com·​mis·​sion·​er | \ kə-ˈmi-sh(ə-)nər How to pronounce commissioner (audio) \

Definition of commissioner

: a person with a commission: such as
a : a member of a commission
b : the representative of the governmental authority in a district, province, or other unit often having both judicial and administrative powers
c : the officer in charge of a department or bureau of the public service
d : the administrative head of a professional sport

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Other Words from commissioner

commissionership \ kə-​ˈmi-​sh(ə-​)nər-​ˌship How to pronounce commissionership (audio) \ noun

Examples of commissioner in a Sentence

The baseball commissioner decided to suspend the players for 10 games.
Recent Examples on the Web Following a long-standing feud between commissioner Rob Manfred and the MLB Players Association throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the league announced Tuesday night there will be a 2020 season with Opening Day scheduled for the end of July. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "2020 MLB season: Detroit Tigers' roster size, trade deadline, rules for 60-game sprint," 24 June 2020 But no other league has had its commissioner, owners and players just completely poop all over any optimism among fans. Dave Clark, The Enquirer, "Guest TML: Five great moments from 'Junior,' Ken Griffey Jr. documentary on MLB Network," 22 June 2020 As commissioner Roger Goodell and others have stated, positive tests are going to happen this fall. Ben Volin,, "Here is what the NFL and NFLPA need to figure out before training camps open," 20 June 2020 The police commissioner, Edwin Upton Curtis, forbade his officers from joining any outside organization other than patriotic groups, such as the American Legion. Steven Greenhouse, The New Yorker, "How Police-Union Power Helped Increase Abuses," 18 June 2020 The commissioner, Jim DeTro, who later apologized for the post at a county meeting this month, did not respond to a request for comment. Anchorage Daily News, "As protests spread to small-town America, militia groups respond with armed intimidation and online threats," 18 June 2020 In an about face, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is encouraging teams to sign Colin Kaepernick. cleveland, "NFL’s Roger Goodell says Colin Kaepernick is welcome back on or off the field," 16 June 2020 But the week before, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his health commissioner, Howard Zucker, had all but made such discharges mandatory. Joaquin Sapien, ProPublica, "“Fire Through Dry Grass”: Andrew Cuomo Saw COVID-19’s Threat to Nursing Homes. Then He Risked Adding to It.," 16 June 2020 Kaepernick’s protest started a movement in the NFL, but commissioner Roger Goodell and the league’s owners fought back, and tried to ban players from kneeling in 2016. oregonlive, "Seattle Seahawks’ Carlos Hyde: NFL should sign Colin Kaepernick to show it is serious about racial issues," 9 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'commissioner.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of commissioner

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for commissioner

Middle English, "person empowered to carry out defined duties," borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin commissiōnārius, from commissiōn-, commissiō commission entry 1 + Latin -ārius -ary entry 1

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Time Traveler for commissioner

Time Traveler

The first known use of commissioner was in the 15th century

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Statistics for commissioner

Last Updated

1 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Commissioner.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for commissioner


How to pronounce commissioner (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of commissioner

: a member of a commission : one of a group of people who have been given the official job of finding information about something or controlling something
: an official who is in charge of a government department or part of a government department
US : an official who is in charge of a major professional sport (such as baseball, football, or hockey)


com·​mis·​sion·​er | \ kə-ˈmi-shə-nər How to pronounce commissioner (audio) , -ˈmish-nər \

Kids Definition of commissioner

1 : a member of a commission
2 : an official who is the head of a government department



Legal Definition of commissioner

: a person with a commission: as
a : a member of a commission
b often capitalized : the officer in charge of a government agency a police commissioner

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