Catarina Riggi is a writer born and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where she developed an interest in growing plants and herbal medicine from her mother. She later attended James Madison University as a student of Biology and Writing, Rhetoric, and Technical Communication. During her time as an undergraduate microbiology researcher, Catarina isolated and named a new bacteria phage (virus) from planting soil. Her findings were published in the Journal Genome Announcements, where they have since been used to better understand the anthrax-like symptoms that can occur in agricultural workers exposed to phages in large quantities.
As a researcher, Catarina developed a passion for cultivating understanding and explaining complex subject matter to others, which lead her to become a University Writing Tutor. During Catarina’s time as a tutor she provided quality learning experiences to students by tailoring her communication style to the needs of peers, professors, adult learners, and intellectually disabled learners alike. Through tutoring, she learned to put a wide range of topics into terms meaningful to clients without sacrificing the accuracy or integrity of the information. Catarina also brings years of experience producing written materials appropriate for different target audiences, purposes and tasks. The documents she produced and edited for the James Madison University pharmacy and her family’s small contracting business contributed to the launch and ongoing sustainability of both organizations.
Catarina moved to Denver in 2016 to become part of the DRC team and establish herself as an activist for the legal cannabis revolution. She hopes to combine her creative and analytical thinking to encourage sensible drug policy reform and widespread legal access to plant medicine. Educating the public on cannabis safety and up-to-date research is of utmost importance to Catarina. She will work hard to dispel negative false stereotypes about the cannabis industry as well as participate in philanthropy for the betterment of the local community.