CMI 2020 Annual Report


Learn more about the work of the Center for Media Innovation at Point Park University during 2019-2020. If you want to be the first to know what's happening at the CMI, sign up for our monthly email newsletters:


‘Among Neighbors’ seeks

to spark conversation on

race, power and privilege


The Healing Center launches

medical marijuana podcast

By Nick Ruffolo

By Tyler Polk

Screenshot by Tyler Polk

The Among Neighbors Podcast is a

collaboration between YWCA Greater Pittsburgh

and the Point Park Center for Media


The name of the podcast “Among Neighbors”

comes from the CMI sharing the same

building with the YWCA since its inception.

Andy Conte, the Director of the CMI, and

Barbara Johnson, the Senior Director of

Race and Gender Equity at YWCA Greater

Pittsburgh, are the hosts of this podcast.

The premise of the podcast is to have discussions

about race, power, and privilege

in the Pittsburgh region.

“People are always afraid to talk about

race,” Johnson said. “That was the

inspiration of this podcast, creating an

opportunity to have a person of color

and a white person to have honest


Conte and Johnson will have on guests

to talk about a variety of subjects from

Black people in the media, language,

housing, education, and law enforcement.

“Having guests on the podcast is what

I’m looking forward to the most,” Conte

said. “Having conversations like this

with Barbara, really encouraged us to

start this podcast.”

The goal of Among Neighbors is to create a

space where people in Pittsburgh can share

their experiences, have a conversation and

find solutions to racial issues in Pittsburgh.

Photo by Nick Ruffolo

When The Healing Center reached

out to the Center for Media Innovation,

its workers searched for more than

just a podcast.

They wanted to make a difference.

Even before the Medical Marijuana Act was

signed into law in 2016, Co-Founders Chris

Kohan and Jay Richards were campaigning

for innovation.

Several years later they found innovation

at the CMI.

Bi-weekly the THC team sits behind the

microphone to talk about the history of

medical cannabis and what it can do to

help patients that previously could not find


For example, host Mike Flick, Kohan, Richards

and Pharmacist/General Manager Dr. Michael

Butler all shared stories of patients prescribed

double-digit amounts of opioids, only to

find relief with the correct medical cannabis

treatment plan.

This aspect of healing led to the dispensary’s

name and the name for the podcast, “Healing


Screenshot by Tyler Polk

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