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Fairmont man latest to enter District 23A race

By Staff | Feb 16, 2020

Michael Sukalski, of Fairmont, announced he is running for the District 23A seat just last week.

Another Republican candidate has announced intentions to run for the District 23A representative seat which opened up due to the vacancy being created by the retirement of Rep. Bob Gunther of Fairmont at the end of the year.

Michael Sukalski of Fairmont joins three other announced candidates seeking the Republican nomination to the seat.

Sukalski was born and raised on a farm south of Fairmont. He is a graduate of Granada-Huntley-East Chain Schools, as well as South Dakota State University where he studied Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering.

After graduation he worked on the family farm, then at AGCO in Jackson for a number of years. He currently works at Harsco Rail in Fairmont, and has become a licensed professional engineer.

Sukalski says he is passionate about supporting the rural economy, promoting agriculture, and defending agriculture from governmental overreach.

He adds he supports local businesses including child care providers and protecting them from over-regulation so they can grow and create new job opportunities in the area.

Other areas include supporting schools, rural community hospitals, funding for roads and infrastructure for Greater Minnesota outside the of the metro area.

“I believe in pushing back against over-taxation and the runaway spending of our state’s government,” Sukalski says. “And putting more money back into the pockets of hard-working Minnesotans instead of the state’s coffers.”

Other announced candidates for the Republican nomination include:

Bjorn Olson is the mayor of Elmore, a Blue Earth Area Middle School teacher, a captain in command of an Army Reserve unit, and is an active farmer.

He was born in Martin County and raised in Faribault County. He has family roots in the district that go back 135 years.

Olson is a graduate of Blue Earth Area High School and Bethel University in St. Paul.

Shane Schofield is the chairman of the Watonwan County Republican Party. He also chaired the First Congressional District for the Republicans in 2018 when Jim Hagedorn was elected to Congress.

Schofield graduated from Western Dakota Tech, then moved to the Truman area where he has been raising his family on a hobby farm for 12 years.

Tom Nelson, director of economic development for the city of Jackson, has also declared his candidacy. He is an officer in the Minnesota Army National Guard, a past director of the Minnesota American Legion Boys State program, founder of the Jackson Area Young Professionals organization, a member of the Jackson American Legion, Sons of the American Legion and Pheasants Forever.

Nelson grew up in Southwestern Minnesota, working on his family’s farm, and graduated from Bethel University.