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Pierson

Waconia High School teacher and Waconia Park Board member Carl Pierson has announced his candidacy for a spot on the city council representing Ward 2.

“There are several reasons I am running, but chief among them is to ensure our residents are truly represented when major decisions about Waconia’s future are being made,” Pierson said in a press release. “My goal is to help all of our citizens, both established and new, feel more connected to our community. I believe government works best when citizens are informed and involved. I will actively encourage and empower more people to participate in the process.”

Pierson has been a part of the community since 2011. He teaches government and criminal justice and led the Wildcat girls’ basketball program for eight seasons. In addition to his role on the park board, Pierson serves on the Carver County Sheriff Citizens Advisory Council. He is also the executive director of the Minnesota Girls Basketball Coaches Association.

“I pursue this position with no pet projects and no axe to grind. I simply and sincerely want to see the will of Waconia’s residents represented. The best way to be sure I am doing that is to regularly engage with our community.”

Pierson pointed to social media and email as a way he hopes to augment the in-person conversations he has already started to have. “Obviously there are pitfalls to the platforms, but technology has afforded us the tools to get fast, direct, feedback before big decisions are made. Especially at the local level, it makes sense to take advantage of that.”

The candidate also outlined a specific plan to make it easy for citizens to offer their input. He calls it the “Neighborhood Ambassador Program”.

“I am asking for residents in each of Waconia’s Ward 2 neighborhoods (Legacy, Crosswinds, most of historic downtown, Sierra, Waterford, and Windmill Creek just to name a few) to sign on as a ‘neighborhood ambassador’. I recognize some people are quite content to keep clear of city government. However, interested residents will find it easy to get involved. Being an ambassador would entail receiving an email when there is an important vote or a big expenditure coming on the council agenda. The email would offer a brief outline of the issue, then ask the simple question ‘What do you and your neighbors think?”

“The input I receive from our ambassadors is a way I can be certain the vote I cast on the council is an accurate representation of what Ward 2 wants,” Pierosn said. “Of course, good ideas aren’t limited to residents on the east and south sides of our city. For that reason, I would welcome any interested resident to become a ‘neighborhood ambassador’ and I would include them in all communication as well.”

To learn more about Carl Pierson or to sign up to be a neighborhood ambassador, residents are encouraged to visit votepierson.com.

“After 20 years of trying to inspire my students to get involved in government, the time has come for me to practice what I preach,” Pierson said. “I look forward to visiting with residents about ways we can make Waconia better.”

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