David Lillehaug will take his appointed seat on the Minnesota Supreme Court on Monday despite a cancer diagnosis.
In a news release from the Supreme Court information office, Lillehaug said he learned last week he has throat cancer. The cancer, however, “has been caught very early, it is localized and it is highly curable,” Lillehaug said.
Lillehaug is preparing for a seven-week non-surgical treatment plan at Virginia Piper Institute, which is part of Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis. The treatment will begin in mid-June.
“While I may experience unpleasant side effects from the treatment (including around late June, the time of my formal investiture), I expect to participate fully in the Court’s ongoing work,” Lillehaug said.
Lillehaug was appointed to the high court in March by Gov. Mark Dayton to fill the Supreme Court vacancy of Justice Paul Anderson, who has reached mandatory retirement age. Lillehaug served as U.S. attorney in Minnesota during Bill Clinton’s presidency. In joining the court Lillehaug hangs up a long career in DFL legal advocacy including working on the 2008 U.S. Senate recount.