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Lansing — A familiar face in the marijuana industry will lead Michigan’s new marijuana regulatory arm.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday named Andrew Brisbo executive director of the Marijuana Regulatory Agency.

The 38-year-old East Lansing resident currently serves as director of the Bureau of Marijuana Regulation and has been at the forefront of the state’s efforts to regulate the medical marijuana market and prepare for the adult use marijuana industry.

“Andrew will be critical in determining and achieving solutions as we develop new Marijuana regulations in Michigan,” Whitmer said in a statement. “He brings a wealth of expert knowledge on this subject, which will be essential through this implementation process while protecting Michigan residents.”  

Brisbo's appointment is subject to the advice and consent of the Senate. 

The Michigan Cannabis Industry Association called Brisbo a "smart, sound" choice for the position, noting his experience and history with the marijuana industry. 

“Mr. Brisbo has consistently demonstrated a willingness to listen to input with an open ear as we collectively work toward establishing logical and practical rules and regulations that will continue to shape the emerging cannabis industry," said Josh Hovey, the association's spokesman.

Brisbo previously served as a licensing division director for the state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, a branch manager for the Michigan Secretary of State and a regulation officer with the Michigan Gaming Control Board.

Whitmer said in early March that she would abolish the Bureau of Marijuana Regulation and the cumbersome Medical Marihuana Licensing Board and replace them with the Marijuana Regulatory Agency, which will oversee laws related to medical and recreational marijuana “to more efficiently regulate” the products.

Whitmer’s executive order takes effect on April 30.

Brisbo will be required to submit annual financial disclosures and refrain from taking a job with a financial interest in an applicant, licensee or marijuana establishment for four years after he leaves the executive director post, according to Whitmer’s order.

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