MINNEAPOLIS - Former State Legislator Kate Knuth will lead efforts to address racial equity, aging infrastructure, climate change and more in Minneapolis.
"So we're looking at what are some of the big stresses that the city is facing over time things like inequity and increasing housing costs and also big shocks like an infrastructure failure or a big storm like North Minneapolis saw a few years ago with the tornado -- making sure the city is prepared to navigate these things."
Now before you start to think this is some sort of new-agey, touchy-feely, nebulous idea...it's not just us.
There are 23 cities in the U.S. taking part and more around the world. The position was created in partnership with 100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation.
"For taxpayers sitting at home saying I don't want my money paying for this, it's not. It's not. It's grant funded work," Knuth added.
And her message to naysayers?
"I think we have a lot of tools but we haven't necessarily had a person whose job it was to take a step back and do some of that really future thinking planning and looking out 10 or 20 or 50 years and say 'What's going to happen in our city and how can we be best prepared to handle it?" she said. "I think it's exciting to have someone whose job it is to be doing that and to be connecting with all the people in the city government and more broader community who are interested in being better prepared for and better respond to the changes we have happening."
Knuth formerly served in the Minnesota House of Representatives representing District 50B (New Brighton, Arden Hills, Fridley, Shoreview) and also served as a director at the Institute on the Environment where she ran the Boreas Environmental Leadership Program through the University of Minnesota.