Denise B. McCracken

Attorney at Law

Founder of D.B. McCracken Law

  • University of Notre Dame Law School, J.D. 1996
  • University of Kansas, B.A. 1991

Bar Admissions
  • Missouri, 2016
  • Illinois, 1996

Photo: Rocio Martinez
Photo: Rocio Martinez

Denise B. McCracken is the founder and owner of the cannabis law firm, D.B. McCracken Law in St. Louis, Missouri. Ms. McCracken represents licensees and third-party service providers in a variety of cannabis-related matters such as compliance, contracts, Missouri constitutional and regulatory policy, variances and change requests, and licensure. She authored Missouri Cannabis Laws and Regulations, 2020 when medical marijuana was legalized in 2018 and has published an e-book 2023 edition that includes the 2022 passage of adult use (also called “recreational”) cannabis by a majority of Missouri voters. The e-book currently reflects the “emergency rules” in place from Missouri's Department of Health and Senior Services, which are in place until final rules are published.

After graduating from Notre Dame Law School and successfully practicing in New York and Chicago, Denise found her way back home. She opened a law office in St. Louis where her parents, amazing nephew, and three fabulous nieces also live and she and her dog, consider St Louis home. Since 2016, Ms. McCracken has been immersed in the cannabis industry and the extensive regulatory and compliance work that operators must navigate. In 2018, Ms. McCracken created a website to help Missouri voters better understand the three medical marijuana ballot initiatives using neutral, fact-based infographics and easy-to-read comparison charts. From its launch in late August 2018 to election day, there were over 10,000 visitors. In the early stages of the medical marijuana passage, Denise founded D.B. McCracken Law to serve the body of regulatory and compliance needs of Missouri's new medical cannabis industry. In a more mature market, the services provided by D.B. McCracken Law are now within the D.B. McCracken Law umbrella. Denise B. McCracken was voted Missouri's best marijuana industry lawyer by Greenway Magazine in 2022 and 2023.

Ms. McCracken brings two decades of litigation and transactional legal experience in matters governed by local, state, and federal law on behalf of public bodies, private individuals, and businesses. Areas of her practice that involved significant regulatory oversight include cannabis, school, and special education law. She appeared in federal, state, and administrative proceedings and continues to present on webinars and in-person conferences. McCracken also devoted six years to non-profit services as a grant manager with responsibilities in program evaluation, strategic development, grant writing, and reporting. Her experience, versatility, tenacity, and integrity make Ms. McCracken an asset to her clients and the evolving cannabis industry.

Trade Organization Memberships

Publications & Press

  • Missouri Cannabis Laws and Regulations 2023 - coming soon
  • Three-part series on Missouri's Adult Use Amendment, The Evolution Magazine, Aug to Oct 2022
  • Microbusiness Licenses: An Opportunity to Enter Missouri's Cannabis Industry
  • The Good Stuff Explained: Missouri Marijuana “Adult Use” Initiative Details for Consumers and Home-Growers
  • Fully Automatic, Semi-Automatic, and Manual Expungement
  • 20 Ones to Watch 2020, Greenway, July/August 2020
  • Missouri Cannabis Laws and Regulations 2020, self-published
  • Guidance letter inspires noteworthy forethought to licensees, Greenway, February 11, 2020
  • CannaOutsider, website outlining Nov. 2018 medical marijuana ballot initiatives, Sept. to Nov. 2018.

Speaking Engagements

  • Blaze: Missouri Brand Showcase, Key Panel Moderator, June 3, 2022
  • Security Compliance, MoCannTrade Member Meetup Webinar, July 2020
  • Ethical Considerations for Medical Marijuana Attorneys, CLE: Representing Clients in Missouri's New Medical Marijuana Industry, Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis (BAMSL), February 13, 2020
  • Cannabis Roundtable, Heartland States Idea Exchange, ICSC, February 4, 2020
  • Compliance: Missouri and Illinois Cannabis Testing Facilities, Cannabis & Hemp
  • Symposium: Tools and Techniques to Ensure Product Quality and Safety presented by Shimadzu, September 26, 2019
  • A Topline Overview on Important Compliance Considerations for Facility Operators, MoCannTrade Member Meetups, July 8, 10-11, 2019
Need a regulatory compliance professional for your cannabis business?

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