Former US senator Mike Gravel has been appointed as the head of cannabis company Kush, which produces marijuana products for recreational and medicinal use, its parent company said Tuesday.
Gravel will be in charge of marketing marijuana products, including a cannabis lozenge called "Kubby," Cannabis Sativa said.
Marijuana is still an illegal drug across much of the United States, but some states have begun to decriminalize its use, sometimes for medical purposes but also in some cases for recreation.
Nevada-based Kush is a subsidiary of Cannabis Sativa, but will now operate independently under Gravel, who has been a director at the company since it was founded.
"I'm anxious to assist in bringing this important resource to a broader market in a serious and credible way," Gravel said.
Gravel, 84, served as Democratic senator in Alaska from 1969 to 1981 and was a candidate in the 2008 presidential elections.
He was a vocal critic of the Vietnam War and the "War on Drugs," waged by former president Richard Nixon in the 1970s.
Cannabis Sativa praised Gravel's new role and said his previous advocacy will be valuable at the company.
"Senator Gravel stood up to Nixon, stood up to the Pentagon, and now he is standing up to those in power who would keep the healthful benefits of cannabis from those who need them," said Steve Kubby, chairman of Sativa's board.
Kubby said Gravel "brings invaluable perspective and connections to our group. He's a true American hero and we're excited to have him serving in this capacity."
Cannabis Sativa, run by former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson, produces several natural pot products, including marijuana-laced foodstuffs.
According to its website, the company believes "cannabis is destined to become the next gold rush and we're prepared to shape its future in a legal environment ."