Will Higlin Named OLCC Deputy Director

OREGON: Will Higlin has been appointed Deputy Director for the Oregon Liquor Control Commission as of April 1, 2017.  The announcement comes after Merle Lindsey, respected 35-year veteran of OLCC, announced his retirement from the agency as Deputy Director.

Higlin joined the OLCC in May 2014 as the Liquor Licensing Director, and was quickly promoted to the Senior Director of Licensing and Compliance in 2015.  In his new role, Higlin oversees OLCC operations for Distilled Spirits, Marijuana, and Public Safety programs. 

Since the legalization of marijuana, the agency has undergone considerable changes in structure, services, and operations including the largest retail liquor expansion since prohibition. 

“I’m confident in Will’s ability to serve as a source of stability as we continue to improve the services we offer and transition operations to modern, integrated business practices,” said Steve Marks, OLCC Executive Director.  “His willingness to assume additional leadership responsibilities has played a key role in OLCC’s success.”

“I’m grateful for the confidence that Executive Director Marks has placed in me and look forward to working with our industry partners and liquor agents to ensure we meet and exceed the expectations of Oregon customers.” says Higlin. “The steady improvements made in public safety and licensing will continue to move ahead under new leadership.”

Higlin has a strong history of business and customer service accomplishments including 15 years during the establishment of the Oregon Lottery where he served as the Assistant Director of Retail Operations.  He also has a record of customer engagement success in the private sector as Director of Sales for North America at SPIELO G2 and Director of Regional Marketing at GTECH Corporation.  

Higlin holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Business Education from Oregon State University.  He lives in Salem with his wife Patty where they raised three daughters. 

On Merle Lindsey’s departure, Executive Director Marks remarked, “Merle has been a source of strength and integrity for the agency, ensuring a successful transition for executive leadership.  He has shepherded the growth of our billion dollar business, which has provided Oregonians an incredible support for state and local public services over the decades.”