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September 15, 2023

Chair of Cannabis Control Commission suspended

A woman wearing glasses, smiling Photo | Courtesy of Shannon O'Brien Shannon O'Brien, chair of the Cannabis Control Commission until her suspension in Sept.

Shannon O’Brien, chair of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, has been suspended from her role.

The suspension went into effect on Thursday, said Andrew Napolitano, director of communications for the Office of State Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, who confirmed the suspension to the WBJ Friday.

Napolitano was not able to provide information about the reason for her suspension, nor the expected timeframe for the suspension.

This news was first reported by Grant Smith-Ellis on his Twitter account.

In July, O’Brien told commissioners at the CCC that executive director Shawn Collins would be leaving his role, stating the commission was in crisis. O’Brien subsequently apologized for the confusion, and on Sept. 7, Collins stated he does not have definitive plans to permanently leave the position he still holds.

O’Brien was selected as CCC chair by Goldberg in August 2022. A former treasurer for the state, O’Brien served six years in the Massachusetts House and two years in the Massachusetts Senate.

A spokesperson from the CCC was not able to provide information about O’Brien’s status with the Cannabis Control Commission on Friday morning. 

The offices of the CCC are located in Worcester within Union Station.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article incorrectly said the Boston Globe was the first media outlet to report the news of Shannon O'Brien's suspension. Grant Smith-Ellis, who follows the Cannabis Control Commission closely on his Patreon, broke the news on his Twitter account.

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September 17, 2023

"This news was first reported by Grant Smith-Ellis." Respectfully....was it? Smith-Ellis reported that O'Brien would be fired on Wednesday. We found out on Friday that she had been suspended. Those are two entirely different things.

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