1st Ward race gets 4th candidate

Published 12:21 pm Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A fourth man threw his hat in the ring Tuesday for the vacant 1st Ward Albert Lea City Council seat.

George Gillespie

George Gillespie, 55, of 327 Lloyd Place, joins candidates John Schulte V, 34, of 212 Lee Place, Jeffrey McLaughlin, 48, of 210 Fairview Drive, and Stuart Olson, 86, of 401 E. Richway Drive, for the seat.

This is Gillespie’s fourth time to run for public office. Most recently, in 2010, he sought the mayoral seat.

He said he never thought he stood to win against former 1st Ward Councilor Vern Rasmussen — who is now mayor — but now that the 1st Ward seat has opened up, he thought he’d give it a try.

“I want to help be a part of the brain that’s going to solve the problems that we are facing right now,” he said.

Gillespie, who moved to Albert Lea in 1987, is the owner of The Web Room, a computer service center on Marshall Street. He said prior to operating this business, he ran a landscaping company for seven years.

He said he has also been involved with the Albert Lea Hockey Association during the last 15 years in fundraising opportunities, including pull tab and bingo operations.

He is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 15024 and has volunteered on several occasions in community projects, he said.

Filing continues through the end of the business day today with City Clerk Shirley Slater-Schulte.

Cost of filing is $5.

To file for the seat, a person must be eligible to vote in Minnesota, be 21 years old at the time he or she would begin in office and have lived in the 1st Ward for at least 30 days before the special general election.

Because four people have already filed for the seat, a special primary election will be March 15 in this race. The special general election will be May 3.

The seat opened after Rasmussen became mayor.