Governor appoints Sheriff Cole to state marijuana advisory panel.

October 17, 2017

Sheriff Kim Cole

Governor appoints Sheriff Cole to state marijuana advisory panel.

LANSING – Gov. Rick Snyder announced last week that Mason County Sheriff Kim Cole has been appointed to the Marihuana Advisory Panel established by the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act (marihauana is an alternative spelling of marijuana).

Housed within the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, the 17-member Panel was created to make recommendations to the Department and to the Medical Marihuana Licensing Board concerning the administration, implementation, and enforcement of the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act and the Marihuana Tracking Act.

“These individuals come from a range of backgrounds and I am confident their combined experiences will allow them to positively contribute to this panel,” Snyder said.

“It is truly is an honor being selected to represent the sheriffs of Michigan on this very important council,” Sheriff Cole said. “Michigan is blessed to have many great sheriffs serving throughout the state and to be chosen to serve in this capacity is very humbling.  I promise to represent them to the best of my ability.”

Cole is currently serving his second term as the sheriff of Mason County. He has more than 30 years of law enforcement experience and holds an associate’s degree in criminal justice from West Shore Community College. He will represent sheriffs.

James Berlin of Warren is chief of the Roseville Police Department where he has served in various positions since graduating from the Macomb Police Academy in 1982. He will represent local police.

Alan Helmkamp of Livonia is the director of commission affairs for Wayne County. He was previously an assistant county executive and served as an attorney in private practice. Helmkamp holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and pre-law from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Wayne State University Law School. He will represent counties.

Catherine Kaufman of South Haven is a partner at the municipal law firm of Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber & Kaufman, P.C.  Kaufman holds a bachelor’s degree in urban policy from James Madison College, a master’s degree in urban planning from the University of Michigan, and a law degree from Wayne State University Law School. She will represent townships.

Saqib Nakadar is the medical director of Doc Greens Clinic, focusing on internal medicine and the use of medical cannabis. Nakadar holds a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Wayne State University and a doctor of osteopathic medicine from Michigan State University. He will represent licensed physicians.

Paul Samways of Pinckney is a managing partner at Cannabis Accounting. He is the national director of the Bridge West Network and a certified public accountant providing accounting services for medical marihuana businesses. Samways holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Arizona State University and a master’s degree in accounting from Walsh College. He will represent registered medical marihuana patients.

Suzanne Schulz of Grand Rapids is the planning director and the managing director of design, development, and community engagement for the city of Grand Rapids. Schulz holds an associate’s degree from Northwest Community College and a bachelor’s degree in urban and regional planning from Michigan State University. She will represent cities and villages.

Additional Members of the Panel:

  • Director of the Michigan State Police or their designee
  • Director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services or their designee
  • Director of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs or their designee
  • Attorney General of their designee
  • Director of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development or their designee

The remaining members appointed by the Governor shall represent licensed growers, processors, provisioning centers, safety compliance facilities, and secure transporters, and will be considered for appointment once licensing takes effect.

Appointed members will serve three-year terms expiring Dec. 20, 2019.

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