New York Cannabis Control Board Gets Appointed in a Hurry by New York’s New Governor
Hochul has hit the ground running! The New York governor has listed the long-awaited nominees to head the newly created cannabis control board.
Tremaine Wright and Christopher Alexander have been chosen by Governor Hochul to serve as The Chairperson and Executive director of the cannabis control board respectively.
Who is Tremaine Wright?
Tremaine Wright is a former assemblywoman who represented Brooklyn. Currently, she works in the New York State Department of Financial Services as the first director of the office of financial inclusion and empowerment.
The former assemblywoman was sworn into office in January 2017. She served for a term at the 56th Assembly district of Brooklyn, New York. She represented her immediate communities, Bedford-Stuyvesant and Northern Crown Heights. During her term, she was appointed to serve as the chairperson of the Assembly Subcommittee on Foster care. In addition to this, she also chaired the Legislative Caucus of Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian lawmakers.
Ms. Wright was the chairwoman of Community Board 3 before she ran for office. Asides from being the chairperson, she also served as Budget Coordinator, Treasurer, and Executive secretary within the space of 13 years. During her service years, Wright ensured she had well-established relationships with all elected officials—past and present. She was also conversant with a lot of community leaders as well as dedicated residents who were committed to making center Brooklyn better.
Wright is a well-respected member of the public. She graduated from Duke University, after which she attended the University of Chicago Law School. She is a second-generation Bedford Stuyvesant resident who works as an attorney, entrepreneur, small business owner.
She worked as an attorney at major law firms while practicing at Brooklyn Legal Services and some private firms. She is also an activist that is invested in building a solid foundation for future generations.
Over the years, Ms. Wright has helped preserve the rich culture of her community while using her career as a politician and attorney to empower and create good opportunities for residents within and around her community. At a point in time, she served as a pro bono lawyer for an incarcerated mother’s project.
When confirmed by the senate, Wright will be the head of all agencies that will be employed to regulate the sales of recreational Cannabis in New York.
Who is Christopher Alexander?
Christopher Alexander is currently employed as the government Relations and Policy Manager at Village. The village is a multi-state cannabis company. His main objective at Village is to relate with lawmakers and policymakers to establish a perfect way for Village to expand its cannabis business within New York.
Alexander is an experienced policymaker. His experience includes; working as a Legislative Aide for the New York State Democratic Party, acting as a counsel to the New York State Senate while he also managed the work of some of the committees that provide oversights on the affairs of the criminal justice system in the state, as well as affairs regarding New York City as a whole. He also served as a policy coordinator for the Drug Policy Alliance.
Alexander is a respected criminal justice reformer and advocate. With his seasoned experience of working in the legislative, he works with other advocates to end mass criminalization in the drug war. Alexander is a well-known New York State advocate for social justice and racial equity. Over the years, the seasoned politico known as Christopher Alexander has become a Champion for civic engagement.
He established the Stuart Smart NY campaign as his contribution to ending the criminalization of cannabis in New York. He is also the lead drafter of the approved marijuana legalization bill in New York, which is also known as the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act.
Alexander’s growth is very much commendable, as he is a son of immigrant parents who relocated to the United States from Grenada. His immediate community is Hollis, Queens.
‘The nomination took less time than expected’
When the governor promised to launch the industry, not many believed she would do so within a month. Hochul has surpassed the expectations of the majority. Reports have it that she may have started considering nominees the moment it became imminent that Cuomo had to step down from office. Regardless of when she started her selection process, what matters is that the industry’s creation has been put in motion.
After the two nominated individuals were confirmed by the Senate, Governor Hochul gave a statement that emphasized how she was fixated on getting New York’s cannabis industry running as swiftly and smoothly as possible.
Hochul said that the NY government had plans to make up for lost time with the immediate confirmation of Wright and Alexander.
Bonus Points for Appointing POC
Governor Hochul also backed her promise of appointing board members from disadvantaged communities. Both Christopher Alexander and Tremaine Wright are black Americans who have experienced the negative impact of the failed war on drugs within the state.
The governor believes both appointees have tons of knowledge that can be applied to making their jobs easier. Hochul added that she trusts Wright and Alexander to do extraordinarily well in outlining and implementing safe, fair, and transparent regulations. “I know they will recognize the need to correct the impact of the drug war in disadvantaged communities”.
Hochul claims that she looks forward to working with all board members, once they have all been confirmed.
The cannabis control board and offices if cannabis management will be able to put in place a comprehensive regulatory framework for all New York communities. They will be in charge of the state’s cannabis industry and will deal with all activities regarding production, licensing, packaging, marketing, and sales of marijuana-derived products.
The next move will be taken by the New York State Senate. Here, they will assess the other nominated members for confirmation. The state senate will also appoint a board member, the state assembly will also do this. New York recreational dispensaries could be open later this year.
Once all confirmations have been done, the process for the implementation of cannabis sales will then begin by the board members.
With Tremaine Wright grading the board and Christopher Alexander serving as executive director of the office of cannabis management, one can only expect great accomplishments from the board.