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Wadena City Council Election: Sartell plans to keep giving back with a return to the council

The general election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. At the close of that election, three residents will be elected to the board. Three candidates are running for the three seats. They include incumbents Mark Lunde and Mayor George Deiss and former councilman Dan Sartell.

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WADENA — Dan Sartell has a long standing history of giving back to the community through service clubs.
He plans to continue to do so with a return to the Wadena City Council.
Find out more about Sartell and his thoughts on current issues below.

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Dan Sartell (2022)
Contributed photo

Tell us about yourself including education, occupation, family, interests, hobbies, etc.
Born and raised in Wadena, one of nine children of Charles and DeLoris Sartell. Graduated WHS in ’73, then earned an Associate’s Degree in communications. Was a radio announcer in Willmar before moving back to Wadena where I was on the air with KWAD-KKWS for about nine years. Worked at Todd-Wadena Electric Co-op in Member Services (4.5 years) and then the Wadena Development Authority and Wadena Housing Authority for close to 10 years. The last 21 years of my career I was marketing manager for Wensman Seed, retiring in 1999. My wife, Donna, and I have been married 46 years and still live in the first home we purchased in 1983. Both of our children Alicia and Adam, graduated from WDC, earned college degrees and are career professionals. Currently active and serving in leadership positions in community organizations: Elks (47 years), Lions (40 years), and Knob Hill Sportsman’s Club. Previously served nine years as a board member of Tri-County Health Care and was on the City Council (1985-1990). I enjoy being outdoors especially hunting (deer, upland game) and golf.
Passionate about grilling and smoking foods. And I’ve donated time and talent to emcee hundreds of fundraising banquets the past 45 years.

What qualities do you possess that will make you a good city council member?
I’ve lived in Wadena nearly my whole life. Having worked here and raised a family here, I feel a strong desire to give back to the community. With my prior experience on the City Council and my tenure as executive director of the Wadena Development Authority and the Wadena Housing Authority, I am familiar with how city government operates. I was fortunate to serve in leadership roles during my work career and understand the need to gather as much information as possible before making a decision.
When trying to solve a problem, I pledge to be accessible and listen to everyone’s input. Wadena’s city government and its various departments are operating quite well right now and I will work to maintain that high level of service. Being retired, I have the time to be an active and engaged member of the council.

What do you see as the strengths of the city?
Wadena’s business economy is strong. The main street is vibrant and we are fortunate to have great retailers and service providers throughout the community. We need to continue our efforts to welcome new businesses and to help existing businesses grow. Wadena’s educational offerings are first rate with the WDC schools and M-State. Tri-County Health Care (soon to be Astera Health) is a vital component to the vitality of our community. Wadena has thriving community organizations filled with caring people willing to give of their time, talent and financial support to make this town an even better place to live.
All of these assets make Wadena great.

Early registration must be completed online or received by mail no later than 20 days prior to Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

What is a challenge facing the city and what would you do about it?
In some areas of town there are livability issues, particularly properties that are not kept up. The city has an ordinance that deals with issues such as tall grass and weeds, garbage/litter, junked vehicles, etc. I want to study our ordinance and the nuisance ordinances of other communities, then propose changes to make our regulations very clear and create a definitive guidance timeline for the property owner or renter. There should be a process whereby a homeowner or renter is educated on basic expectations and given a reasonable timeframe to remedy the issue prior to any enforcement action. Communicating with landlords, especially those who do not live here, is important. Ultimately, enforcement needs to occur when no action is taken or repeat violations occur.

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