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February 2020 Presentation


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Our Signature Event of 2017 was a panel discussion we hosted titled: The Unintended Consequences of the Legalization of Marijuana

On November 7, 2000, Colorado voters approved Amendment 20, which amended the State Constitution to allow the use of marijuana in the state for approved patients with written medical consent.  The enactment of Colorado Amendment 64 in November 2012 allows limited sale and recreational use of marijuana in the state. Recreational sales began on January 1, 2014. Marijuana remains a federal schedule I controlled substance and is illegal to possess or sell per federal law and the Controlled Substance Act (CSA).

What have been the unintended consequences since Colorado legalized marijuana?  Our panelists shared their expertise and perspectives regarding the impact of the legalization of marijuana in the following areas:

  • Public health -   health effects of marijuana and the cost to society
  • Public safety – law enforcement challenges, black market and criminal activity
  • The money trail – revenues, taxes and costs
  • Protecting and educating children

You can watch the full video of the panel here:

Articles written by Tatiana Bailey:
The Economic Impact of the Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado - 07-21-2017
The Economic Impact of the Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado Part 2 - 08-18-2017
The Health Effects of the Legalization of Marijuana - 09-15-2017
The Safety-Related Impacts of the Legalization of Recreational Marijuana Part A - 10-27-2017
The Safety-Related Impacts of the Legalization of Recreational Marijuana Part B - 11-17-2017



Commander Sean Mandel, Colorado Springs Police Department:
Commander Sean Mandel joined the Colorado Springs Police Department in 1992. As an officer he worked as a Patrol Officer, a Narcotics Detective and a Homicide Detective. Commander Mandel was promoted to sergeant in 2004 and served in Patrol, Internal Affairs and the FBI Safe Streets Task Force. In 2008, Commander Mandel was promoted to lieutenant and was assigned to Patrol and the Specialized Enforcement Division before being promoted to commander in 2013. As a commander, Commander Mandel has been assigned to the Specialized Enforcement Division and the Metro Vice, Narcotics and Intelligence Division. Commander Mandel holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from St. Mary’s College and is a graduate of the Center for Creative Leadership’s “Leadership Development Program” and the FBI National Academy. Commander Mandel is a native of Colorado Springs and is a graduate of William Mitchell High School.

Diane Carlson-Robinson, Founding Leader of Smart Colorado:
Diane is a founding leader of Smart Colorado, a citizen led nonprofit organization, that formed after marijuana was legalized for recreational purposes.  

Smart Colorado’s sole focus is minimizing the unintended consequences for Colorado kids, as marijuana becomes increasingly commercialized and available. The organization has been the primary voice advocating for and securing important protections.  These include:  limits and restrictions on marketing and advertising, requirements around childproof packaging, labeling and warnings,  identification and marking of marijuana edibles, and securing of state funding and support for youth education and prevention, and data collection on youth impacts.

Smart Colorado’s education efforts have focused on highlighting the types and strength of today’s marijuana (THC potency), and why it matters, when it comes to protecting kids and communities.

Diane has participated in all aspects of the education, policy and regulatory making process. Appointed by the Governor, Diane continues to serve on the statewide marijuana education committee.  She remains a trusted information source for policy makers, media, youth, parent groups and community members.   She and the organization remain committed to ensuring that Coloradans, from all walks of life, can have a voice on an issue impacting kids and communities throughout the state.

Diane’s past work experience includes work as a financial and policy analyst on banking oversight and regulations at the New York Federal Reserve Bank.  After getting the entrepreneurial itch, Diane went on to build and run a successful staffing company that served major fortune 500 companies in New York City for over ten years.

For the past twenty years, Diane has been actively involved in Colorado public schools.  She has held executive positions in organizations focused on youth engagement and empowerment while championing and challenging policies impacting K-12 education, and the health and welfare of Colorado youth.  She is the mother of five children ages 16 to 26.

Diane has a B.A. in History/Economics from the University of Maryland, and a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard.

Tatiana Bailey, Ph.D., Director of UCCS Economic Forum in the  College of Business:
Tatiana Bailey has her Master’s in economics and her doctorate in public health, both from the University of Michigan. In the health care arena, Dr. Bailey has focused on programs that aim to increase access and quality while reducing costs particularly for at-risk populations. She also presents to audiences who wish to be better informed about the general framework of the health care system in the U.S.. In the economic development field, she has focused upon economic growth initiatives primarily through the venues of entrepreneurship and innovation. Currently, she is the Director of the UCCS Economic Forum within the College of Business and serves as an economic development resource to local businesses and government. She aims to inform audiences about our national and local economy and participates in initiatives that leverage the region's many assets.

Lucas Hennings, MD, FACEP, UC Health Memorial Hospital and UC School of Medicine:

Professional Work History

Assistant Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine     09/2016--current
University of Colorado School of Medicine
Colorado Springs, Colorado
I serve as clinical faculty and directly supervise medical students and residents in Emergency Medicine.  I also participate in education activities such as classroom lectures, simulation sessions, skills workshops, and others.  

Emergency Medicine Physician     06/2016--current
UC Health Memorial Hospital
Colorado Springs, Colorado
High volume, high acuity department which sees over 100,000 patients annually.  

Physician     05/2017--current
Hyperbaric Oxygen Medical Department
UC Health Memorial Hospital
Colorado Springs, Colorado
I provide advanced Hyperbaric treatment for patients with complex wounds, carbon monoxide poisoning, decompression sickness, cerebral arterial gas embolism, skin grafts, retinal artery occlusion, and other approved conditions.

Emergency Physician     06/2016--current
Memorial Hospital North
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Emergency Department which sees approximately 35,000 patients annually.

Emergency Physician     12/2016--current
Grandview Hospital
Colorado Springs, Colorado

Postgraduate Medical Training

Residency     07/2009—06/2012
Emergency Medicine
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center
Shreveport, Louisiana
Chief Resident 2011-2012

Internship     07/2009—06/2010
Emergency Medicine
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center
Shreveport, Louisiana


Doctor of Medicine     09/2005—05/2009
Ross University School of Medicine
Graduated with high honors

Bachelor of Science Business Administration/Finance     08/2000—05/2004
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO
Cum Laude

Board Certification

American Board of Emergency Physicians     2013-current

Professional Awards

Master Clinician     2013
This award is given to physicians with a proven track record of outstanding clinical performance and honors those who are consistently leaders in both productivity and in patient satisfaction.  It is given by Emergency Medicine Physicians, a large national physician-owned company that staffs Emergency Departments throughout the United States.