabis THC over 10% is considered high potency and CIP = Cannabis induced psychosis.
  • This is the second time that I have heard Laura present Johnny’s story, and I refer many of the community groups I work with to learn Johnny’s story and talk about the dangers of Cannabis and Psychosis.
  • All about high potency THC, wow, didn’t realize all the different choices!
  • There is no amount of THC that should be allowed in adolescent’s brain development. Daily marijuana use is linked to higher rates of suicidality.

Additional comments:

  • Beyond words. This was so powerful.
  • Our deeply condolences for your beautiful son lost, Laura. It is very powerful mission of work that you are doing every day. Thank you so much for your courage and consideration of saving someone’s live with your story, as well helping us as parents or marijuana use providers. Yes THC law makers should build penalties to cannabis stores who are killing our kids by selling all these unregulated products or too high level with the intention of creating addiction.
  • Thank you Laura! God is using you to change lives and to save lives. I know you didn’t ask for this mission & purpose, but I honor you for your message.
  • She was amazing! Powerful testimony that should receive lot of exposure.
  • Her story is powerful, and she is an excellent speaker that keeps you engaged!
  • Will definitely follow on FB and use your curriculum in my class. This was the best session I attended! Thank you!
  • Thank you so much for sharing your story.
  • Best session!
  • GREAT Story! Thank you for sharing.