New Mexico’s Cannabis Control Division announced Todd Stevens would be taking over as the agency’s new director on August 21, 2023. Stevens was formerly a manager for the Colorado-based cannabis company Native Roots before taking the position. Stevens is the fourth person in about 14 months to fill the role as director with the Cannabis Control Division.
“Director Stevens’s experience as an industry leader made him the ideal candidate to take the lead at the CCD,” Regulation and Licensing Department superintendent Linda Trujillo said in a press release. “I am confident in his ability to lead this team and make New Mexico’s regulated cannabis industry one to rival.”
Stevens had worked with Native Roots since 2015. He is credited with creating onboarding solutions for the company including an interactive classroom and a retail sales training program, as well as managing all employee training and overseeing operations for five Native Roots retail stores.
“In the past year, New Mexico has established a thriving new industry, licensed more than 2,000 cannabis businesses, and held those businesses to the high standard that comes with an adult-use cannabis market,” Stevens said in a press release. “I am committed to building on this success while protecting consumer safety and promoting business practices that help this new industry continue to be a transformational economic driver.”
So far, the Cannabis Control Division has failed to keep a director for longer than eight months. Kristen Thomson, the agency’s first director, departed in June 2022 alongside the division’s compliance manager, Bobbi Martinez, and took jobs with the marijuana consulting firm Weeds. Thomson was followed by Carolina Barrera who resigned in August 2022, and then by Andrew Vallejos who resigned in March 2023.
— Patrick Wagner