Dr. Jeff Chen MD/MBA is the Founder and Executive Director of the UCLA Cannabis Research Initiative. He is the nation’s leading expert on the interplay between the policy, business, and science of cannabis, hemp, and CBD.
At the age of 29, Dr. Chen became one of the youngest leaders of a major university research effort in America when he took the position of Founder and Executive Director of the UCLA Cannabis Research Initiative, one of the world’s first university programs dedicated to cannabis. At UCLA, Dr. Chen oversees his program’s interdisciplinary 40+ faculty – drawn from 18 departments across 8 schools at UCLA – as they conduct cannabis-related research, education, and advocacy projects spanning “seed to society.”
Outside of UCLA, Dr. Chen engages a wide variety of stakeholders to influence policy, impact business practices, and educate the public, ranging from providing expert opinion to the U.S. House of Representatives Judicial Committee, to advising Colorado Governor Jonathan Hickenlooper, to conducting educational campaigns with athletes, like Matt Barnes and entertainers like Jonathan Van Ness.
He has extensively traveled the world speaking about cannabis – from teaching the country of Colombia’s first cannabis course for doctors, to traveling to the Kingdom of Bhutan to present on cannabis to the Royal Family, to giving the keynote talk at Cannatech Hong Kong – Asia’s first cannabis investment summit. He is known for breaking down complex concepts into digestible content, and his engaging and entertain speaking style stems from his eight years performing as a singer, which brought him to performances at venues ranging from Carnegie Hall to the Vatican.
Despite being one of the youngest leaders of a major university research effort in America, Dr. Chen is a world-recognized expert on the policy, business, and science of cannabis, hemp, and CBD, and his engaging and entertaining speaking style makes for an unforgettable and insightful experience.