Susan Vento lives in Maplewood and represents District 12: In Dakota County, the cities of Coates, Hampton, Hastings, Miesville, New Trier, Randolph, Rosemount, South St. Paul, and Vermillion; and the townships of Douglas, Hampton, Marshan, Nininger, Randolph, Ravenna, and Vermillion; in Ramsey County, the portion of the city of Maplewood south of I-94; and in Washington County, the cities of Cottage Grove, Hastings, Newport, St. Paul Park, and the remaining two-thirds of the City of Woodbury west of Woodbury Drive and south of Bailey Road; and the townships of Denmark and Grey Cloud Island.
A former school teacher, Vento grew up in small Minnesota communities before landing in the east metro area in 1984. After teaching elementary school in Willmar, she served as a field representative and program organizer with the Minnesota Education Association and Education Minnesota for nearly 30 years.
She has a deep commitment to public service and helping improve the quality of life for all Minnesotans. Among many civic commitments, Vento was a board member of Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, the National Park Trust, the Friends of the Saint Paul Library, the Ramsey County Historical Society, and Neighborhood House. She serves on the board of directors for Friends of the Mississippi River.
Vento has a strong interest in fair and affordable housing, equity, advocating for the homeless, the environment, and social justice.
“Strong communities in the metro region and throughout Minnesota are keys to a vibrant future for all Minnesotans,” Vento said. “The Met Council plays a crucial role in ensuring thoughtful, collaborative innovation for both this region and the state.
“I’m excited to bring to the Council my commitment to public service and my experience in education and nonprofits that focus on improving quality of life for all Minnesotans.”
Since the death of her husband, the late U.S. Rep. Bruce Vento, from mesothelioma in 2000, Vento has been a tireless advocate to ban asbestos and protect the rights of people whose lives have been affected by it.
As a cancer advocate, her work has included lobbying on state and federal legislative proposals to protect patients’ legal rights, working with unions and veterans’ groups, testifying before Congress, speaking at national conferences, and more.