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Klobuchar hires Brig. Gen. Cossalter as top aide for military, veterans affairs

WASHINGTON — Brig. Gen. Tim Cossalter, the former Assistant Adjutant General for Air of the Minnesota National Guard, will join Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s staff as her new outreach director for veterans affairs and military issues, her office confirmed today.

It’s a very high-profile pick for a policy-advising staffer, the ranks of which are usually populated by young veterans with Iraq or Afghanistan experience, or military officers completing a mid-career internship offered in partnership with the Department of Defense.

Cossalter brings four decades of experience to Klobuchar’s office, having also commanded the 133rd Airlift Wing in St. Paul, and before that the 148th Fighter Wing in Duluth, a wing in which he spent much of his career. Cossalter retired from the military earlier this year.

Maj. Gen. Larry Shellito, now the commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, called the pick an “excellent choice,” and a “win-win for the state of Minnesota.” Klobuchar, in a statement, hailed Cossalter and the “expertise and experience he will bring to this position.”

Martin Ludden, Klobuchar’s incumbent veterans and military point person, is leaving to become executive director of the Disabled American Veterans Foundation of Minnesota.

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