Governor Elect Walz names some tech-savvy Commissioners: Steve Kelley & Steve Grove

According to the La Crosse Tribune

The Democratic governor-elect tapped former state senator Steve Kelley as his commerce commissioner. He picked Steve Grove, founding director of the Google News Lab, to head the Department of Employment and Economic Development. He named former Obama administration official Nancy Leppink to lead the Department of Labor and Industry. Army and Minnesota National Guard veteran Larry Herke will lead the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Walz, who takes office Monday, still needs a new commissioner of information technology.

Steve Kelley is a long term broadband advocate. He has been on the Blandin Foundation Broadband Strategy Board for many years. When asked a year ago what was the most pressing need of rural areas, broadband came up on Steve’s shortlist…

Elections in many countries have revealed that rural residents are afraid for their futures and feel they are not in control of their destinies. Even closer to home, rural communities want to see themselves as part of a dynamic, prosperous future, rather than fear gradually waning as young people move to the cities. Rural residents want to be doing the cool things happening in cities; maybe their kids will come back after college. High-speed telecommunications is essential to an innovative future with economic and creative opportunities; it is tough to do cool stuff without it!

And while I don’t know Steve Grove in the same way, it seems that anyone related to Google News Lab should appreciate the need for ubiquitous broadband.

This entry was posted in MN, Policy by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

2 thoughts on “Governor Elect Walz names some tech-savvy Commissioners: Steve Kelley & Steve Grove

  1. I lived in St Louis Park several years ago, and Steve Kelley was my rep. He was also a fantastic library supporter!


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