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"The summer travel season is shaping up pretty well with strong performances in Duluth and Hermantown. We’re also seeing good pick up in Minneapolis North Loop at the Element and even some corporate travel at the Home2 in Bloomington on the 494 strip." -- Mark Labovitz (pictured), President and Chief Executive Officer of Labovitz Enterprises, a Duluth based and family owned business that owns and operates hotels and real estate in Duluth; Bloomington, Minnesota and Palm Coast, Florida.


Duluth Central grad Scott Lyons played football and majored in sociology and criminology at UMD.

The then fleet-footed, burly and almost overly musclebound offensive lineman -- who was spotted bench-pressing Volkswagons during off-season workouts throughout his illustrious college and high school sports career -- starred for the legendary Bulldogs coach Jim Malosky and later served on the Duluth Police force for 27 years, including his final 11 years as chief. 

“I got the bug to be a cop back in junior high,” said Lyons, 70, also well known by the nickname "Bubba". “Dave Morris was a liaison officer at Washington Junior in those days. I remember thinking even then, ‘Whoa, this is what I want to do.’”

Lyons retired from the city almost 20 years ago and spent the next 13 years leading the Fond du Lac Tribal Community College’s law enforcement training program.


Today, he owns and operates Lyons Security Consulting LLC.

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Lyons, reflecting on his productive Duluth Police tenure?


"After college, I actually got hired to be a police officer in Stillwater, before the City of Duluth called and asked me to stay here," he said. "I had a chance to advance from sergeant to Duluth chief when I was probably 37, 38 years old, 39 maybe."

Has local policing changed throughout the years?

“The danger, the bad people and drug dealers and all that stuff, that comes and goes and really doesn’t change. Bad behavior is bad behavior,” said Lyons (pictured), who cut his local policing teeth working the downtown district. “The gun stuff is more prevalent today. It’s also hard to find people to be police officers today, and that's a concerning trend. It was also tough to recruit officers in the late 1960’s, following the Kent State and Democratic National Convention revolutions, and during the hippie and drug movements.


“Policing has changed, but in some places it hasn't changed enough. And so, the result some people are revolting, saying, ‘We want better policing, we want better accountability.’ Ultimately, it will be good for the profession, good for our country. You can't whine about it, and we’ve got to move forward. In some cities the police have sort of decided what they're going to do, not what's right for the community. I don't blame people for some of the revolt that's happened, I really don't.”

Lyons led the local drug task force for many years, and, like everyone, is concerned about a recent spike in local gun violence, among other traditional challenges facing public safety professionals.

“Duluth Police is still taking on the drug business – and will have to because it promotes so much bad behavior and violence," Lyons said.

Lyons admitted that he had considered running for local elected office.

"But, at the end of the day, being police chief was as political as I cared to get," he said. "I’ve had my share of somebody trying to beat you up, tell you how to do your job and tell you how stupid you are and all that stuff. I don't need that. I think I can accomplish more from the outside as the inside. I'm still involved in all kinds of local boards and commissions, and I'll continue to do that. I also volunteer as a UMD coach football, which been fun."

How would Lyons like to be remembered?


“First off, I want to keep living,” he joked. “I want people to say, ‘He's a good guy. He cared about his community, he cared about people.’ I really do. I thrive on friendships and enjoy running into people and just shooting the breeze with them, talking about their life and asking how things are going. I'm proud to be a local kid who still lives here and can help people out."


Now, per one of the most asked local sports questions of all-time: Who was the better athlete, Lyons or his longtime sidekick and legendary Bulldogs football teammate Scott Hanna?


“Oh, Honey Bear was by far the better athlete,” said Lyons. “He played all kinds of sports. And for a guy that had no size to him -- he was 5-foot-1, 160 pounds – he was a stud. He could do it all. But I'm a lot smarter and better looking than him.”


Ian R. Vincent has been promoted to Director, Business Development and Matt Shermoen to Senior Business Developer at APEX, a private sector-led business development engine established to promote sustainable growth in the region.


Calling Duluth mentors 65 years or older! Discover a unique way to enrich your life through Mentor North’s Mutual Mentoring program in partnership with Duluth Aging Support and The College of St. Scholastica.


From September 2022 to May 2023, you’ll be paired with a younger student from The College of St. Scholastica’s Dignitas Program to foster connections across generations and build a mutually enriching relationship based on trust, respect, and understanding.


To apply or learn more about the program requirements, visit: or contact

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Urshan Retirement Group, Inc. strives in helping people achieve retirement goals. This is accomplished through education of the financial planning process, analyzing each individual's investment needs, as well as continuously reviewing and monitoring their personalized plan. Jordan Urshan (pictured) and Dan Urshan work as partners to ensure long-term consistency to your investment portfolio. They look forward to earning your business. Please give them a call to schedule your appointment. Call 218.625.7575 or stop by their office located at 5033 Miller Trunk Hwy, Hermantown, MN 55811.

Securities offered through Securities America, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Securities America Advisors, Inc. Urshan Retirement Group and Securities America are separate entities.

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