Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, Nov. 19, 2001

Write-in saw need and got elected to LP school board

By Ryan Gueningsman

Lester Prairie Police Officer Robert Carlson noticed that only two of the three open positions on the Lester Prairie School Board had been filed for.

He decided to make it known to residents that he would be willing to serve and jump in should he be elected as a write-in candidate.

Carlson did just that ­ winning the third spot on the LP school board with 208 votes Nov. 6.

"I believe in our school system, and my kids will have to go to this school eventually, so I decided to take some initiative and go for it," Carlson said.

One thing that he feels helped him get votes was his view on the consolidation issue.

"I really believe that, with the growth we are going to have, we can stand on our own," Carlson said.

Another thing Carlson wishes to look at is why so many kids are leaving the district and open-enrolling.

Originally from Hawley, Minn., Carlson attended Moorhead State University, and graduated in 1995 with a BA degree in criminal justice.

He has been a police officer in various towns, including a stint in Clay County (Fargo-Moorhead area), Brownton, and a part-time basis with the McLeod County Sheriff's Department.

Carlson is now a member of the Lester Prairie Police Department, and is looking forward to the future with that department.

Carlson was elected to a four-year term which begins at the turn of the year.

"I really do value education so much, it really seems that to get a good job you have to have a four-year degree. If the people I am serving want something looked at ­ I'll do it. Even if I don't agree with it, I will look at things objectively and openly," Carlson said.


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