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Law School Pays Tribute to Political and Business Leader Douglas Head

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Douglas M. Head ('56)


Douglas M. Head ('56), a former Minnesota Representative and Attorney General, died Feb. 2, 2011, at his home in Minneapolis at age 80.

Head served in the Minnesota House of Representatives for two legislative sessions in 1961–64, for District 30 in the 62nd session and for District 38 in the 63rd session. He was an alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention from Minnesota in 1964 and 1972.

He was elected Minnesota Attorney General in 1966 and took office in 1967. In 1970 he ran for Minnesota governor, losing a hard-fought battle to DFL candidate Wendell Anderson. When Head's term as attorney general ended in January of 1971, he retired from politics and formed the law firm of Head & Truhn (now Head, Seifert & Vander Weide) with former Minnesota Solicitor General Jerome D. Truhn.

As a businessman, Head had interests in housing, retail, and transportation around the Twin Cities area. He formed a residential real estate development and management company, and in 1983 with partners Ray Harris and Martha Head, he developed Calhoun Square, a retail mall that became the centerpiece of Minneapolis' Uptown neighborhood.

Head graduated from West High School, Minneapolis, as president of his senior class in 1947. He received postsecondary education at Phillips Exeter Academy and the University of California College of Economics. In 1952 he completed a B.A. in political science at Yale University. He graduated from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1956 as a member of the Order of the Coif.

He served as president of the National Association of Attorneys General and in 1967 was appointed chair of the Minnesota Governor's Commission on Crime Prevention and Control. In 1971, President Richard Nixon appointed Head to the U.S. National Commission on Consumer Finance, where he served until 1973. He also chaired the Minnesota Advertising Review Board and served on the board of the Red River Valley and Western, the Twin Cities and Western, and the Minnesota Prairie shortline railroads. A polio survivor, Head was an active member and served on the board of the Minnesota Society for Crippled Children and Adults (now the Courage Center, Golden Valley, Minn.).

Head is survived by Martha, his wife of 41 years, and by two daughters, M.E. Kirwan and Virginia Head.