The candidates have answered a set of questions to provide information to the voters of Sleepy Eye.

Wayne Pelzel, incumbent candidate for Mayor, four-year term.

Biographical information:

I’m proud to be a lifelong resident of Sleepy Eye. I graduated from St. Mary’s High School, earned a BA degree from Southwest Minnesota State University in English, education and coaching and a MS degree in education administration from Minnesota State University.

Describe your qualifications to serve on the city council:

My qualifications include that I served as Park and Recreation Director for the City of Sleepy Eye from 1971 to l977, while teaching and coaching at St. Mary’s High School. I have held numerous leadership positions, that include in l977, I accepted a position as principal at St. Mary’s and served in that position for 24 years. For the last 10 years of my work career, I served as Superintendent of Schools for the Diocese of New Ulm’s 20 schools, while also functioning as the Diocesan Director of Development until 2015, when I retired. During those work years I served as Chairman of the Dyckman Free Library Board during the construction of the new addition to the library. I serve as Chairman of the Lake Improvement Committee which included the last dredging of Sleepy Eye Lake. I am a past president of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, and a past Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus, and held numerous other positions.

While serving as your mayor these past four years I’ve worked to keep taxes reasonable and carefully watched City spending.

Through all these life experiences I’ve learned to value our City employees who are the lifeblood of the services our City returns to its citizens.

What are the top two issues in city government, or in Sleepy Eye in general, that prompted you to run for city council?

The City needs positive leadership. I chose to run for mayor not because of an ulterior motive, but to give back to the community. As a means of giving back, as Mayor I will give priority to these two areas:

•Promote our community and downtown to create a warm and inviting environment that attracts new business and residents.

•Strive to nurture and protect Sleepy Eye Lake.

Andrew Kelton, candidate for Mayor, four-year term.

Biographical information:

I am a 34-year-old father of three girls, two of them twins. I have been married to my wife, Allysa, for seven years. I love Star Wars, reading and learning new skills. I have worked with the Brown County 4-H as well as the Sleepy Eye Lion’s Club. I served on the Strategic Planning Committee for the public school in 2019 and also on the Technology and Advisory Committees for the Traverse des Sioux Library Cooperative.

Describe your qualifications to serve on the city council:

I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography and History. I also have a Master’s in Library Science with a concentration in Archives. I managed the city’s library for almost six years and worked with the public on a daily basis. I was also a school custodian for over a decade. I believe that the custodian is just as important as the CEO. I have also taught and worked in special education. I have attended every city council meeting since 2017 with the exception of one.

What are the top two issues in city government, or in Sleepy Eye in general, that prompted you to run for city council?

The current city administration is not very transparent and open with the public. I intend to change that. As long as I’m not violating the law, you will know what I know.

At this time, Sleepy Eye is not very inclusive to all citizens that live here. Sleepy Eye has a large minority population. All citizens should be approached and brought into conversations regardless of race, wealth, age, etc.