Scientific Advisory Board

These medical professionals believe today’s high-potency marijuana has negative impacts on adolescent brain development, resulting in poor outcomes, including an increase in mental illness and suicide. We are pleased to support their work and thank them for their partnership.

Dr. Christian Thurstone, M.D. is board-certified in child psychiatry and addiction psychiatry. For 18 years, he has been the director of a busy adolescent substance treatment program in Denver. He currently serves as the director of behavioral health at Denver Health and is a professor of psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

Dr. Libby Stuyt, M.D. is an addiction psychiatrist at the Pueblo Community Health Center and a clinical faculty member of the CU School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry. After serving for 20 years as the Director of the CO Mental Health Institute at the Pueblo Circle Program, Dr. Stuyt believes, “High-potency marijuana is the worst drug we have, because it is so insidious. Everyone has ‘normalized’ it and believes it is safe.”

Dr. Kenneth P. Finn, M.D. has practiced pain medicine for 24 years. He served on the CO Governor’s Task Force on Amendment 64 and the CO Medical Marijuana Scientific Advisory Council. Dr. Finn is an Executive Board Member of the American Board of Pain Medicine. He is also involved in the Colorado Pain Society and Colorado Medical Society’s work to manage the state’s opioid epidemic.

Dr. Erik Messamore, M.D. is an expert in the fields of psychopharmacology, complex mood disorders, psychosis, and schizophrenia. He’s an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the NE Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) and the Medical Director of NEOMED’s Best Practices in Schizophrenia Treatment Center. He is a seasoned clinician and accomplished scientist, with a passion for improving the lives of those affected by mental illness.

Dr. Karen Randall, M.D. is an emergency medicine physician. Dr. Randall has a certificate in Cannabis Science and Medicine from the University of Vermont. Her residency training was in family practice, pediatrics, and emergency medicine, and she taught at a large teaching hospital in Detroit. She currently practices emergency medicine in southern Colorado, where she is the VP of case management for the emergency department.

Dr. Aaron Weiner, Ph.D. is a practicing clinical psychologist, specializing in the treatment of individuals suffering from the consequences of drug or alcohol use or behavioral addictions. He’s the bridge between addiction science and the front-line realities of youth drug prevention. He knows first-hand the dangers of marijuana on the developing adolescent mind.

Dr. Crystal Collier, LPC-S has worked with individuals suffering from mental, behavioral, and substance use disorders since 1991. Her areas of expertise include adolescent brain development, parent coaching, family of origin therapy, prevention programming, and training new clinicians. She possesses a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, and a doctorate in Counselor Education.

Mary Cannon MB BCh BAO, FRCPsych, MSc, PhD is a consultant psychiatrist and Professor of Psychiatric Epidemiology and Youth Mental Health in the Department of Psychiatry, RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences in Dublin, Ireland. Her longstanding research interest is in the area of young people’s mental health and in identifying early risk and protective factors for later mental illness, particularly psychosis. Professor Cannon currently holds a Consolidator Award from the European Research Council. She was listed in the 2020 Thomson Reuters most highly cited researcher list as one of the most cited researchers (top 1%) in her field internationally.

Scientific Advisory Board statement: We call it marijuana, not cannabis. Here’s why.