There are four open seats on the Fort Pierre City Council with a municipal election set for Tuesday, April 13.

Three of the council’s six seats would normally be up for election this year. City councilman Mike Weisgram previously relinquished his ward three seat in order to be a state representative for District 24. Randy Seiler was appointed by Mayor Gloria Hansen to complete the year. Seiler must officially run to continue in that seat for the next year, and he is being challenged by Rick Cronin.

Also in ward three, incumbent Todd Bernhard is running unopposed for his two-year seat.

In ward one, incumbent Greg Kenzy is being challenged by Brady Gaer.

Callie Iversen is running unopposed for the two-year term in ward two. She will take over the council seat currently held by Bob Ricketts, who decided to not run again.

Voter registration for the upcoming Fort Pierre municipal election closes at 5 p.m. March 29. If not registered, you forfeit being able to vote in this election. People can check if they are registered by visiting the state’s voter information portal at sdsos.gov, or by calling the Stanley County auditor at (605) 223-7780.

In the city of Fort Pierre, there are three wards, with two representatives for each ward. Each council member’s term is for two years. Geographically, ward one covers the southern one-sixth the city. Ward two is approximately the middle two-sixths of the city. And ward three is the approximately northern half of the city.

Keeping in mind that people/families move and populations fluctuate, the current population of Fort Pierre is 2,329. As of March 15, there are 1,633 registered voters in Fort Pierre. Each ward is supposed to contain very similar numbers of registered voters as the other wards. Ward one has 452 registered votes, ward two has 505, and ward three has 679.

Ward boundaries are adjusted every 10 years, with 2022 being the next adjustment year, based off the results of the United States Census, according to the auditor’s office.

The Capital Journal will be conducting a Q&A with each of the candidates. The first, with ward two candidate Callie Iversen, is below. Look for the rest of the candidates in upcoming reports.

Why are you running for any office?

“I am civic-minded and offer my experiences as a private business owner, and a dedicated volunteer. I am passionate about the history and heritage of Fort Pierre, as well as the citizens of our community. We are a diverse municipality and I want to ensure all of our community members are represented and protected,” Iversen said.

Why are you running for this public office?

“As a member of the Fort Pierre Tourism and Promotion Council, I have been responsible for organizing numerous events in Fort Pierre. Over the years, I have witnessed the vast development our community has experienced. I have been involved in future development conversations, and recognize how the future of Fort Pierre impacts each person individually, as well as the collective community. As a city council member, I can contribute to the positive changes, while supporting the traditional heritage unique to Fort Pierre,” Iversen said.

What experience do you have that makes you a good candidate?

“I have served my community in numerous capacities over the years. I understand the importance of communication and collaboration required for this position. I have supported our community through my volunteer activities by organizing and promoting events (Zonta Vendor and Craft Show Chair, Fort Pierre Trader Days). This experience is evidence of the organizational abilities I have to offer the community,” Iversen said.

What talents do you bring to the table?

“As a Certified Public Accountant, I maintain a strong moral compass for fiscal responsibility and accountability. I am a critical thinker, who is resourceful, and I hope to bring a fresh perspective to city government. I am persistent by nature and dedicated to seeing tasks through to completion,” Iversen said.

What do you believe are the most important or controversial future policies of the city?

“I would like to see more emphasis placed on ordinance enforcement. Safety in our community is the top priority for everyone and I want to ensure this issue stays in the forefront of all future policies,” Iversen said.

What city current or future policies will you support?

“I will support and contribute to the forward momentum and improved infrastructure of Fort Pierre. I will also support policy that maintains and reinforces the long standing community heritage. Safety of our community will always remain a top priority for me. We have a safe and beautiful family oriented community and it’s my goal to maintain this,” Iversen said.

What city current or future policies will you oppose?

“I am not aware of any current or future policies that are offensive or detrimental to ward two. In the event these types of policies present, I vow to be the voice of the community. It’s my goal to represent the members of ward two and support the growth and change that’s important to the community,” Iversen said.

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