Gardner announces Willmar City Council bid in Ward 2
WILLMAR — Steve Gardner of Willmar announced Tuesday his intent to file next week for the Willmar City Council in Ward Two, which comprises much of southwest Willmar.
Filing for the elections in which a primary is possible opens May 20 and runs through June 3. If a primary is required, the date of the election is Aug. 12. The general election is Nov. 4.
Gardner served on the City Council from 2005 to 2009.
“I love this city, and want to see it thrive. We need a City Council that is capable of vigorous debate yet is respectful of its members and all sectors of the public. And we need a council that will move our city forward, believing as I do, that our best days are ahead of us, not behind us,’’ Gardner said in a news release.
“Some members of the council seem afraid of the future, and are more intent upon advancing a radical political agenda than governing for the greater good. I’ve spoken to scores of citizens who wish for the current dysfunction on the council to end, including many who have encouraged me to run for this seat on the council,’’ he said.
“We, both as a council and as a community, need to create and enhance current and future opportunities for economic growth, progress and job creation,’’ he said. “It’s time to speak out and act on behalf of our children and grandchildren who deserve a safe, prosperous, progressive and vibrant community to live in.”
Gardner, 55, is a longtime Willmar resident. His public resume includes service as the past chair of the board of directors of the Humane Society of Kandiyohi and Meeker Counties, where he currently serves as vice chair.
He currently serves on three Vision 2040 committees, and chairs two subcommittees of that community effort, addressing leadership, affordable workforce housing, and establishment of a dog park within the city limits. He is a past member of the Local Outreach committee at the Evangelical Free Church.
Gardner is a document imaging sales specialist with Bennett Office Technologies. He lives in Willmar with his wife, Kelly.
Councilmen Ron Christianson and Tim Johnson currently represent Ward 2. Christianson’s seat is up for election this year.