About The Program

Executive Leadership

Social Equity Program Director Dr. Imani Brown

Dr Imani Brown

Dr. Imani Brown is an urban policy and planning professional with more than 25 years’ experience in the areas of public policy, sustainable urban land use, government relations, and small business development. She currently is the Social Equity Program Director for the Department of Cannabis Regulation for the City of Los Angeles. Her programs’ focus is Business, Licensing, Compliance and Technical Assistance, Grants, Pro Bono & Low Bono Legal Services and equity centered policy reform.

She was a Managing Partner at Granite Equities, LLC a sustainable urban infill property redevelopment company.

Dr. Brown was formerly the Executive Director of External Partnerships of Government & Civic Engagement at USC, where she assisted in developing the Community Benefits Agreement for University Village, a multi-billion dollar economic development project. As Associate Vice President of University & Government Relations at California State University Dominguez Hills, she contributed to the negotiations of the Stub Hub Sports Arena (Currently Dignity Health Sports Park). She served as Chief Deputy of Small Business, Transportation and Housing for the late Congresswoman Juanita Millender-McDonald of the 37th Congressional District, where she created small business incubators and opportunities for communities impacted by the Alameda Corridor Project. She has negotiated multi-million dollar professional services contracts and co-founded The Vendor Relations Department for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

Dr. Brown is an alumni of the University of Maryland and Cornell University. She earned her doctorate degree in 2009 from the University of Southern California, Sol Price School of Public Policy. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband Maynard Brown.

Business, Licensing and Compliance Assistance

Programming to Directly Assist Social Equity Entrepreneurs in Launching a Commercial Cannabis Business in Los Angeles

DCR has selected five vendors to provide targeted programming to Social Equity entrepreneurs interested in launching a commercial cannabis business in Los Angeles. This online programming will cover: State and Local licensing Requirements, Commercial Cannabis Regulations, Cannabis Specific Business Development & Workforce Development, General Business Development, Cannabis Technology Business Development Services Education.

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About the Department

The Department of Cannabis Regulation (DCR) is responsible for administering the commercial cannabis licensing and regulatory program established by the Los Angeles City Council. Specifically, DCR processes all applications for commercial cannabis licenses in the City of Los Angeles, makes licensing decisions or licensing recommendations to the Cannabis Regulation Commission, and regulates the operations of licensed commercial cannabis businesses in the City.


Measure M, passed by over 80% of voters in March 2017, gave the City Council the full authority to regulate cannabis-related activity within the City of Los Angeles. With that authority, the Department of Cannabis Regulation was established by ordinance on July 30, 2017.