Author Gary Storck



Photo credit: Coburn Dukehart/Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism


Gary Storck is a medical cannabis Pioneer / Patient / Writer / Speaker / Activist in Wisconsin. Since March 2015, Gary has been posting on Cannabadger.com, "looking at the intersection of Wisconsin and cannabis", producing hundreds of articles covering cannabis developments in Wisconsin.

Storck was born with glaucoma and began losing sight at a young age. Conventional treatments were risky and medications ineffective. Extremely near-sighted, Gary was a voracious reader and in 1971 read news reports of research on cannabis and glaucoma at UCLA.

On Oct. 3, 1972 and a high school senior, Gary decided to undertake his own study, medicating with cannabis before a glaucoma checkup. The doctor, who had treated him since the glaucoma diagnosis more than a decade earlier, was elated to find Gary's typically highly elevated intraocular pressures at normal levels.

Understanding that it could save his sight, Gary began medicating with cannabis on a daily basis. He also began lobbying for Wisconsin's Therapeutic Cannabis Research Act (TCRA), passed and signed into law in 1982. Along the way he also enlisted the help of his congressional representatives and the first legal federal patient Bob Randall and his wife Alice O'Leary in what was ultimately an unsuccessful attempt to find a physician to file a Compassionate IND on his behalf to gain access to federal medical pot.

In 1978, Gary was among five glaucoma patients who anonymously filed affidavits about their medical use of cannabis for glaucoma in support of Bob Randall s successful lawsuit against the federal government after his federal pot supplies were abruptly cut.

Returning to Wisconsin after a dozen years in California in 1995, Gary restarted his efforts in Wisconsin advocating for medical cannabis a few years later, joining forces with medical cannabis pioneer and patient Jacki Rickert to advocate for medical cannabis through Is My Medicine Legal YET? (IMMLY.org). In 2005, Gary and Jacki were co-recipients of NORML's Peter McWilliams Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in Advancing the Cause of Medical Marijuana, along with Angel Raich and Diane Monson.

Storck has advised both Republican and Democratic Wisconsin lawmakers on medical cannabis and spoken at many public hearings and press conferences over the years. Gary has lobbied for cannabis law reform at all levels of government including the Madison, Monona and Tomah city councils, the Dane County Board, state lawmakers in Wisconsin, Michigan, Oregon and federal representatives in Wisconsin and at the US Capitol in Washington D.C.

Gary has done hundreds of interviews for print, television, radio and other media, and has spoken at many other different venues from Optimist and Kiwanis meetings to cannabis legalization events in multiple states.

In 2010, Gary, along with Jacki Rickert, were among the first out of state patients and the first Wisconsin patients to take advantage of changes in Oregon law allowing patients from all 50 states to register with the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP). In 2016, he lobbied on behalf of out of state patients at the Oregon Capitol in Salem after the OMMP closed the program to new and renewing out of state patients due to a change in state law.

Gary has been a member of the board of advisors of the medical cannabis educational non profit Patients Out of Time for many years and was on the faculty of their 2012 conference in Tucson, AZ. He has also had hundreds of letters to the editor and OPEDs published in newspapers in-state and nationally, and has published many articles and blog posts for Examiner.com and the Madison NORML blog.

In 2018, Gary wrote dozens of articles on Cannabadger covering the cannabis advisory referendum campaign that helped serve as a guide to developments as the campaign kept expanding. This comprehensive coverage helped keep people all over the state and beyond informed of the latest developments as multiple counties took up the issue, often on the same days. Storck has also continued to follow developments after the referendum sweep and election of pro-cannabis candidates Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul in Nov. 2018. Cannabadger has also followed the continuing fallout from the cannabis landslide along with legislation filed this session.

On November 12, 2019, Gary published his first book, "The Rise and Fall of Cannabis Prohibition in Wisconsin." This groundbreaking book, the first book of its kind focusing on the state of Wisconsin, is available from the author via CannabadgerMedia.com and will soon be on Amazon.com and at book stores through IngramSpark.

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