Roger A. Roffman

Author: Roger A. Roffman

Roger A. Roffman, DSW, is a Professor Emeritus of Social Work at the University of Washington and the founding director (1985) of the School’s Innovative Programs Research Group. With funding from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment over a twenty-five year period, he and his colleagues conducted a series of outcome trials of behavioral interventions tailored for marijuana dependent adults. This team also designed and studied motivational enhancement therapy interventions for adult and adolescent marijuana smokers who have concerns about their use but are ambivalent about making a commitment to change.

Roger’s book, Marijuana Nation: One Man’s Chronicle of America Getting High: From Vietnam to Legalization is on

Roger grew up in Massachusetts, completed undergraduate studies at Boston University and then went on to complete graduate work at the University of Michigan and the University of California at Berkeley. He joined the University of Washington faculty in 1972.

Roger first became a marijuana policy activist in the 1970s, initially focusing on decriminalizing marijuana possession by adults. Also in the 1970s, he helped write a bill that established a state-wide medical marijuana research program in Washington State. In 2012, he was a co-sponsor of Initiative 502, a voter-approved measure in Washington to regulate and tax marijuana.

With his wife, Cheryl Richey, Roger lives in Seattle. He retired from the University of Washington faculty in October of 2009.
  • University of Michigan; University of California at Berkeley
  • Professor Emeritus of Social Work at the University of Washington; Founding Director (1985) of the School’s Innovative Programs Research Group
  • Marijuana Dependence Behavioral Intervention Researcher and Marijuana Policy Activist
Marijuana Killed My Soul and Ruined My Brain
What are you willing to give up in order to keep using or drinking?

Should our laws acknowledge and meaningfully address marijuana’s potential harms by investing new tax revenues in science-based public education?

Compassionate Populism on the Road to Rediscovering Cannabis as Medicine

As the reputation of medical cannabis among cancer patients grows, so does its acceptance among medical professionals and government officials.

Cannabis Crossroads: I Wish You Had Stayed

Standing up and putting on your coat, your departing comment was, “I’m not going to listen to this. You can’t get addicted to marijuana.” I’m sorry you didn’t stick around.

Is the Road to Legalization Paved with Risk for the Heavy User?

The claims are made, both stridently and with certainty. Marijuana is not addictive. Marijuana is not a gateway drug. But, how are these words interpreted?

He Changed His Mind About Marijuana Laws. Why?

TV personality Art Linkletter’s 20 year-old daughter committed suicide in 1969. He believed she was experiencing an LSD flashback when she jumped from a window.

When the Price of Prohibition Became Questionable

As the momentum away from marijuana prohibition gains strength, my memory of what happened to a 24-year-old soldier from Ohio keeps a key question in my mind.

Legal Marijuana: When the Issue is Personal

For many if not most addiction and recovery professionals, the notion that marijuana ought to be legal is difficult to swallow. Laws that permit legal access to marijuana are…