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Larson, as mayor, will tackle our challenges

I was never terribly interested in electoral politics untill recently, but the challenges facing Bemidji and our nation right now have led me to change my view. With that in mind, I would like to encourage people to vote in the primary on Aug 10 and especially to support Dave Larson as a candidate for mayor.

An effective mayor must be a good adminisrator. Dave's experience managing large construction projects in the U.S. and abroad have helped him develop excellent problem-solving skills and the ability to oversee and co-ordinate complex organizations. His contributions to local groups such as the Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Development Authority have shown that he's able to apply these skills in nonprofit settings as well as in the world of business.

Perhaps more important, a good mayor must provide effective leadership by finding out what citizens value and then working as necessary to satisfy their preferences. In this regard, I have a concern that while Bemidji is currently a political jurisdiction and a geographical location, it is not a genuine community. Many people feel themselves to be alienated or marginalized and that group is not limited to native people and college students. This may be the most fundamental challege facing us and Dave Larson is well equipped to help us resolve it.

As a leader, Dave will listen to individuals and groups, seeking people out if necessary to better understand their perspective. More importantly, he will respond to what people tell him, to evidence and the opinions of others. Dave has a strong sense of personal integrity and a character shaped by strongly held principles. It is exactly these principles which lead him to the belief that elected officals should be responsive to citizens.

I encourage you to vote for Dave Larson on Aug 10.

Bob Ley