Ballot opponent to head legal pot commission
State treasurer taps former Bain executive as chair of regulatory board
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE
A RETIRED BUSINESS executive and former Bain and Company partner who voted against the referendum to legalize marijuana has been tapped by Treasurer Deborah Goldberg to chair the new Cannabis Control Commission and lead the state’s efforts to get a recreational pot industry off the ground by next summer.
Steven Hoffman, a 64-year-old Lincoln resident, was named by Goldberg Thursday as her pick to lead the CCC. He joins Sen. Jennifer Flanagan on the five-member board with an additional pick from Attorney General Maura Healey and two consensus picks by the treasurer, attorney general and governor expected by Friday.
Hoffman voted against Question 4, according to Treasury officials. Flanagan also voted against the ballot question.
He has also worked as CEO at ThinkFire and Exchange Solutions, was the executive vice president and chief strategy officer at Sapient, and led the Chicago office and the Global Strategy Practice as a Senior Vice President at CSC Index.
“Steven brings a wealth of invaluable experience from a long and distinguished career in business development, corporate strategy and senior management. I am confident that he will serve the Commonwealth well and steer this brand-new industry in the right direction,” Goldberg said in a statement.
The treasurer’s appointee, under the law rewriting the 2016 ballot question legalizing adult marijuana use, was required to have corporate management, finance, or securities experience. Hoffman will serve a five-term and earn roughly $160,000.
Hoffman has a degree in economics from Wesleyan University and a graduate business degree in finance and statistics from the University of Chicago.
“I hope to guide this Commission thoughtfully and responsibly as we implement the legalization of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts. We have a lot to do, I am excited to get to work,” Hoffman said in a statement released by Goldberg’s office. He was not immediately available for an interview.Jim Borghesani, a spokesman for the ballot question campaign, praised Hoffman’s financial background but expressed concern that the first two appointees to the commission are opponents.
“The unnecessarily restrictive qualification language for the chair posed a hurdle for Treasurer Goldberg, but she seems to have selected a chair with impressive credentials,” Borghesani said in an emailed statement. “However, we are concerned that a second legalization opponent now sits on the Commission and we hope for balance in the remaining appointments. We hope those appointments are made on time and that the (commission) receives the funding necessary to achieve its regulatory and timeline objectives.”