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Izzard elected Douglas County Sheriff

Matt Izzard carried more than 62% of the vote Tuesday. As no Republicans are running for the office, the primary vote decided the outcome of the race.

People in yellow shirts reading Izzard post with Matthew Izzard at an election party
Team Izzard celebrates as rural Douglas County voters give Douglas County Detective Matthew Izzard a healthy lead in the Democratic primary Tuesday, Aug. 9.
Contributed / Deb Krieg
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SUPERIOR — Douglas County Sheriff's Office detective Matthew Izzard will be the next sheriff, according to unofficial results of the Democratic primary Tuesday, Aug. 9.

Izzard carried more than 62% of the vote Tuesday night in a three-way race to be Douglas County’s top law enforcement officer.

Democratic challengers Deputy Brian Witt carried 18.2% of the vote and Douglas County Board Chairman Mark Liebaert received 19.2% of the vote.

The primary decided the outcome of the Nov. 8 election because all of the candidates ran as Democrats.

Izzard is a 19-year veteran of the sheriff’s office who has served in the jail, on patrol and provided courthouse security before taking on the role of investigator.

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Izzard said he plans to spend time between now and January preparing to take on the new job. He will take office Jan. 3.

“I spoke to Sheriff Dalbec,” Izzard said Wednesday, Aug. 10. “He’s going to walk me through the sheriff’s duties so we can put our best foot forward right away.”

Izzard said his No. 1 priority will be addressing the chronically understaffed jail and the resulting overtime.

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Matt Izzard
Contributed / Matt Izzard

“I have a plan in place that’s fiscally responsible that I would like to implement as soon as possible with the cooperation of the county board,” Izzard said. “I think it's important right off the bat that we have a strong working relationship. We can cooperate to achieve the goals that are best for the citizens.”

Izzard would like to have a meeting with board members soon to introduce himself and let them know how he plans to lead the sheriff’s office, he said.

Keeping the lines of communication open with the public is also a priority for Izzard.

“It’s important to be transparent with the public,” Izzard said. “I also think that helps morale … giving credit where it’s due goes a long way with earning the respect from employees."

This story was updated at 1:17 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10 to include statements from Sheriff-elect Matthew Izzard. It was originally posted at 11:42 p.m. Aug. 9.  

Shelley Nelson is a reporter with the Duluth Media Group since 1997, and has covered Superior and Douglas County communities and government for the Duluth News Tribune from 1999 to 2006, and the Superior Telegram since 2006. Contact her at 715-395-5022 or snelson@superiortelegram.com.
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