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 commissioner (audio) \ noun

Examples of commissioner in a Sentence

The baseball commissioner decided to suspend the players for 10 games.
Recent Examples on the Web Its members included the Baltimore police commissioner, the state’s attorney for the city, three judges, the mayor and City Council president. Emily Opilo,, "Baltimore Mayor Scott moves to restart criminal justice council ahead of meeting with Maryland Gov. Hogan on violent crime," 12 May 2021 The suit also named housing authority commissioner and Mill Brook public housing complex resident Tariq Jamaal and Fitch Court public housing complex resident Brian Cox, as well as Windsor resident Sally Grossman. Steven Goode,, "Windsor Housing Authority executive director terminated, committee formed to investigate tenure," 10 May 2021 Parara argued that Walsh appointed an interim police commissioner, Gregory Long, who can serve in that role until city voters elect a mayor this fall., "What will Acting Mayor Kim Janey do about Boston police?," 2 May 2021 At the start of 2020, the N.W.S.L. appointed a commissioner, Lisa Baird, who had previously worked for the N.F.L. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, "The Transformation of a Soccer Club, and the Ways We Value Women’s Sports," 30 Apr. 2021 On Wednesday, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas spoke with the E.U.'s commissioner for justice, Didier Reynders, in a virtual meeting where travel was discussed. NBC News, "Americans vaccinated against Covid may be allowed to go to Europe this summer," 26 Apr. 2021 But the police commissioner, who gets final say on punishment, has already decided there was no wrongdoing. Eric Umansky, ProPublica, "What Police Impunity Looks Like: “There Was No Discipline as No Wrongdoing Was Found”," 20 Apr. 2021 Jon Steinbrecher is the Mid-American Conference’s long-time commissioner, a current member of the Council, and has been chairing the most recent iteration of a Division I Working Group on Transfers. Steve Berkowitz, USA TODAY, "NCAA vote sets up change in transfer rules so football, basketball players won't have to sit," 16 Apr. 2021 The Quincy Police Department said the results of its investigation and charging decision will be forwarded to the city liquor commissioner, Mayor Kyle Moore, for review of the establishment’s liquor license. Charles J. Johnson,, "Battery charge filed against Quincy bar owner in attack on Black college student she says was racially motivated," 15 Apr. 2021

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

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Commissioner.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for commissioner



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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