MMCC Director Joy Strand to Resign – Maryland Medical Cannabis Dispensary

MMCC Director Joy Strand to Resign

The executive director of Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission, the body that regulates the state’s burgeoning marijuana industry, is resigning.

Joy A. Strand announced she will resign effective October 1, after serving 22 months as head of the 16-member regulatory board. She has been on medical leave since August 12, according to Will Tilburg, who will now serve as the commission’s acting executive director.

Tilburg came to the commission in January 2018 as director of policy and government affairs, where he led the commission’s legislative and regulatory efforts.

Strand’s resignation comes as required changes to the makeup of the commission and its membership are set to go into effect.

Under House Bill 2, which was passed by the Maryland General Assembly in 2018, the terms of all 16 existing commissioners will expire on Sept. 30. Although Gov. Larry Hogan may reappoint some commission members, the total number of commissioners who can serve will be reduced from 16 to 13. In addition, the bill eliminates certain professional roles on the commission including representatives of the Office of the Comptroller, law enforcement and the University of Maryland Extension.

Strand’s resignation is not required under House Bill 2, Tilburg said.

She joined the commission on Dec. 1, 2017 — the same day medical cannabis sales began in Maryland. She oversaw huge growth during her nearly two years as executive director. The statewide registered patient cannabis population has now grown to over 100,000, including nearly 300 minors and nearly 400 hospice patients. Retail sales in the industry have grown to $178 million overall, including more than $86 million since the beginning of 2019.

“Joy led the Commission through two years of tremendous growth and success,” said MMCC Chair Brian Lopez in a statement. “Thanks to her leadership the Maryland medical cannabis program is among the nation’s leaders in safety and quality.”


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