Walz appoints Minnesota’s first Office of Cannabis Management Director

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(ABC 6 News) – The Walz administration appointed Erin DuPree, a hemp business owner, as the first director of the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) on Sept. 21.

Gov. Tim Walz said in a statement that DuPree will build the new state agency beginning Oct. 2. The OCM will help establish and regulate the new adult-use cannabis market within Minnesota.

DuPree is the founder, vice president of sales and operations and head of research and development at Loonacy Cannabis Co., a hemp derived product shop based in Apple Valley.

The statement states that DuPree has led “research on hemp-derived and cannabis products.”

“Erin emerged early as a leading candidate as we considered a wide range of qualified individuals for this important new leadership role,” said Charlene Briner, who led the search and early implementation work for the new Office of Cannabis Management. “Her experience, credibility, and passion for ensuring the success of Minnesota’s new cannabis industry made her a stand-out among an extraordinary pool of talented candidates. I have no doubt those qualities will serve her well as she carries out her work in the months ahead.”

Minnesota became the 23rd state to legalize adult-use cannabis after Walz signed legislation on May 30.