Write-in candidate launches county commission campaign

Zach Raknerud

A third candidate has launched a write-in campaign for the Ward County Commission.

Zach Raknerud, Minot, announced he will be seeking write-in votes in the June 11 primary to advance to the general election in November.

Write-in candidates need at least 300 votes and must finish in the top six. Currently, there are five candidates for three seats. Current commissioner, Shelly Weppler, of rural Minot and Jedidiah Rader of Ryder filed and will be on the ballot. Miranda Schuler of Minot recently announced her write-in campaign. Commissioner Jim Rostad of rural Minot did not file for his seat, thinking other candidates might step up, but when that didn’t happen, he decided to run as a write-in. Even with other candidates now in the race, Rostad said he is continuing with his write-in campaign.

Raknerud is a sales manager for a distribution company. He previously ran for the state Legislature and Minot City Council.

“People have to get to know you before you end up getting elected to an office. I want to make a good difference so I am going to keep trying,” he said.

Raknerud said he has witnessed pressing issues in the past year with regard to youth in crisis, which has been a factor in his decision to run for county commission.

“That was probably one of the main motivations is seeing first hand that if there’s ‘crisis youth’ right now that get denied placement at a private organization and don’t have another placement available, they’re sleeping in the Ward County building,” Raknerud said. “That doesn’t feel right to me. I’ve talked with other county people across the state, and there’s better ways to do it.”

He also would like to see Ward County partner with the City of Minot and others to investigate solutions to the childcare shortage.

“I just want to bring fresh perspectives,” he said. “We just need new voices.”


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