Skaar likely to be reelected, Hoffman and Olson likely winners of open school board seats
Updated vote totals as of 4:15 p.m. Nov. 5:
Christopher Seedorf: 2,077 votes, 7.58%
Angie Hoffman: 5,608 votes, 20.46%
Neal Skaar: 6,578 votes, 24%
Mary Elizabeth Harty: 4,045 votes, 14.76%
Kalli Rittenhouse: 2,103 votes, 7.67%
Jerry Collins: 1,836 votes, 6.7%
Bruce Olson: 5,092 votes, 18.58%
The Albert Lea Area Schools board will see two new faces represented on the board as well as one incumbent to fill the three positions that were up for grabs in the 2020 election.
Neal Skaar, the lone incumbent in the field of seven candidates, was the top vote getter with 6,407 votes or 24.05% of the vote. Angie Hoffman and Bruce Olson took the second and third spots, garnering 5,423 votes or 20.36% and 4,964 votes or 18.63% of the votes, respectively.
About 10,000 absentee ballots and mail-in ballots had reportedly been counted thus far as of Tuesday, with the rest to be counted Wednesday.
“I’m gratified to hear the voters voted for me,” Skaar said. “It’s a humbling sort of a thing… My concerns haven’t changed. I think our district does a fine job and we need to continue doing a fine job.”
Skaar said the area that especially interests him is providing students with an opportunity to pursue courses and studies that will prepare them for something other than a four-year college. Skaar also expressed disappointment in the operating referendum not passing and made it a point of emphasis to try and get one passed next year.
Skaar was a teacher in the district for 46 years and has been involved with the wrestling team in some capacity since 1968.
Hoffman said she is excited to get started on the board, to learn as much as possible and listen to the community and serve them.
“I’m excited to serve and I want to thank all who have supported me and trusted me with their vote, especially with such a strong group of seven candidates,” Hoffman said.
A lifelong resident of the Albert Lea area, Hoffman is a member of the Lakeview Lions Club, a volunteer at the Humane Society of Freeborn County and treasurer for the Freeborn County Republican Party.
Olson, a graduate of Albert Lea High School, also said he’s excited to get started with work on the school board.
“I’d like to thank all the people that voted for me,” Olson said. “I’ll do my best to do what’s right for the kids, the students and the people of District 241. I’m excited to get started.”
Olson said he didn’t have any immediate goals for the board, but will take on the issues as they come.