Brandt dies following 30 years promoting forest products industry

Wayne E. Brandt, born Oct. 1, 1957, died in Duluth today just ahead of his 62nd birthday after a battle with pancreatic cancer, it was announced by Minnesota Forest Industries where he served as executive vice president.

He was born in Minneapolis, raised in Willmar and moved to Duluth to attend UMD, from which he graduated.

Brandt’s career was a mix of politics and advocacy, beginning as a campaign aide for Rep. Jim Oberstar. He also worked on Walter Mondale’s 1984 presidential campaign and the 1988 presidential campaign of Michael Dukakis.  

His career also included positions with the Seafarers International Union and for the Iron Mining Association of Minnesota. He was best known for serving 30 years as executive vice president of Minnesota Forest Industries and the Minnesota Timber Producers Association (both based in Duluth), advocating for the forest products industry in St. Paul and Washington, D.C.

Brandt served on many forest-related boards and committees, including the Minnesota Forest Resources Council, to which he was appointed by Gov. Arne Carlson. He was still on the Council when he passed away.

Wayne was a member of First Lutheran Church and Ridgeview Country Club, and was a former member of the Spirit Mountain board of directors.

Arrangements with Dougherty Funeral Home are pending.