County attorney meets challenges

Published 2:06 pm Saturday, October 16, 2010

I have enjoyed serving the people of Freeborn County for the past 19 years and want to continue to work for the residents of this county as your county attorney.

As a lifetime resident of Freeborn County and as a lawyer working for 34 years in this county, there is no other job which satisfies my interest in providing a variety of legal services and which allows me to meet, and work with, a wide cross-section of the residents of this county. I enjoy working with the State Patrol, county deputies, city police officers and employees of state, county and city offices and agencies. I especially enjoy working with the three assistant county attorneys, victim witness coordinator and two legal administrative assistants in the office.

The number of cases prosecuted annually by the Freeborn County Attorney’s Office has significantly increased over the past 19 years. In recent years, state funding to county government and the courts has decreased while mandated requirements to provide legal services and report activity has increased. In addition, recent criminal cases have been uniquely complex and difficult.

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The operating budget of the Freeborn County Attorney’s Office has remained substantially unchanged during the past 19 years. Seven full-time employees work in the County Attorney’s Office. No Minnesota county of similar size has as few employees.

To meet the challenges posed by work and decreased state funding, the Freeborn County Attorney’s Office has been a leader in the use of technology and seeking to improve county attorney office efficiency. The Freeborn County Attorney’s Office is a state leader in e-filing, e-charging, e-disclosure and the use of County Attorney Office software. Online legal research and professional training minimize expense while maintaining services.

A calm demeanor, willingness to make tough decisions, determination to persevere, practical professional experience and discernment, buttressed by excellent professional assistance from the lawyers and legal assistants in the County Attorney’s Office are characteristics that have served me for 19 years as county attorney.

I look forward to continuing to serve the people of Freeborn County as county attorney.

Craig S. Nelson

Freeborn County attorney

Albert Lea