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A (very) quick tour of my employment history

Below is a quick overview of my work history. Keep in mind that I always have other things going on as well - being mayor, consulting with colleagues on tax, budget and education reform and analysis, business development and various public policy issues.

In 2016 I joined the State of Minnesota in a unique effort to help resolve conflicts.

Program Coordinator

Minnesota Office of Collaboration and Dispute Resolution

at the State of Minnesota

  • Serve as a mediator / facilitator for Minnesota state agencies dealing with difficult situations
  • Develop training and programs to improve collaboration with state and local government
  • Provide curriculum development and training for an innovative statewide partnership with the League of Minnesota Cities, Association of Minnesota Counties, Association of Minnesota Townships and the Minnesota School Board Association.   
  • Manage grants and other activities for Minnesota's Community Dispute Resolution Programs

Executive Director

Mediation Services for Anoka County

  • Provide leadership to a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to resolving conflicts
  • Responsible for writing grans and fundraising from state, local, corporate and foundations, and for subsequent management of contracts and compliance
  • Responsible for budget, financial and administrative management of nonprofit organization receiving state grants along with their reporting and compliance responsibilities
  • Responsible to a Board of Directors, including all planning, written and oral communications including press.
  • Trained and effective mediator experienced at facilitating discussions and resolving conflicts
  • Strong relationships with the Anoka County Board of Commissioners and local elected officials as well as public sector experience in government relations at the state legislature
  • Directed a strategic planning process for the Board of Directors that produced a comprehensive human resources and Board policy book., fiscal stability plan and board development goals.


An ongoing activity, I've consulted for public, non-profit, and private sector customers seeking innovative strategic planning, public sector research & analysis, and workforce development services. Examples of projects:

  • Provided marketing and business development services to high technology companies, including a focus on corporate sponsorship activities with IBM in Minnesota
  • Assisted school districts with research and analysis on their efficiency, performance and the need for possible levy or consolidation efforts
  • Identified opportunities for improving the delivery of education and training services and for building stronger relationships between business and education (a Ford Foundation project).

Vice President, Business Development

Avenet Web Solutions

  • Responsible for identifying financial partners and sponsors to strategically develop new markets for software products
  • Built the relationships and strategies necessary to successfully partner with public and private sector organizations to finance software development of mutual benefit to both parties, such as the League of Minnesota Cities, United Way, and MnSCU.
  • Manage and lead sales and marketing staff.

Assistant Commissioner

Minnesota State Planning Agency

  • Governor Perpich appointed position that directed efforts to encourage the development of partnerships among local, state, and federal governments. Responsibilities included directing the work of 14 planning and program evaluation professionals and managing an annual budget of approximately $2 million, and key point person for the Governor's annual capital bonding bill for the MN Legislature
  • First manager to be awarded agency's Clara B. Ueland Innovation Award for improving efficiency and services within government and for contributing to an environment of creativity, efficiency, and effectiveness. Recognized for effectively motivating and leading professional employees while creating a positive work environment
  • Served as a key policy liaison between the governor, legislature, and state agencies. Member of the Fiscal Policy Group that continuously analyzed all aspects of budget and financial information to strategically plan for the state's future, working with Finance and Revenue commissioners, State Budget Director, and State Economist.

Deputy Director

Agricultural Utilization Research Institute (AURI)

  • Responsible for the development and implementation of a strategy to promote the organization to the state legislature and other key constituencies
  • Developed budget, identified and pursued revenue partnerships, represented organization with government, business and academic communities, managed internal operations (including staff and multiple facilities across state in Marshall, Crookston, Waseca, Morris and St. Paul
  • Direct the communication and information system/website priorities and staff to achieve organizational goals and objectives
  • Directed the ongoing strategic planning efforts of the organization and supported the Board of Directors.
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