Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak is reaching across the street to Hennepin County for the next city attorney, according to City Hall sources.

Rybak is expected to announce today his nomination of Susan Segal, an assistant Hennepin County attorney. She previously served as deputy to former County Attorney Amy Klobuchar.

"She is fabulous," said county library director Amy Ryan, who worked with Segal on library merger legal issues. "It's a loss to the county."

Segal's experience is on the civil side, as is typical for the job, but the attorney serves both as the city's chief legal adviser and oversees the prosecution of less serious crimes.

Rybak's chief of staff, Tina Smith, said last month that he was looking for someone with the capacity to lead on issues in the criminal justice system. Rybak is paying close attention to youth violence issues, and presented recommendations of a task force on the topic to the council Monday.

If confirmed by the council, Segal will succeed Jay Heffern, who served as city attorney for 11 years. He was the last of the major department heads whom Rybak inherited to be replaced.

Segal joined the county attorney's office in 2003 after 14 years in private practice, where she specialized in employment law. She also has taught at William Mitchell College of Law. She is married to Myron Frans, a tax attorney at Faegre and Benson. They live in the Lowry Hill neighborhood of Minneapolis. She is the daughter of former state legislator Gloria Segal.

Segal made a brief bid for county commissioner in 2006, before incumbent Gail Dorfman dropped her congressional bid. She's been a steady contributor to DFL candidates, including $2,600 to Klobuchar's Senate run, and $1,500 to Dorfman's congressional bid, both for 2006 elections.

Segal and Rybak's office couldn't be reached late Monday.

Steve Brandt • 612-673-4438