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Little ’07 Takes Mayoral Oath of Office

Posted by Jenna Ray on Monday, Jan. 14, 2013

On Monday, January 7, Matt Little '07 began a two-year appointment as the newest mayor of Lakeville, Minnesota. At 28, he is the youngest mayor in Lakeville’s history. Running under the slogan "It's time for a Little leadership," Little was elected mayor of his hometown after serving two years as a Lakeville City Council member. His administration will focus on public safety, low property taxes, and job creation.

“Morris has played a critical role in my current success,” says Little. “The late Tom McRoberts, to this day, continues to inspire me to focus on why I'm running. Without his mentoring, support, and confidence I would not be where I am today. Former Professor [of Political Science] Paula O'Loughlin taught me an incredible amount about electoral politics and held me to a higher standard.”

It is not only his experience on campus, but also his awareness of ties between the University and the local community, that now informs Little’s political process. “The town of Morris taught me a good deal about how politics should work. Despite ideological differences, citizens of Morris and the campus constantly work together on projects that improve the entire community. I try to bring that way of working with others to my political perspective.”

Prior to taking on his mayoral role, Little worked as a law clerk and served as a City Council member on the Downtown Lakeville Business Association, Public Safety Committee, and Municipal Legislative Commission. A second-year law student at the University of Minnesota, he completed a bachelor of arts in American politics at Morris in 2007, then worked as a debate coach at Rosemount High School and served as an English-language tutor for children of Karen immigrants. He continues his role as a family support worker and committee member on the Eagan and Lakeville Resource Centers Development Board.

Administering Little’s oath of office was Minnesota State Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie Skjerven Gildea '83. During her career at Morris, Gildea was both a Scholar of the College and a member of the Dean's List. She also received a Medal for Outstanding Undergraduate. She holds a juris doctor from Georgetown University Law Center, where she graduated magna cum laude in 1986. In 2006, she was appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court. Gildea received the University of Minnesota, Morris Distinguished Alumni Award in 2007 and served as the keynote speaker of Morris’s 2007 Commencement ceremony, at which Little was a member of the graduating class.