Local business owner announces Duluth City Council campaign

Local business owner Derek Medved announced his campaign Thursday for an At Large Duluth City Council seat.

Medved, 24, announced his candidacy among a group of supporters outside of his Korner Store gas station in Duluth’s Gary neighborhood Thursday morning. He joins a slate of other candidates running for the At Large positions before Tuesday’s filing deadline.

Two At Large seats are up for election in November. Current At Large council members Arik Forsman and Noah Hobbs, who is also council president, have both filed for the seats, as well as Stephen Abernethy, Mike Mayou and Matthew William Stewart.

Medved operates four Korner Store gas stations, and the News Tribune named Medved to its “20 Under 40” list last year.

He said during a news conference that he wants to grow Duluth’s business scene by improving the relationship between the city and businesses, with hopes of bringing bigger industries to Duluth. He said he also wants to focus on infrastructure, public safety, business climate, taxes and health issues.

“I think (the campaign) will go really well. You know, we’ve done a lot with the community,” he said at the press conference. “They’ve supported me through the thick and the thin, and I think it’s time to give back to the community.”

And as a newcomer to city politics, Medved said he’s not deterred. “A fresh set of eyes is always a good thing,” he said.

Sharee Johnson, Medved’s campaign treasurer, joined a group of around 20 family, friends and community members to support Medved during the announcement. She said she’s a supporter because of his ability to manage budgets and people.

“I think he can bring the skills he has (from) his business to the City Council,” she said.

Lisa Van Doren, a neighbor of Medved’s also stood in the crowd of supporters. “By him being a member of the City Council, I think he’s going to make it a point to get to know the issues and to address them,” she said.