Terry Donnell Gwinn can celebrate becoming the first business to be licensed as a medical marijuana operator in Florida — and it’s long overdue.

Orlando Sentinel reports the license was granted to the Black farmer by The Department of Health of Medical Marijuana Use. Gwinn was one of 12 individuals who put in an application for approval back in March before becoming the last man standing.

“Mr. Gwinn is very pleased that his application was selected for licensure and is grateful for the hard work by the Florida Department of Health, Office of Medical Marijuana Use, to complete the review of the applications received. He looks forward to working with the office to complete the final steps to licensure,” Gwinn’s attorney, Jim McKee, said in a statement, according to Orlando Sentinel.

The good news is well deserved as he has been on standby for quite some time.

Florida Politics reports the farmer was a part of a group — the Pigford Class — who once sued the U.S. Department of Agriculture for their allocation of farmland between the 1980s to 1990s.

In 2017, the Legislature approved the measure to grant one medical marijuana license. However, a lawsuit challenging the law stifled the process. Therefore, a resolution was never reached until 2021.

With Gwinn’s victory, there is hope that the number of medical marijuana operators could potentially double in the future.


“To say this has been a long time coming is more than an understatement,” said the Vice President of the Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida, Taylor Biehl, according to Florida Politics. “It is our hope that the Department will move forward with opening an application window for the remaining 22 licenses available for bid, given the Supreme Court’s ruling 14 months ago. Irrespective of any legal challenges that may arise from the Pigford application, we believe the Department will move forward.”