Aaron Kelson, Ph.D.: Eveleth mayoral write-in candidate

Aaron and Roxanne Kelson

Aaron and Roxanne Kelson

My wife Roxanne and I are grateful to live in Eveleth and have been blessed with many friendships in our community. All six of our children are graduates of Eveleth-Gilbert High School where they have been active in athletics, music, and other programs. We respect the administrators, board and staff members, teachers, and coaches who have provided them with such a stellar experience.

In addition, as a business and economics instructor at Mesabi Range College, I have taught hundreds of students from Eveleth since 2002, and from them I have learned much about what they value about their hometown and about what they hope could be improved. Coupled with my career-long interest in rural community development, I believe I can offer the residents of Eveleth a vision that will improve all facets of our community.

Anyone who selflessly serves local municipalities deserves to be commended. Eveleth has a team of public servants who have my support. Given this, why would I offer to be a write-in candidate for mayor?

My decision stems from the belief that we have opportunities to better align our dayto day operational activities in Eveleth with a well-planned strategy for community health and growth. City administration is concerned with keeping our ship running efficiently and smoothly. I believe this is done in Eveleth. However, I think we have opportunities to more purposefully steer our ship. We need to know what we want to be as a community, and we need to understand how we can reach that destination. I have achievable ideas and guiding principles that can help us do so more strategically than we have in the past.

For starters, we need to identify metrics by which we can gauge the strategic success of our decisions. I have several in mind, and I’d like to talk with Eveleth residents about their views of the most important indicators of community health. As we have these discussions, I think it’s essential that no one feels marginalized. Whether a resident has been in Eveleth for generations or has only recently moved in, it’s important for their input to be sought and valued.

Secondly, we need concrete, sustained initiatives to steer us to a better place. Whether I am elected or not, I hope our city government will implement at least four initiatives: 1. Establish an angel investor fund with private investment to support Eveleth residents whose entrepreneurial ideas would expand our community’s economic base. 2. Develop an Invest in Eveleth campaign which recognizes those who make patronage of Eveleth businesses a priority. 3. Create a community service network which encourages residents to give an average of an hour of service a week to help their community. 4. Establish more communication channels to enhance participation in community success so that all residents, including city employees, know they are valued.

If you feel I can help our community, I would appreciate your write-in vote.

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