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Byberg endorsed to run for U.S. House

ALEXANDRIA -- Willmar's Lee Byberg received the Republican endorsement Saturday to run in November for Minnesota's 7th District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

He will challenge U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn.

Byberg "is a principled conservative leader who will work hard to win the support of western Minnesotans over the coming months," said Minnesota Republican Party Chairman Pat Shortridge in a party statement.

The GOP nomination of Byberg sets up a possible rerun of the 2010 race in the 7th District. Peterson won the 2010 race with 55 percent of the vote, compared to Byberg's 37 percent.

The new district boundaries to be used in the 2012 election are not vastly different. The district added a few counties, but still covers most of the western third of Minnesota. It stretches from the Canadian border to southwestern Minnesota, where just one row of counties still stands between the 7th District and the Iowa border.

Byberg is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management with a master's of business administration in finance. He is vice president of operations for Life Science Innovations of Willmar, parent company to Willmar Poultry Company, Epitopix animal vaccine company, and 14 other subsidiary companies.

Byberg previously worked as senior economics consultant for Phillips Petroleum Company, Stavanger, Norway, and Coopers & Lybrand of Minneapolis.

Byberg and his wife, Nancy, reside in Willmar and have three sons, Kristoffer, Anders, and Steffen.