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Minnesota labor commissioner Roslyn Robertson to retire later this month

Robertson leaves the agency after working there for 34 years and recently overseeing the rollout of the $500 million pandemic worker pay program.

Roslyn Robertson
Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Roslyn Robertson speaks to reporters at a news conference in Stacy, Minnesota, on Wednesday, July 27, 2022. Robertson on August 1, 2022, announced that she would retire.
Dana Ferguson / Forum News Service
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ST. PAUL — Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Roslyn Robertson announced Monday, Aug. 1, she will retire from the post later this month.

Robertson is set to leave the agency on Aug. 12 after working there for 34 years and leading it for more than a year and a half.

In a news release, Robertson said she'd enjoyed working on issues that affect Minnesota workers during her more than three decades with the department. Robertson started as a student worker there before rising to assistant commissioner for workplace safety and to the department's leader in 2021.

"It has been an honor to lead our agency's dedicated staff members and ensure all our stakeholders' input is considered, valued, and acted upon," Robertson said.

Gov. Tim Walz appointed Robertson after the GOP-led Senate voted against the confirmation of former Commissioner Nancy Leppink in 2020, effectively terminating her from the post.

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The first-term governor credited Robertson with helping launch the $500 million pandemic hero pay program and bringing her background in investigating workplace settings to the role.

“Commissioner Robertson’s years of work to improve workplace safety have made Minnesotans safer on the job,” Walz said. “From her work to educate employees about their rights, to heading up the Frontline Worker Pay program, I am incredibly grateful for her decades of service and dedication to our state.”

Deputy Commissioner Nicole Blissenbach is set to serve as interim commissioner following Robertson's retirement. Walz said Blissenbach was expected to remain in that position through early 2023 when the governor's first term ends.

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Follow Dana Ferguson on Twitter  @bydanaferguson , call 651-290-0707 or email  dferguson@forumcomm.com.

Related Topics: GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
Dana Ferguson is a Minnesota Capitol Correspondent for Forum News Service. Ferguson has covered state government and political stories since she joined the news service in 2018, reporting on the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the divided Statehouse and the 2020 election.
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