Peter Lewis, Advocate Of MJ Legalization, Dies 
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Peter Lewis, Advocate Of MJ Legalization, Dies 
Posted by CN Staff on November 24, 2013 at 07:10:48 PT
By Luisa Kroll, Forbes Staff 
Source: Forbes
USA -- Peter Lewis, chairman of Progressive Insurance, died on Saturday afternoon at his home in Coconut Grove Florida apparently due to natural causes. He had just celebrated his 80th birthday on November 11.Lewis was probably the country’s most high-profile billionaire backer of drug law reform. During the November 2012 election, he spent almost $3 million helping secure the passage of marijuana legalization bills in both Washington state and Massachusetts. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws estimated that Lewis had spent well over $40 million funding the cause since the 1980s.
“Our marijuana laws are outdated, ineffective and stupid,” Lewis told Forbes in a 2011 interview. “I am a progressive by birth, by nature, by philosophy—that’s the name of the insurance company I ran as well, which is coincidental—but I am a small ‘p’ progressive. I don’t believe that laws against things that people do regularly, like safe and responsible use of marijuana, make any sense. “Lewis also had a personal reason for publicly backing marijuana. The Ohio native, who says he first tried marijuana at age 39, used the drug to combat pain from a partial amputation he had at age 64 on his left leg due to an incurable infection.A Princeton grad, he started out as an underwriter at Progressive, which his father founded, in 1955. He took over 10 years later and remained CEO until 2000. At the time of his death, his net worth was over $1.3 billion, the majority of which was tied up in Progressive’s stock.Lewis joined the Giving Pledge in 2012, signing off his letter to Bill Gates and Warren Buffett with: “Take care of yourselves. Stay well and happy. Joy, Love and Peace.” An art enthusiast, Lewis owned 6,500 pieces of art. He had donated $100 million to Princeton’s arts programs and last year announced a $5 million gift to the Cleveland Institute of Art in 2012, his first big donation toward his city’s revitalization in ten years. The Daily Princentonian said that Lewis donated hundreds of millions to Princeton during his lifetime and had several buildings including the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics named after him.According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Lewis is survived by Rosel and by his brother, Daniel Lewis, of Coconut Grove; daughter Ivy Lewis, of Princeton, N.J.; sons Adam Joseph Lewis, of Aspen, Col. and Jonathan Lewis of Coconut Grove; his ex-wife, Toby Devan Lewis; and five grandchildren.Source: Forbes Magazine (US)Author: Luisa Kroll, Forbes Staff Published: November 24, 2013Copyright: 2013 Forbes Inc.Contact: readers forbes.comWebsite: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #9 posted by Had Enough on December 05, 2013 at 20:23:55 PT
Peter Lewis…
Peter Lewis…I’ve had insurance from him since the early 1980’s…once I discovered that he was helping to change these insane reefer madness laws…I stayed with him regardless of other offers and efforts from other insurance companies…I wouldn’t even give them very much airtime…and by the way…Progressive is reasonably priced…and had very little issues with his company…I still use that company…Three years ago they cut my policy cost almost in half…with comparable coverage…Rest in Paradise Peter Lewis…and thanks for your efforts…
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Comment #8 posted by The GCW on November 25, 2013 at 22:07:53 PT
What does it look like when the sky falls in?
It looks like this:US CO: Editorial: Recreational Pot Sales Would Become Manitou's Big Regret
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Comment #7 posted by The GCW on November 25, 2013 at 21:45:33 PT
Opening soon
More than 100 recreational-marijuana shops in line to open in Colorado
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Comment #6 posted by Hope on November 24, 2013 at 16:47:49 PT
He helped the peaceful revolution
that has started changing some seriously unjust laws. He helped spread the word.I remember when he got busted in New Zealand. That was a while ago.
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on November 24, 2013 at 16:44:46 PT
He made things happen for this effort
that we just couldn't afford to make happen without his financial and influential contributions. He stood up. He said, "Wait a minute." And he made public statements and appearances and put some of his wealth into giving people the opportunity to vote about it.He did a lot of good. He made his voice heard.
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Comment #4 posted by The GCW on November 24, 2013 at 15:46:45 PT
Holy thank You
"Lewis had spent well over $40 million funding the cause"Peter Lewis made a lot happen. He made a big difference. The movement to end cannabis prohibition would not be where it is without His generosity.  Some of the important election ballots would not have taken place without His help.
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Comment #3 posted by Hope on November 24, 2013 at 13:09:46 PT
He helped a lot.
Rest in peace, Mr. Lewis.
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on November 24, 2013 at 07:23:41 PT
Peter Lewis, we owe you a lot!
Thank you for all that you have done for our movement!It would have been different, without your great help over the years!Now all your efforts have been rewarded, rest peacefully and smile down on us.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on November 24, 2013 at 07:15:16 PT
RIP Mr. Lewis
You will always be remembered by me for all you have done to advance marijuana law reform.
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