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Martell files for School Board seat

Loren Martell will make his fourth consecutive bid for a Duluth School Board seat.

The outspoken critic of the Duluth school district filed for an At Large seat at the end of the filing period Tuesday, bringing the number of At Large candidates to five and forcing a Sept. 12 primary. Martell ran for a District 3 seat in 2015, and also ran for seats in 2013 and 2011, all unsuccessfully.

Loren Martell

The 64-year-old small-business owner also writes a column on the Duluth School Board for a local alternative publication. He said Tuesday night that he's running again because he thinks the board needs better governance, and because of his longtime involvement in school district issues, he knows more about the work involved than other non-incumbents.

"My primary concern is with the budget; I think district staff is working very hard but laboring in an environment of constant operational cuts to offset the deficit," he said, and he's concerned about ongoing school equity issues. Reversing enrollment trends is a goal, he said, noting he was "looking forward" to hitting the campaign trail for the fourth time and talking to residents about issues. Whether he wins or loses, he said, he wants his voice to be part of the process.

The other At Large candidates are Harry Welty, Sally Trnka, Bogdana Krivogorsky and Josh Gorham.