The city of Minneapolis has lost another veteran legislator.
Sen. Larry Pogemiller, a DFLer who was first elected to the House in 1980 and to the Senate in 1982, was named by Gov. Mark Dayton as director of the Office of Higher Education. His departure follows that of another Minneapolis DFLer, Sen. Linda Berglin, who left the Legislature this summer to take a position with Hennepin County.
Pogemiller served as Senate Majority Leader at the time when DFLers lost the majority to Republicans in the 2010 election. Up until that time, he had served in the majority in the Senate, and was a leader in K-12 education and higher education issues. His district, Senate District 59, includes the University of Minnesota's Twin Cities campus.
Dayton said in a statement that Pogemiller is "one of the smartest, most talented, and most dedicated people I have ever met in public service.'' He said Pogemiller has "unparalleled experience and expertise in the legislative process and in public policy issues.''
The Office of Higher Education provides financial aid programs for students and is a center for research on higher education and financial aid. The Office administers up to $150 million in grants. Pogemiller replaces Susan Von Mosch, the acting interim director.