Herald Journal - Voters' Guide '08

One race in Meeker County; otherwise unopposed judges fill ballot

Each election, voters fill out ballots that are filled with a list of judgeships available.

Most judges in district court are appointed by the governor; however, a handful of them are elected or challenged when they run as incumbents, and true races are generally few and far between.

There is one race in District 8, which covers Meeker County – a race between Glen (Jake) Jacobsen and Randall Slieter featured in Meeker County (District 8). Voters in these counties will help decide who serves as judge in district court there.

One race in the Eighth District (Meeker)

In Meeker County, there is a race between Glen “Jake” Jacobsen and Randall Slieter.

A profile on Glen “Jake” Jacobsen

Jacobsen of Bird Island serves in Renville District Court. “If you do the crime, you should do the time,” Jacobsen says on his web site.

“I believe that punishment must fit the crime. It must be harsh enough that the perpetrator and potential criminals will become educated by the punishment experience. Treatment or counseling, along with community service, restitution, fines and apologies may be a component of probation, but they should not be an entire sentence.”

Jacobsen says the justice system can do much better at supporting the work of law enforcement by punishing perpetrators of criminal activity.

The Court must also acknowledge that Victims have rights. Too often Victims of crimes leave the Court believing that they were not heard or that Justice was not done in their case.

Jacobsen has been an attorney and prosecutor for 21 years.

He has also been a county attorney’s office representative to the Mower County Board of Commissioners, served on the Planning Commission and Board of Adjustment. advised Commissioners, Boards, elected officials and County Department Heads (County Auditor, Recorder, Sheriff and Treasurer) on various topics including: The Law and Legal Process, Regulatory Guidelines, Policies and Procedures, Contracts, Planning and Zoning, Personnel and Open Meeting standards.

He has also assisted in the preparation of the County Attorney’s Office Annual Budget. Managed the Office’s Facilities Vendors (PCs, Software, Copiers/Fax Machines, Furnishings). Reviewed and approved monthly billings and ensured the completeness of the departmental Law Library.

Jacobsen’s web site is: www.glenjacobsen.com

A profile of Randall Slieter

Judge Randall Slieter of Olivia serves in Renville County. He attended Hamline University School of Law, and was former president of the Twelfth District Bar Association. He is also a member of Supreme Court Advisory Committee on the general rules of practice from 1998 to the present.

He’s been on the board of directors for Southwestern Technical College and a member of the Olivia Kiwanis.

His web site is www.judgeslieter.com

Incumbents without opposition

The following are incumbents who are running unopposed as judges in the fall election.


Assistant Chief Judge Steven Drange of Litchfield serves in Meeker County. He graduated from the William Mitchell College of Law in 1974. In the past, he has been the city attorney for Litchfield, Grove City, and Darwin.

He has been part of the Litchfield Wrestling Club, Ducks Unlimited, and is a frequent lecturer at local schools and senior citizen organizations.

Michael Thompson of Litchfield serves in Kandiyohi County. He attended the William Mitchell College of Law, and practiced law for many years. He has been on the board of directors for the Meeker County Law Library, a member of the Litchfield Rescue Squad and Litchfield Baseball Association, as well as a coach for Litchfield Legion Baseball.

Peter Hoff of Breckenridge serves in Wilkin County. He graduated from the University of Minnesota and received his juris doctorate from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1967.

Jon Stafsholt of Glenwood serves in the Eighth District. He taught law-related undergraduate classes at the University of Minnesota (Morris Campus), Alexandria Technical College, Fergus Falls Community College, and Willmar Community College. He was named “District Judge of the Year” in 1999 by the Minnesota District Judges Association for community outreach efforts.

David Mennis serves in Swift County. He received his education at William Mitchell College of Law, and had a private practice from 1985 to 2000.