The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will elect commissioners for individual districts, and Twin Cities Daily Planet is offering you an opportunity to interact with the candidates in a direct and unique way. We sent out email invitations asking the candidates to supply a brief bio, and answer the following question: “What would be your top three priorities as member of the Minneapolis Park Board?”
For at-large candidates for Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board candidates, click here.
District candidates for Park Board are:
District 1 – Liz Wielinski
District 2 – David Luce and John Olson
District 3 – Said Maye and Scott Vreeland
District 4 – Bobby Davis and Anita Tabb
District 5 – Stephanie Musich
District 6 – Brad Bourn and Joshua Neiman
Read the bios that they provided, and their answers to the question, posted below in alphabetical order, and then it’s your turn to ask a question. Post your questions as comments, either using Facebook or our in-house commenting system, and the candidates will give you their replies.
We will continue to update the site with the candidates’ information as it’s received. See the bios and replies of those who responded first below, and check back for updates as other candidates respond.
(Please note that while all candidates registered as Park Board candidates are welcome to participate, we were only able to send invitations to candidates who had valid email addresses listed. If you are a candidate running in this race and you did not receive an email invite, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com so that we can include you in the forum. The more the merrier!)
Scott Vreeland: I am honored to be a Park Commissioner. I have served for two terms on The MPRB and also serve on the Saint Anthony Falls Heritage Board, The Minneapolis Riverfront Partnership, and am a Commissioner of the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization and the Minneapolis Tree Advisory Commission.
Scott Vreeland’s Top Three Priorities: Focus resources on a well maintained park system. Address issues of aging infrastructure especially in neighborhood parks. Use the Comprehensive plan as guidance for maintenance of natural areas and boulevard trees.
We have the number one park system in the county, but it is a large system that needs investment in our infrastructure and in some of the missing pieces in making the park system serve all our neighborhoods. We have great opportunities to improve the habitat, ecological services and water quality in our park system.
2. Focus on new strategies of community engagement, including greater transparency and information that is posted online, outreach strategies, and clarity about our processes and procedures. Enhance our communications and relationships with communities, media, agencies, and partners.
Our connections and communications need to include work on cultural competencies and long term relationships with our diverse communities. We are including those skills systematically. We also need to embrace the work on our new website and social media as opening the doors to detailed information about our work and processes.
3. Assure that basic services and programs remain accessible, community based, and equitable. Reaffirm the importance of outdoor activities for children.
Much work still needs to done in evaluating our programs in terms of outcomes and assessing the needs of our diverse communities.
I have loved the opportunity to work with the National Park Service, Wilderness Inquiry and the Mississippi River Fund in getting 40,000 kids on the Mississippi River.
There are great opportunities to connect kids to nature in our urban parks. Visit http://scottvreeland.net for more information.