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Former Willmar fire chief to announce bid for mayor

Marv Calvin to run for mayor of Willmar.

WILLMAR — Former Willmar fire chief Marv Calvin will announce today his intention to file for the office of mayor in the Nov. 4 general election.

Calvin will make his announcement at 3 p.m. today at the Willmar Fire Department meeting room. The public is invited.

Calvin said he is responding to numerous calls from area residents and is driven by a strong sense of community involvement.

An advance news release describes Calvin as a no-nonsense candidate with a clear vision for Willmar’s future. With an emphasis on regional significance, Calvin said he will work with city and county residents and officials to return Willmar to a strong leadership position, according to the news release.

“Working together we can move mountains to accomplish our goal to grow and prosper as a community and regional center,’’ Calvin said.

The news release said Calvin believes in the people of Willmar. Through his previous service as Willmar’s fire chief and involvement in many civic organizations, the release said, he is well equipped to recognize problem areas and facilitate practical solutions.

Calvin was appointed by Governors Ventura, Pawlenty and Dayton to the Minnesota Board of Firefighter Training, League of Minnesota Cities and Township Association. He was actively involved with Willmar’s Vision 2020 program and said he eagerly awaits implementation of the four target areas of Vision 2040.

Calvin said he knows what it takes to be successful and he said community involvement is the key to moving forward.

“The time has come for public and private community leaders to come together and provide the leadership needed to solidify Willmar as that ideal place to live, work and raise a family,’’ Calvin said.

Calvin was born in 1956 in Willmar and graduated from Willmar Public Schools in 1974. He and his wife, Ginna, have two children.

Calvin received his paramedic degree from Century College in 1980. He served as a paramedic in Wisconsin and the metro area before moving back to Willmar to serve as a casual paramedic.

He began his career in the fire service in 1977 in Pennock. He continued his fire service career in Apple Valley and Burnsville before returning home to serve as Willmar’s first full-time fire chief.

Calvin was instrumental in developing the Minnesota Board of Fire Training and Education and continues to support the fire industry throughout Minnesota through his work since August 2012 to the present as the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities fire training liaison via Ridgewater College.

Among Calvin’s accomplishment as fire chief/fire marshal from January 2000 to August 2012:

* Improved the city’s fire rating by the Insurance Services Office, which rates fire departments on a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 the best, and which raised Willmar Fire Department’s rating from a Class 4 to a Class 3.

* Implemented safety programs that allowed for greater firefighter safety.

* Assisted with the city of Willmar capital improvement plan through a strong understanding of local government finance.

* Eighteen years of experience providing fiscally responsible local government.