After 25 years in state Senate, Chuck Wiger of Maplewood won't seek re-election

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Oct. 13—After 25 years in the Minnesota Senate and 50 years in public office, Sen. Chuck Wiger, DFL-Maplewood, won't seek re-election next year, he announced Wednesday.

"It's truly been an honor representing our great area," Wiger said in a statement. "I have so many positive memories and have made many great friends in this role. I love public service, helping people, and addressing policy challenges."

Wiger, 70, entered elected office for the first time at age 21, when he was elected to the North St. Paul-Maplewood-Oakdale Independent School District 622 in 1973. He also has served on the Metropolitan Council and the Ramsey Soil and Water Conservation District.

Known for his loaf of auburn hair and his demeanor that can be both passionate and muted, education has always been a core part of his work. Wiger currently serves as the Democratic minority's ranking member of the Senate's E-12 Education Policy ad Finance Committee.

"This will be my 50th year in public service, and is the right time to transition," he said. "My mentor, former State Sen. Jerry Hughes, often emphasized, 'Your health is your wealth.' I am very thankful to be in excellent health and want to spend more time with my family, traveling and hiking. Life and time seem to go faster as we get older, so count your blessings and seize the moment. Thank you."

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