Suggest a Question, Commentary on Conflicts, and Setting a New Standard

This June’s City Council election is the culmination of a nearly two-year discussion on how we do things at the City level and ultimately, what we want our community to look like in the future.

But here’s the thing about elections — the results we get are only as good as the information about the candidates you the voters have when you head to cast your ballot. In other words, the more you know about each candidate, the more authority you have in shaping the outcomes and direction in Minot.

To that end, The Minot Voice will be facilitating a candidate question and answer forum designed to help you learn more about each person running. However, if you’re a regular reader, you may be wondering about a pretty big conflict. The most vocal participant on and administrator of The Minot Voice is also a candidate in the election.

To manage that conflict while still hoping to deliver an as-unbiased-as-possible resource for you the reader, we’re excited to announce an editorial review board made of respected local citizens who’ll assist us in developing a Minot-focused set of questions that will be put forward to each candidate. If you’re curious about who those folks are, here you go:

Jim Maxson
Mr. Maxson is a long-time Minot attorney and former state Legislator. He’s also a former Chair of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party.

Pam Karpenko
Ms. Karpenko is the owner-operator of Mainstream Boutique in downtown Minot and an organizer of Local 1st Minot, a non-profit initiative focused on supporting Minot owned businesses. Ms. Karpenko also serves on the City’s Planning Commission.

Ryan Ackerman
Mr. Ackerman is the President/CEO of Ackerman Estvold Engineering; he also serves as the Project Administrator for the Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Project.

Again, the role we’ve asked of these individuals is to help us develop a set of questions that allow you the reader get a picture of each candidate through their answers. We’re hopeful that it will be valuable to you.

Beyond the Forum…

Beyond the question and answer forum, we’ve also created campaign platform page for each candidate. We’ll introduce you to that concept in due time once candidates have an opportunity to improve their pages. And we’ve also invited each candidate to become an ongoing contributor to the regular content on The Minot Voice. Each has been offered full publishing authority, and we’re hopeful they’ll begin contributing to the commentary you find here on The Minot Voice.

Let’s Set a New Standard of Political and Community Discourse

And a couple of final thoughts we’re hoping everyone (readers and candidates) will keep in mind: we’ve all just experienced one of the most contentious national election cycles in history. Let’s aim to treat each other better with our local politics than we did with our national politics. Let’s assume that though may differ on past decisions and future directions — we all want the best for Minot. In other words, let’s put the ‘polite’ back in politics!

With that, we’d love to know what questions you have for our City Council candidates. Use the form or the comment section below, and we’ll pass your suggestions along to our question moderators.

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Josh Wolsky

Editor and Publisher of TheMinotVoice, Developer of the #ForMinot Network,  Co-Host of #GoodTalk Minot, Advocate and Friend of the Souris River, Former City Alderman, and clearly -- all things #MakeMinot. Go ahead, don't wait for permission!

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