DULUTH – Former City Council Member Noah Hobbs announced Friday that he will run for the St. Louis County Board seat that will be vacant next year after Commissioner Beth Olson steps down.
"I'm engaged and have been active in my neighborhood for nearly a decade," Hobbs said in a statement. "The County Board is a way for me to continue to give back through public service and continue to serve my community."
On Monday, Olson announced she would not seek to be re-elected beyond her four-year term, which ends in January 2021. She represents the county's Third District, which includes the western side of Duluth.
"A lot of the skill sets that I have both from my professional work for nearly a decade and also on the council pairs well with what the County Board does," he said Friday.
The 30-year-old Hobbs is a lending director at a local housing agency. Because he was running for an at-large seat on the City Council, Hobbs will be campaigning to a group of voters about three times smaller than last November's election.
But the work of the County Board — which governs a population of 200,000, as opposed to Duluth's 86,000 — "is certainly of a larger scale," Hobbs said. "I think you have more leverage in the county position vs. the city. You just have access to more tools, more services."
Hobbs said his work has prepared him to help dive into issues like the opioid crisis, out-of-home foster care, housing shortages and economic development.