ST. PAUL — Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Flanagan announced Thursday that Keith Helgeson has been appointed as district court judge in Minnesota’s Eighth Judicial District, according to a news release from the governor's office.

Helgeson will replace Dwayne N. Knutsen and will be chambered in Granite Falls.

“Mr. Helgeson is a devoted public servant with a career dedicated to improving the lives of the people of Yellow Medicine County,” Walz said in the release.

Keith Helgeson
Keith HelgesonCourtesy photo

“Mr. Helgeson will be a familiar face and a great addition to the Granite Falls bench,” Flanagan said in the release. “He has served his community with pride for over 25 years, and I am excited to see him excel in his new position.”

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Minnesota’s Eighth Judicial District encompasses Big Stone, Chippewa, Grant, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, Meeker, Pope, Renville, Stevens, Swift, Traverse, Wilkin, and Yellow Medicine counties.

Helgeson is currently the Yellow Medicine County Attorney and was a law clerk for Judge Bruce Christopherson. He is also an adjunct professor at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall.

As county attorney, Helgeson represents Yellow Medicine County in criminal, juvenile, child protection and civil court matters. He also advises the County Board and various county departments.

Helgeson has volunteered and worked with several different community organizations, including the Yellow Medicine County Restorative Justice Advisory Council, the Chemical Health Coalition, and the Prairie Lakes Advisory Board. He currently serves as president of the Tri-County Law Library Board and as a mock trial coach.

Previously, Helgeson was a member of the Granite Falls City Council and Granite Falls Hospital Board.