BY STARRLA CRAY
WINSTED, MN As Winsted’s new city administrator, Dan Tienter is happy to be working for a busy, growing community.
“I did quite a bit of research on Winsted before I decided to apply for the job,” he said. “I quickly discovered it wasn’t an ordinary town of 2,300 people.”
To get a firsthand feel for the city, Tienter and a friend drove out from St. Paul one day to eat lunch at The Corner Bar and explore some of the local parks.
“After that first visit, I went back to Winsted eight to 10 times,” Tienter said, noting that he was impressed with all the activity going on, such as the industrial park expansion, municipal airport, and Luce Line State Trail development.
Tienter has a background in finance and public administration, and is looking forward to using his skill set to benefit the community.
He grew up in Oak Grove (in Anoka County) and attended college at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks.
At first, Tienter planned to study economics, but soon realized he was more intrigued by his classes about state and local government.
He switched his focus sophomore year, and graduated with a political science major and public administration minor in December 2009.
Tienter then received a scholarship to attend graduate school at the University of North Dakota at no cost, and earned a Master of Public Administration (MPA) in May 2012.
After that, he accepted a position with Dakota County through a nationally-competitive government management fellowship.
He was offered a regular position with Dakota County 10 months later, as a financial management analyst in the physical development division.
“The physical development division has the most interaction with cities, and it includes many of the things cities deal with, as well,” Tienter said. “I decided to focus on finance because it’s the most generally-applicable skill.”
Although Tienter enjoyed his job at Dakota County, he is looking forward to new challenges.
“There are a lot of very exciting things going on in Winsted. . . The project I’m particularly excited for is Kingsley Street, and the trail alongside,” he noted, explaining that it will provide better access to the Luce Line State Trail.
Although Tienter will be busy with Winsted’s various projects, he aims to be responsive to citizen’s immediate needs, as well.
“My door is always open, and I’m happy to help with any issues or questions,” he said.