NORML regrets the passing of Steve Fox, a longtime marijuana policy advocate and strategist.

Steve Fox spent the better part of the past two decades leading both statewide and federal policy reform efforts during his tenure at various organizations, including the Marijuana Policy Project, SAFER (Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation) – a group he cofounded in 2005 – and Vincente Sederberg LLP. In 2009, Fox co-authored the book Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink? (Chlesea Green Press), along with NORML’s Deputy Director Paul Armentano and Mason Tvert. Later, he was the key drafter and proponent behind the historic Amendment 64 initiative campaign in Colorado, which legalized the adult-use marijuana market in 2012 and ushered in the wave of statewide legalization efforts that continues to this day.

“Steve’s vision helped to transform the mainstream narrative surrounding cannabis,” said NORML’s Paul Armentano. “That transformation played a major role in the policy successes we enjoy today, and it will continue to pay dividends going forward. His efforts and his prescience will be sorely missed.”

In a statement issued by VS Strategies and Vincente Sederberg LLP, his colleagues said: “Steve was always thinking step ahead of the rest. Long before cannabis was legalized, he envisioned a legal, organized, and responsible cannabis industry. He played leading roles in conceptualizing and establishing several of the nation’s largest and most influential cannabis trade organizations, including the National Cannabis Industry Association, the Cannabis Trade Federation, and the U.S. Cannabis Council.”

They added: “Steve’s role in cannabis community cannot be overstated. He was a trailblazer in the movement to end prohibition, and he was an architect and caretaker of the legal industry that is quickly replacing it. He beat the path, built the shelter, and worked tirelessly to make it as welcoming, accessible and beneficial as possible. He always put the mission—the wellbeing of others and the betterment of society—ahead of himself.”

NORML offers its condolences to the family and friends of Steve Fox.