Otsego mayor: Jacob Denman

Jacob Denman

Jacob Denman

Age: 31

Address: 14760 92nd Circle Northeast

Family: Wife Stacy and goldendoodle puppy, Tenny

 Education: Criminal Justice St. Cloud State University

1. Briefly summarize your personal background and qualifications.

Currently I work for a bank as a Senior Financial Crime Investigator where I specialize in combating money laundering, terrorist financing and complex financial crimes and I own a server hosting business that provides hosting solutions to the small business and entertainment sector. Prior to this I worked in law enforcement for Crystal Police Department and for Stearns County Sheriff’s Office while in College. In both my personal and professional life, I am very competitive, I always strive to learn more, do better and win.

2. What is your biggest accomplishment in public life?

 I volunteered for upwards of 15 years to the city of St. Louis Park starting at a young age as a Police Explorer, as I grew older I joined the department as a Reserve Police Officer and an explorer advisor guiding youth, acting as a mentor, and teaching them valuable life skills. I think one of the best services you can provide to a community is educating the next generation. I am super proud to see the successful young adults that came through that program and was honored to give back in the ways that I could.

3. What is your vision for the city of Otsego? How would you describe your leadership style?

 Otsego is a super attractive place to live and work, and is on track to see steady growth and continued increased property values. My vision for Otsego is to guide the city through the upcoming growth, attract quality businesses to our community and build up a city that residents, businesses and employees and thrive in.

I am a natural leader. I was taught at a young age that the best leaders, always lead by example. As mayor, I will make sounds decisions, based on facts and what is ultimately best for the residents of our city.

4. What are your top three priorities if you are elected?

 If elected my top priorities will include absorbing input from the community and city staff to identify our strengths and weaknesses as a city, we need to take that information and act on it with short and long term plans. Secondly, I seek to make sure Otsego attracts quality and mutually beneficial businesses to the community. Finally, I want to make sure the city stays fiscally responsible, we need to keep taxes low and manage our budget accordingly.

5. What decision of the Otsego City Council have you liked most and why? What decision of the Otsego City Council have you liked least and why?

 Seeing a potential Otsego Fire department, if I recall the council received a grant to build/start the planning for that project, I like to see the city using these types of grants and a nearby fire department will likely increase the safety and security of our residents while at the same time saving on homeowner insurance. I can’t identify a specific Otsego council decision that I liked least, I think a prime example of poor city council action would be like the decisions made by Minneapolis council this year, decision were made without proper planning and resulted in mostly disaster.

6. How would you rate the level of collaboration and partnership with the Elk River Area School District and or Wright County? What do you see as opportunities for increased collaboration between either of the two or both?

There is always room for collaboration, the possibilities include pooled resources and a better outcome. I am not aware of any missed opportunities here but as Mayor I will make sure the dialog is open and productive.

7. What experience do you have working with large budgets? What would be your approach to budgeting for the city? What city services would you consider reducing to balance a budget or cover new expenditures deemed necessary or important?

I have not managed a city’s budget before but, my current employment as a Senior Financial Crime Investigator for a bank and a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (ACAMS) makes me a skilled forensic accountant. My specialty is working the most complex financial cases and my skills include pouring through heaps of complex and intentionally convoluted financial data, identifying outliers and understanding an entity’s financial situation. I doubt we have a specific city service that needs to be reduced at this time, however if one did I would seek input from experts and the community and make an educated decision.

8. What do you see as the most significant changes to Otsego in the last 10 years, and what do you hope could be said about Otsego in another 10 years?

Clearly the biggest changes in the past 10 years has been the city’s growth and development. That growth and development is going to continue and we need to make sure the city can keep up. I hope when people look back at the next 10 years residents talk about how great of a place Otsego is to live, raise a family, send kids to school and to work. I hope people want to move to Otsego, a place where the city offers residents the services they desire, without overbearing regulation, low taxes and excellent property values.  

Load comments