Denver marijuana policy office gets more entrenched in city’s operations
Ashley Kilroy joins Mayor Michael Hancock’s cabinet; move puts cannabis regulation department in permanent home
November 1, 2016
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock on Monday announced a reshuffling that will merge his groundbreaking marijuana policy shop into the Department of Excise and Licenses, with Ashley Kilroy serving as director of both.
The move elevates Kilroy, Hancock’s marijuana policy adviser, to the mayor’s cabinet, succeeding outgoing licensing executive director Stacie Loucks. It also places the Office of Marijuana Policy — created nearly three years ago amid the legalization of recreational marijuana sales — in a permanent home as Denver gets comfortable with regulating the world’s largest recreational marijuana market so far.
Loucks, who has served as licensing director since early 2014, is stepping down Friday to spend more time with her family, including young children, the mayor’s office said. Kilroy starts in the expanded role next Monday.
In a statement, Hancock said Kilroy “has served this great city for a number of years in various capacities, most recently as our navigator in the uncharted waters of legal recreational marijuana. … Ashley has proven to be a steadfast, common-sense leader who builds partnerships and consensus. I’m proud to elevate her skill set and talent to the whole of our city’s business licensing processes.”
The marijuana policy office and licensing department have worked together closely to implement retail cannabis regulations since the sales authorized by Colorado’s Amendment 64 began in January 2014.
As of June, Denver was home to hundreds of recreational and medical marijuana stores, grow facilities, edibles manufacturers and labs at 460 distinct locations. Those included 136 shops offering both medical and retail sales, 64 standalone medical marijuana dispensaries and 13 standalone recreational stores.