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About Elizabeth Patty-Lugo

Liza Patty was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. After high school she was awarded a scholarship to attend the University of Colorado at Boulder for music to pursue a bachelor’s degree in tuba performance. During undergraduate school she won numerous performing awards and received many academic accolades. During her freshman year at CU she began work as an at home therapist for children with autism. Passionate about helping others, she continued working as an autism therapist in the Denver area for the remainder of undergraduate school. After graduating with honors, Liza accepted a full graduate teaching assistant to Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida to pursue a master’s degree in music. Liza maintained a very rigorous practicing and performing schedule at FSU, in addition to making the Dean’s List every semester. After receiving a master’s a music in performance in 2008, Liza wanted to fuse her love of music with her love of helping people with developmental disabilities and she decided to continue her education by pursuing a Master’s of Music Therapy at FSU, the premier music therapy program in the world. At the beginning of that degree Liza’s life changed forever when her best friend, Rachel Hoffman, was murdered during a botched police buy/bust operation. It was during that challenging time in her life she began to speak out on a national level about injustice regarding the use of confidential informants. She has been featured on Dateline, 20/20, NORML’s podcast, The Tallahassee Democrat and Cannabis Culture magazine. Today, she lives in Denver, works at a law firm, and continues to play tuba.

Posts by Elizabeth Patty-Lugo:

Reform Report: Second Annual Southern Cannabis Reform Conference in Atlanta

Reform Report: Second Annual Southern Cannabis Reform Conference in Atlanta

The 2nd annual Southern Cannabis Reform conference was held in Atlanta on March 22nd.  The South is often thought of as caboose of cannabis reform; however, there are still positive strides in reform being made in Georgia and though out the southern United States. Activists in the South face extreme social and political conservatism when […]

Lady Business: Colorado Growhouse Realtor Rona Hanson

Lady Business: Colorado Growhouse Realtor Rona Hanson

Image: Vanessa Waltz/Silverkind Cannabis Jewelry Rona Hanson is Colorado’s next real estate agent.  Her company specializes in finding properties where people can safely grow marijuana in Colorado; her slogan is “Need Room to Grow?” Although marijuana has been legalized in Colorado for both recreational and medicinal purposes and state residents are legally allowed to grow marijuana, there […]

The First Time I Smoked K2 Spice I Thought I Was Going To Die

The First Time I Smoked K2 Spice I Thought I Was Going To Die

I have seen a definitive increase in the number of stories in the mainstream media in the last few months about people using synthetic marijuana and experiencing frightening and sometimes fatal reactions. This week it was reported that three people in Colorado died recently after smoking synthetic marijuana, and up to 75 hospitalizations have been […]

My Best Friend Rachel Hoffman Was Murdered At 23-Years-Old

My Best Friend Rachel Hoffman Was Murdered At 23-Years-Old

Pictures courtesy of Elizabeth Patty-Lugo and the Hoffman family unless otherwise noted. I was less than one mile south and about five minutes away from my best friend when she was shot point-blank five times with the gun she was ordered by police to purchase. Rachel Hoffman had been a confidential informant with the Tallahassee […]

Know Your Rights: Supreme Court Rules Police Need Warrant To Use Drug Sniffing Dogs

Know Your Rights: Supreme Court Rules Police Need Warrant To Use Drug Sniffing Dogs

According to Black’s Legal Dictionary, probable cause is defined as; “a reasonable ground to suspect that a person has committed or is committing a crime…more than a bare suspicion but less than evidence that would justify a conviction [it] must be shown before an arrest warrant or search warrant may be issued.” The part of […]