U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken announced on May 17, 2013 the formation of an advisory committee to assist them in recommending Minnesota’s next U.S. Attorney to the President. The current U.S. Attorney B. Todd Jones has been nominated to serve as the permanent director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF). His confirmation hearing is expected to be held soon. The committee will review letters of interest, conduct interviews, and offer guidance to Senators Klobuchar and Franken.
Judge Timothy O’Malley of the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings and the former head of Minnesota’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension will chair the committee, which will also include Annamarie Daley, a Minneapolis attorney in private practice; former U.S. Attorney Thomas Heffelfinger; Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall; Donald Lewis, Dean of Hamline Law School; retired St. Louis County Judge Carol Person; and Chief Thomas Smith of the St. Paul Police Department.
“This distinguished group of attorneys and law enforcement professionals will help identify an individual who will continue Minnesota’s long tradition of outstanding U.S. Attorneys,” Senator Klobuchar said. “That means a seasoned, respected attorney who is fair-minded, able to work productively with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, and who is committed to seeing that justice is done under the law and for the people of Minnesota. I’m confident that with the committee’s help, we will find an outstanding Minnesotan for this important law enforcement post.”
“As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I have a deep appreciation for the law enforcement community and the judicial system,” said Senator Franken. “Because of that, I understand the value of selecting Minnesota’s next U.S. Attorney with an advisory committee of expert officials with diverse backgrounds. I look forward to receiving the committee’s findings, and I am confident that their search will help us choose a dedicated attorney who will represent Minnesota well.”
Thomas Heffelfinger, a partner at Best & Flanagan, was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve as Minnesota’s U.S. Attorney, a position he held from 2001 to 2006. He also held this position under President George H.W. Bush during the years 1991 to 1993. Heffelfinger has a long record of work on issues of importance to the Native American community, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Family Advocacy Center of Northern Minnesota in Bemidji.