Mayor Emily Larson to speak at UMD on Wednesday

Mayor Emily Larson. Photo courtesy of Larson. 

Mayor Emily Larson. Photo courtesy of Larson. 

Duluth’s first female mayor Emily Larson is speaking on Wednesday, March 28, at University of Minnesota Duluth as a part of Women’s History Month. Mayor Larson is a graduate of UMD and enjoys being involved with her campus.

“I really try to attend events that I have been invited to whenever I can,” Larson said. “I like to give back to my educational community and I’m a strong believer in the values of UMD.”

Larson said she is looking forward to talking about her experience of being a female in politics and answering students’ questions.

“I’ll probably talk for 15-20 minutes, and then leave the rest of the hour for questions, which is my favorite thing to do,” Larson said. “To hear what thoughts people have and what questions has risen during my presentation.”

Third year women, gender and sexuality studies major Carly Madden is an intern for Women’s Resource and Action Center (WRAC) and was given the task of selecting and organizing an event during Women’s History Month. She chose to bring Larson in this Wednesday.

“I think her story is interesting,” Madden said. “She is the first elected female mayor in Duluth.”

Madden said that the office is excited to host the mayor.

“She will be talking about being a female in politics and her experience with it,” Madden said. “The event is fitting for anyone who’s interested in women’s politics and wants to know more.”

Women’s History Month has been celebrated in the month of March every year since 1987. Larson said that the month is an opportunity to openly celebrate women’s accomplishments.

“There is something about doing it consistently that is important,” Mayor Larson said. “I’ve watched the ability for women to lift one another up occur during the month in a more consistent way because I think there’s just a more consistent framework of how that fits.”

Mayor Larson said that the City of Duluth is currently engaged in a discussion around earned safe and sick time for workers, which will provide their workers with time off to deal with illness or other family emergencies. This is an issue that primarily hits low-aged workers, which disproportionately is women or people of color.

“We’re doing a few things from the policy perspective,” Mayor Larson said. “I’ve also been a big advocate of the efforts that we view for our city, including the police department’s effort to reduce sex trafficking.”

Mayor Larson is also working to make sure that there is a leadership path for non-white male professionals.

“Whether that’s here within the city or if it’s a leadership role within an organization, there’s something about simply showing the different faith of leadership that is really effective and helpful,” Mayor Larson said.

Mayor Larson will speak at 12:00 p.m. in Kirby Student Center 268 on Wednesday, March 28. The event is sponsored by WRAC. For more information, visit the event page.

NewsIdun Rasmussen