County’s IT director announces bid for District 2 seat

Published 6:12 am Tuesday, May 10, 2022

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A lifelong Freeborn County resident who has worked in both city and county governments for more than 30 years announced his candidacy  last week for the District 2 Freeborn County commissioner seat.

Scott Woitas

Scott Woitas, who has been the IT director at Freeborn County since 2008, previously worked for the city of Albert Lea from 1991 to 2008 in the engineering department. Prior to that, he worked from 1978 to 1991 at Jones, Haugh & Smith as a technician and surveyor. 

He said he has thought about running for office for a few years, and with his retirement happening next year at some point, he thought it would be a good time to do so. 

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The announcement comes after current District 2 Commissioner Dan Belshan last month announced he will not seek reelection after about 24 years on the board. 

Woitas, 61, said during his career he has worked alongside county and city employees, as well as outside agencies including the Shell Rock River Watershed District, the state, the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the ARMER radio system and local area township fire departments. 

“I’ve got the knowledge and I’ve got the contacts,” he said. 

He said in the 1980s he worked with the townships to put together their township road plats through Jones Haugh & Smith and helped program all of the radios for area fire departments and ambulance systems in the county when the county implemented the ARMER radio system. 

He also combined the city and county under one IT department. 

His goal as commissioner would be to look at making Freeborn County more efficient, exploring how it can share more resources with the city of Albert Lea and eliminate

 duplicate services.

Woitas said if he is elected, he will retire Jan. 1 from his full-time position, and if he does not win, he will retire a little later next year.  

Woitas is married to his wife, Kim, and has two daughters, Brie Ann Tubbs and Brooke Nicole Gulbrandson, who recently died, along with four grandchildren. 

He has a small acreage and also has some background in farming, doing a small amount of farming on his own and helping out other farmers.