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Mary Pawlenty leaves bench for new job

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 (AP) - First lady Mary Pawlenty is hanging up her judicial robe next month.

      Gov. Pawlenty's office says his wife will leave the district court bench to join the National Arbitration Forum, which was described as a large provider of out-of-court dispute resolution services.

      Mrs. Pawlenty has been a judge based in Dakota County since 1994 and has handled criminal, civil and family law cases.

      In her new job, she'll be general counsel of the arbitration company. It is based in St. Louis Park and has offices in New Jersey and Los Angeles.

             (Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)