C3 announces new president, a former Canopy exec with extensive public service experience

| David Brown

The Cannabis Council of Canada (C3) has appointed a new president, a former executive at Canopy Growth with extensive experience working within the public sector at the federal level. 

Paul McCarthy was announced as the new president of the national Canadian cannabis industry association on April 2, following the former CEO and President, Goerge Smitherman, stepping down in January

“There is great potential for the cannabis sector to flourish in Canada,” said McCarthy. “It can contribute to the country’s productivity and provide good-paying, sustainable jobs. That, however, can only be achieved through a reformed regulatory regime and the eradication of the illicit market,” said Paul McCarthy, President of C3. “I look forward to working collaboratively with government and other stakeholders to make this industry the success story it can be.”

Rick Savone, Chair of the Cannabis Council of Canada and the Senior VP at Aurora Cannabis, expressed the Board’s enthusiasm about McCarthy’s appointment. 

“We are delighted to welcome Paul McCarthy as the new President of the Cannabis Council of Canada. His wealth of experience and proven track record in policy development and stakeholder engagement make him instrumental in driving C3’s annual strategic plan. We are confident that under his leadership, C3 will continue to be a leading voice in advocating for a thriving and responsible cannabis industry.”

McCarthy has received recognition for public service in managing the British Columbia component of the Infrastructure Stimulus program that saw a total investment of $1.2B to complete 450 projects over a two-year period. In addition, during his time with Veterans Affairs, he led the redesign and enhancement of financial benefits for Canadian Armed Forces veterans, culminating in the Pension for Life, which provided greater financial security for many veteran families.

McCarthy spent the last three years at Canopy, most recently as Head of Corporate Policy, as well as previous roles as head of international implementation and as a strategic advisor to the then President and CEO Bruce Linton. He has held several high-level roles within various federal ministries. 

C3 has served as the main national industry association for Canada’s cannabis industry since it was medical only, but has struggled to maintain membership in recent years as the industry struggles to survive in a highly regulated and taxed environment.

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