ST PAUL — City of Marshall Mayor Robert Byrnes was named the League of Minnesota Cities’ 2023 C.C. Ludwig Award recipient yesterday at the League’s Annual Conference in Duluth. The C.C. Ludwig Award is the League’s top honor for elected officials.

Byrnes has served as Marshall’s mayor since 1992. In 1993, Marshall experienced three major rain events on Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Independence Day – all of which caused flooding, damage, and worry among residents. Byrnes advocated for his city by testifying in front of a U.S. House committee in 1995 to secure additional funding for critical infrastructure improvements in flood control that have protected the city from catastrophic flooding since.

Byrnes’ played a pivotal role in the implementation of a local-option sales tax in 2013, which made construction of the Red Baron Arena and Expo possible. The same local-option sales tax allowed for the expansion of the MERIT Center, a 53-acre regional fire and rescue training facility that offers training opportunities to municipal emergency responders as well as private industrial emergency responders.

Byrnes served as chair of the MNDOT Area Transportation Board and chair of the Board of Directors of Prairieland Economic Development Corporation and Board Member for Habitat for Humanity of Redwood River. Byrnes currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Southwest Regional Development Commission, and is an active member and mentor on the Southwest Minnesota Council of Mayors.

The C.C. Ludwig Award is named for a former League executive director and is the League’s highest award for elected officials. Established in 1962, the award is presented annually in celebration of outstanding service. Recipients are chosen for their vision, statesmanship, and unwavering commitment to the public good.