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Write-in votes will likely elect school board members: School board filings

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Write-in candidates may be filling a number of area school board seats next year.

A number of school districts in the area have more open school board seats than they have candidates. Ballots for the Nov. 2 general election are set, now that filing has closed for school district and city offices.

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In races without enough candidates to fill all seats, write-in votes will determine who wins the open seats.

The Montevideo School Board has three seats open, but only two candidates filed. Superintendent Luther Heller said he wasn't sure how much interest the remaining seat would attract.

"I don't know if having one seat with no declared candidate will generate the organization of any write-in campaigns," he wrote in an email.

In Benson two incumbents filed to run for three open positions. An incumbent on the board since 2000 opted not to file for re-election.

"It is pure speculation on my part, but I think that people know that being a school board member is a difficult job and a lot of the decisions that have to be made are unpopular, especially when it comes to budget reductions," Superintendent Lee Westrum wrote in an email to the Tribune. "And we all know the school funding situation is not going to get better any time soon."

In Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City, Superintendent Sherri Broderius said she has wondered why just one person filed to run for four open seats, even though more inquired about the positions.

"Being a board member is a big responsibility," she wrote, and it requires hours of preparation for meetings, committee meetings and training on legal and ethical matters.

"Elected school board members and school board candidates are to be commended for their willingness to serve their communities and stick their necks out on tough decisions," Westrum concluded in his email.

Area filings were taken from the Minnesota secretary of state's website, which lists candidate filings as they are turned in across the state.

Atwater-Cosmos-Gove City

Four seats open

Megan Morrison, Atwater

Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa

Four seats open

Ginny Borgerding, Brooten

Paul Gregory, Belgrade

Brian Knight, Brooten

Scott Voss, Belgrade

Sue Woolcott, Belgrade

Special election for one seat

No candidates filed

Benson

Three seats open

Stan Claussen, Montevideo

Shelly Vergin, Benson

BOLD

Three seats open

Russ Lesniak, Olivia

Dawson-Boyd

Four seats open

Andrew Greiner, Dawson

Dave C. Hickey, Dawson

Ann Jenson, Dawson

Dan Lee, Dawson

Shane Myers, Dawson

Dean Solem, Dawson

Jon Wager, Dawson

Hancock

Three seats open

Joel Flaten, Hancock

Rodney Peterson, Hancock

Tim Schaefer, Hancock

Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg

Three seats open

Philip Hauge, Sunburg

Warren Johnson, Pennock

Pam Mansfield, Kerkhoven

Charlotte Rosemeier, Murdock

Thomas J. Walsh, DeGraff

Harmon R. Wilts, Kerkhoven

Lac qui Parle Valley

District 1, one seat

Scott Conn, Appleton

Randy Henneberg, Appleton

District 2, one seat

Brian Tebben, Madison

District 4, one seat

Terry Halvorson, Madison

District 5, one seat

No candidates filed

New London-Spicer

Four seats open

Holli Cogelow Ruter, Spicer

Dan DeGeest, New London

Helena Lungstrom, Spicer

Robert C. Moller, Spicer

Todd Neumann, New London

Minnewaska

Three seats open

Bruce Anderson, Glenwood

Chad M. Christianson, Glenwood

Montevideo

Three seats open

Andrew Stenson, Montevideo

Steven Kubista, Montevideo

Paynesville

Four seats open

Mark Dingmann, Paynesville

Debra Glenz, Paynesville

David Johnson, Paynesville

Lew W. Storkamp, Paynesville

Renville County West

Three seats open

Darin Bratsch, Danube

Eric Dahlager, Sacred Heart

Willmar

Three seats open

Brian F. Bollig, Willmar

Dan Croonquist, Kandiyohi

Bill Fenske, Willmar

Jill J. H. Gould, Willmar

Linda Mathiasen, Willmar

Shawn Mueske, Willmar

Nathan R. Streed, Willmar

Don Thorpe, Kandiyohi

Yellow Medicine East

Three seats open

Dawn Odegard, Clarkfield

Special election for one seat

Grant Velde, Granite Falls

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Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

(320) 214-4340
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