At a press conference in Riverside Park Wednesday afternoon, Hannah Alstead declared her intention to seek one of two at large Duluth City Council seats that will be up for grabs in November.
Alstead, age 25, graduated from Duluth East High School in 2014, and then went on to earn a bachelor's degree in political science, government, criminology and deviance from the University of Minnesota in 2017.
She has worked as a field representative for U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, D-Minnesota, and as an outreach director for Sen. Tina Smith, D-Minnesota.
This will be Alstead's first run for public office.
Besides being motivated by a desire to serve her community, Alstead said, "I've met with many small-business owners and different people over my time in Duluth, and I think at this point recovering from COVID is one of the biggest issues that I want to drive home, because it intersects with every other issue that Duluth has on its own, whether it be workforce, housing or anything in between. It all falls together, and recovering from COVID is something we really need to hone in on now to make sure our city is prepared."
Two of the City Council's four at large seats will be decided later this year. Incumbent Zack Filipovich announced he will not seek a third term. Meanwhile, Terese Tomanek, who was appointed to serve out the remainder of at large Councilor Barb Russ' term in June 2020, has already announced her intentions to run for election to the office this fall.
Azrin Awal, a student at the University of Minnesota Duluth and a homeless advocate, announced her candidacy for an at large council seat earlier this month.
Filipovich's decision not to run was a turning point for Alstead, who said, "I was having conversations with my close friends and mentors who have encouraged me to run in the past, and I had a lot of drive to do it before, and then I decided to step back when Therese got into the race. But then when another seat opened up, I thought: This is what I want and need to do. I want to represent Duluth. This is my home, and I want to be part of its growth."
This story was updated at 4:15 p.m. May 12 with quotes from Council candidate Alstead. It was originally posted at 1:07 p.m. the same day.