Candidates jumping into race for County Board District 3 seat

Four people have announced their candidacy for the Hennepin County board seat being vacated by Gail Dorfman, who has decided not to run again.

Dorfman has represented the county’s District 3 since 2000. It includes St. Louis Park and portions of southwest Minneapolis.

Former state Rep. Marion Greene, St. Louis Park City Council Member Anne Mavity, Hennepin County prosecutor Ben Schweigert and public policy consultant Katie Hatt have launched campaigns for Dorfman’s seat.

Greene, who represented District 60A in the Legislature from 2011–2012, most recently served as communications director for Mark Andrew’s mayoral campaign. She said Dorfman’s “leadership has been inspirational” — particularly her work on affordable housing and homelessness. “I’m running to continue Commissioner Dorfman’s work to help people in need,” she said.

Mavity said expanding economic opportunity would be a key priority for her if elected. She said affordable housing, regional transit and sustainable communities are the best ways to deal with disparities in the county.

“We live in a community that is pulsing with energy, economic vitality, creativity and opportunity,” she said. “But too many of our neighbors are being left behind. We can, and must, do better to ensure sustained success for future generations.”

Schweigert also has named reducing opportunity gaps, improving transportation options and increasing affordable housing as top priorities. “I want a Hennepin County that is optimistic enough to take on these challenges and strong enough to succeed,” he said on his campaign website.

Hatt, who formerly worked as an aide for Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin, is also an advocate of many progressive causes. Besides working in McLaughlin’s office, she has been a research consultant for the DFL Caucus at the Minnesota House of Representatives, a housing policy analyst for the Metropolitan Council and executive director of the Longfellow Community Council.

The DFL precinct caucuses are Feb. 4.