The task force will report to MP Bill Blair, who is not a member of the group, and will be presented to Parliament before the July 21 break for summer.
The group will create a framework on regulation, sales and taxation that will be compiled in a report to go to the Liberal government in November, with the resulting legislation hoping to be tabled by the spring of 2017.
McLellan previously served as minister of justice and minister of health under former prime minister Jean Chretien and then as public safety minister under Paul Martin.
In a 2005 interview, McLellan called cannabis a “dangerous substance.”
“We know it is a more potent carcinogen than smoke tobacco,” she said. “That’s what the research tells us. That’s irrefutable. That’s science.”