I have grown with the City of St. Michael over the past 42 years. My family moved to St. Michael in 1980. Between 1986 and 2007, I lived in many different communities across the metropolitan area. I purchased a house in Albertville in 2000 and purchased the house my father built in 2007 and moved back to St. Michael, where I have lived since.
I graduated from St. Michael Albertville High School in 1986. In 1996, I graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelors of Science degree focused in Civil Engineering.
In 1988, I began my 34 year career working for the Minnesota Department of Transportation. I began my career as a highway technician working as an inspector in construction, as a member of the survey crew, and other various duties. When I graduated, I became a registered Civil Engineer and my career has grown. I am currently the Director of Program Delivery for the Metropolitan District of the Minnesota Department of Transportation.
The city must collect funding from its residents to provide the goods and services required to preserve a certain quality of life within the community. The development of the needs should be developed in an open and transparent fashion that defines the products and services provided and at that appropriate level. Once the products and services and the appropriate level of service are defined, the development of the budget required to provide those products and services can be developed.
The development of our city needs to be managed with robust planning to ensure that we are accounting for long term needs to support growth in an effective and efficient manner. The growth needs to be balanced between residential, business, and commercial to ensure that we have businesses to support the residents of the city and provide employment opportunities. That includes but is not limited to transportation, educational facilities, sewer and water, and recreational facilities.
Our transportation network needs to grow to support the growth of the City. I have 34 years of experience working in the transportation industry developing projects that benefits the people of the state. This system should include facilities that support all modes of transportation including high quality pedestrian and bicycle facilities that can be used to commute as well as be recreational. We need to work collaboratively with our partners at adjacent cities, Wright County, and the State of Minnesota to ensure that we are staying current with our transportation needs, but also optimizing funding opportunities that may exist to assist with the funding of our needs.
We need to develop the city such that it becomes an inviting place for new business to come into our community, but also preserves the businesses we already have in our community. Ideally, we would develop businesses that would be supported by the community. The businesses we bring in should support the community through employment, providing goods and services required to support the community, and recreational opportunities.
One of the primary needs for people to strive to live in our community is the security they feel, in the community. We need to continue supporting Wright County Sheriff's Department for police services, the St. Michael's Fire Department to ensure that they are equipped to serve our city, and our first responders to ensure that we have adequate medical services.
Sense of Community/Community Cohesiveness:
One of the functions for the city is to provide opportunities for the citizens to gather and socialize. The City of St. Michael has done great work with the provisions of a community center, sponsored community events, such as the St. Michael Daze and Knights event, and providing facilities for the community to gather at local parks and etc.
Parks and Recreation:
Parks, trails, and greenspace are essential to preserve a high quality of life in our city. The neighborhood parks provide opportunities for local gatherings without much commuting. The city needs to provide for a trail network that not only provides recreational opportunities but provides an alternative source of transportation. Our city planning does a great job in reserving greenspace for future parks. The city should also be working to develop strong relationships with partner agencies that would optimize funding that could be used to develop these facilities.
I was appointed the Planning and Zoning Commission in January of 2021. I have been afforded the opportunity to work with that commission to review proposed developments and provide recommendations to the Council regarding the proposed development, review variance requests to city ordinance, work with the update of the City of St. Michael's Comprehensive Plan, and the many other issues that this commission addresses on a monthly basis. I believe that this opportunity strengthens my ability to represent the people of St. Michael as a member of City Council.