I am a unique candidate who has many years of government experience in Blaine; I have extensive business experience as a small business owner in Blaine and I lead two non-profit organizations in Blaine.
I have served 14 consecutive years on the Planning Commission and I am the current chair. I have played a part in the planning of some of the expansion that Blaine has seen in the last decade +. On the Planning Commission I have worked with staff and City Council to strategically review the Comprehensive Plan of the city on two different review cycles.
I have also served 12 consecutive years on the Charter Commission. The Charter Commission reviews the City Charter and recommends charter amendments in keeping with the state law. I have learned a lot about planning and zoning and about the government structure of Blaine.
I was a chaplain for the SBM Fire Department and Blaine Police Department for 5 years. I did several “ride-alongs” with our police officers and served alongside them during tragic events. As a chaplain, I went on “death notifications” to several of my fellow citizens homes notifying them of a death in their family. I brought comfort to my fellow citizens after tragic events like suicide or drug overdose. I‘ve had the pleasure of getting to know the firefighters and police officers and their staff and I know firsthand that Blaine has an admired, respected and hard- working first responder group who serve us.
Because of my service to Blaine, I was awarded the Extra Mile Day Proclamation from Mayor Tom Ryan and the City Council in 2015.
I know the city’s strengths and the amazing opportunities that lie ahead.
My wife and I owned a 4-store dry cleaning business called Nu-Life Cleaners from 1988-2000. I employed 300 people in those years. I received a grant from the State of Minnesota and was the first dry-cleaner in the country to test the first- ever non-toxic dry-cleaning process and was featured in the Pioneer Press and the Star Tribune. One of our locations was at Northcourt Commons in Blaine.
I have served as the Lead Pastor at Hope Church since 2000. In that time period, we started 3 independent churches out of our existing building. Hope Church is designated as a “crisis community gathering spot” should a catastrophe occur in Blaine.
As a former business owner and entrepreneur, I felt a need to start a food shelf in Blaine in response to the Great Recession in our country. With no funding and only a couple of volunteers I founded Hope For The Community food shelf in 2010. In the first week of operation, we served 27 families. 12 years later we are serving over 900 families in Blaine (2800 fellow citizens in those families) 30,000 lbs. + of groceries each week. We have 4 locations today and we are opening another 5 locations in the next 12 months to serve people in need. Hope For The Community is a separate 501c3 non-profit humanitarian organization that is on pace to serve 56,000 households (170,000 people) this year. I serve as the volunteer CEO and President. Hope For The Community in Blaine is the largest food shelf in Anoka County.
I possess an A.A.S degree in Marketing, an A.A. degree in Liberal Arts, a B.S. degree in Management, an M.A. degree in Leadership and a Doctor of Ministry degree (organizational systems focus).
I grew up the youngest of 10 children in my hometown of Prior Lake.
I’m a 31-year resident of Blaine. I am married to my college sweetheart of 37 years. My wife is a lifelong citizen of Blaine. We have two adult married children (one family lives in Blaine) and we have two “perfect grandchildren”.
My extensive experience in serving in Blaine, combined with my business experience, my non-profit experience, and my education translates into a leader who is ready to serve at a high level of service on Day 1!
Anyone who knows me, knows that I love people and that I have a heart to serve others. I need your support!