Ms. Burns became passionate about pursuing a legal career in the cannabis industry while attending Vanderbilt Law School, as she had the opportunity to enroll in one of the nation’s first Marijuana Law and Policy courses, taught by leading marijuana law and policy scholar, Professor Robert Mikos. She also assisted with writing a first-of-its-kind casebook entitled, “Marijuana Law, Policy, and Authority,” acquiring in-depth knowledge of the various state regulations governing cannabis consumers, producers, and other third parties.
Prior to joining Offit Kurman, Ms. Burns worked for a boutique marijuana business law firm in Portland, Oregon. Her work ranged from helping clients navigate Canadian and US laws governing cross-border securities transactions, including those involving marijuana-related businesses, to preparing written testimony for local land use hearings on behalf of individuals seeking OLCC processor licenses, and drafting FDA-compliant disclaimers for CBD and Industrial-Hemp-derived products in the absence of specific FDA guidance on the issue. Ms. Burns has also completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Maryland School of Law, where her work focused on the regulation of cannabis and tobacco in the context of public health policy.
In addition to cannabis-related work, Ms. Burns has extensive knowledge of legal and policy issues related to climate change, renewable energy generation, and general environmental matters. Prior to pursuing her J.D. at Vanderbilt, Ms. Burns was actively involved in state and local politics and policymaking, volunteering in numerous capacities, and working as a full-time legislative analyst during the 2012 Maryland General Assembly.