Whiteness of state workforce targeted

Gov. Mark Dayton is promising to remake the face of Minnesota state government, saying it’s too white.

The Star Tribune says the governor’s initiative comes amid “criticism by some black political and community leaders who said in September his administration had not done enough to address the vast racial disparity in Minnesota’s economy.”

“It is certainly a priority for our office to have diversity among our commissioners,” Dayton said in a statement.

Here are the governor’s commissioners.


There are only two people of color in Dayton’s cabinet.

“I’m an African-American, and there’s few African-Americans within the Capitol, so sometimes you do find yourself within those positions in which people are asking you to sort of comment or give a position for all people of color,” Kevin Lindsey, Department of Human Rights commissioner, told the paper.

Since January, when Dayton issued an executive order to increase the state workforce’s diversity, 25 percent of new management hires were members of a minority group.

Related: Risky Business: Confronting Racism in America (MPR News)