ST. PAUL  (AP) -- Larry Shellito has been confirmed by Minnesota's Senate as state Veterans Affairs commissioner.

The former leader of the Minnesota National Guard won approval on a voice vote on Thursday. He is the first member of Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton's cabinet to be confirmed.

Shellito was selected in January to head the agency that oversees state veterans benefits and veterans homes. It ended a brief break from government for Shellito, who retired in October as adjutant general of the Guard.

Commissioners and other gubernatorial appointees are rarely denied confirmation.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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