Skip to main content

CRA Announces Claire Patterson as Director of Michigan’s New Cannabis Reference Laboratory

Today, the Cannabis Regulatory Agency (CRA) announced the hiring of Claire Patterson as the director of the new state cannabis reference laboratory, which is scheduled to open by the end of 2024. The reference laboratory will assist in industry standardization by optimizing and verifying standard methods and will improve oversight of the cannabis industry by enhancing audit and investigative capabilities.

“In her five years with the CRA, Claire has worked tirelessly to establish Michigan as a leader in cannabis testing and product safety,” said CRA Executive Director Brian Hanna. “Claire is a trusted figure in cannabis science at both the state and national level and I believe that she will ensure the CRA meets our goals regarding the new cannabis reference laboratory.”

The new state cannabis reference laboratory will:

  • Provide results to support CRA enforcement investigations without placing undue financial burden on CRA licensees.
  • Provide results to support a CRA-mandated, industry-wide audit procedure on an on-going basis.
  • Optimize current standard methods and validate and verify newly developed methods, or methods which are in pilot.
  • Provide ongoing review of audit programs administered by 3rd-party ISO-accrediting bodies.
  • Develop a comprehensive laboratory proficiency testing program to ensure licensed laboratory accuracy, precision, and consistency.

“Claire has served as a workgroup chair for the Cannabis Regulators Association (CANNRA) Lab Testing and Product Safety committee and during that time, has established herself as a trusted resource for regulators across the country,” said CANNRA Executive Director Gillian Schauer. “Claire has also worked with regulatory peers from other states to lay a foundation for the development of reference laboratories and to help regulators troubleshoot challenges related to laboratory testing.”

Patterson will start in her new role at the CRA on April 28, 2024. She earned both her B.S. Environmental Biology/Plant Biology (2011) and her M.S. Plant Biology / Pathology / Genetics (2015) from Michigan State University and has worked for the CRA since March 2019, first as a laboratory scientist specialist, and for the last four years as a state administrative manager over the scientific and legal sections.

“My objective since joining the CRA has been to legitimize testing in the cannabis industry and I will pursue this goal until the end of my career,” said Patterson. “This is not just my job; this is my passion and my mission as a scientist. I am excited to do my part to continue to set Michigan apart as a national leader in the cannabis industry.”

Media Inquiries

Media Contact: