Jan and Randy
Jan and Randy have been married 35 years. Both are graduates of Bethel University. Jan is an events manager at Bethel University and enjoys her involvement with students, staff, faculty, and campus guests.
Mark and Elissa
Marc is currently serving on active duty in the Marine Corps as a judge advocate. He was recognized as USMC’s Defense Counsel of the Year in 2016, and he served in Iraq from August 2017 to February 2018. Elissa is a human resources analyst for Prince William County.
Micah is a full-time student in the aircraft technician program at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. He works part-time for Delta at the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport.
Elise is in her second year serving with AmeriCorps at Anwatin Middle School in Minneapolis. She loves her 7 th graders!
Lucy is an auditor and had the opportunity to work on the audit team for the cities of Arden Hills and Shoreview. She is in the process of obtaining her CPA license.
Ruby is a three-year-old Boston terrier who enjoys chasing squirrels and her frisbee.
A little more about Randy...
I am a small-business owner with proven leadership experience. I own four UPS Stores in the Twin Cities and thoroughly enjoy the day-to-day work life of serving customers, coaching and investing in a team of employees, and contributing to our local economy. I also train new store owners and managers, and I served for 8 years as the elected chair of an advisory council that represents all 4,400 UPS Store owners nationwide.
My wife Jan and I are Bethel University graduates and have been married 35 years. We’ve lived in Shoreview since 1998, enjoying the same property that belonged to my grandma. We raised our three kids here and love this community we call home! We’ve since gained a daughter-in-law, and we’re also the U.S. home for an international student-turned-daughter. We are fans of the great outdoors and enjoy camping, canoeing, and paddle boarding.
My education includes an MBA and a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Minnesota as well as a BA from Bethel University. I have 14 years of experience as a corporate leader, developing winning business strategies for Pillsbury, Quaker Oats, and Ecolab. I recognize and understand the importance of reliable customer care, vibrant teamwork, perceptive strategic planning, and vigilant budget management. My working career began as a chemical engineer and includes three patents and several new food products (Quaker Instant Oatmeal Cups, for example).
During the past 30+ years, I’ve invested time and leadership in Boy Scout Troop 50; my sons and I earned our Eagle Scout rank in the same troop and under the same scoutmaster! I've also served as chair of the governing board of my church.
In my spare time, I enjoy running and am a heavy user of our local trails and parks and the Shoreview Community Center.
What is your educational background?
I am immersed in a family of educators: my mom, my dad, three of my grandparents, and now both of my sisters. I graduated from Kellogg High School in Roseville. I earned a BA in pre-engineering from Bethel University, a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Minnesota, and a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) from the University of Minnesota.
What is your work background?
I began my career as a research and development engineer for Pillsbury, where I advanced new products and established three patents for the company. I decided that I wanted to work more directly with clients and customers, so I earned an MBA and transitioned to marketing management, first at Pillsbury and later at Quaker Oats and Ecolab.
After the economic downturn following 9/11, I was laid off and unemployed for six months. It was a period of angst and reassessment, but also, in hindsight, one of opportunity. I empathize with those who have gone through a similar gut- wrenching experience.
For the past 16 years, I have been a small-business owner. I began with one UPS Store and one part-time employee. Today I own four stores (Roseville, St. Paul, and two in Minneapolis) and employ about 20 associates. At the request of the Minnesota State Fair, I also operate a UPS Store on the fairgrounds during the fair.
My work as a scientist and small-business owner has sharpened my strengths as a problem solver, communicator, forward thinker, and collaborator. Just as important are the fundamental values of trust and integrity that guide me daily as
I work alongside outstanding employees to serve our customers.
What experiences have prepared you to be a state representative?
My parents deserve credit for modeling a collaborative work ethic an demonstrating the importance of diplomacy in relationships. Both are retired educators. Growing up, I saw how their ease in getting along with others went a long way in navigating rocky situations and establishing goodwill with neighbors, students, colleagues, friends, and family. As an engineering student, I was
trained to assess and solve problems. While that skill has certainly helped in the leadership posts I’ve held in business, scouting, church, and now the Legislature, I’ve come to realize that an aptitude for listening, discussing, clarifying, collaborating, and advancing a common purpose is even more critical to the success of any venture or cause. It is that aptitude I rely on and use every day--in my role as a state representative and in virtually every other area of my life.
After 9/11/2001, Ecolab reorganized in the face of a struggling hospitality market, and I lost my job. For six months I was unemployed. My wife was a stay-at-home mom, and we had three young kids. In hindsight, I am surprisingly grateful for
that season of uncertainty and insecurity because it was formative. It developed in me a level of empathy I didn’t have before. I can identify with those who are experiencing difficulties in their lives. I can identify with those who are searching for something better. I appreciated the people who helped me when I needed it, and I want to pay that forward.
In the spring of 2014, I successfully worked with both Republicans and Democrats at the state capitol to get notary-public reform legislation passed. The process of initiating, establishing, and promoting a legislative bill requires an investment of time as well as good communication, honest collaboration, and the willingness to work tenaciously toward a goal. The experience taught me a great deal about the practicalities of legislative change.
My interest in public service also grew out of my role as the elected chair of an advisory council that represents 4,400 UPS Store owners across the country. The council collaborates and negotiates with our franchisor and with UPS on behalf of store owners. During my tenure on the council (2007-2014), I was able to build rapport with all sides. We worked together for the benefit of our franchise and ultimately for the benefit of our customers. I believe there’s a similar path forward in the Minnesota Legislature that is marked by civility and productivity and leads to safer, healthier, stronger communities across our state. To that end, I will continue my track record of bipartisan legislation and productive, civil dialogue across the aisle. A good idea is a good idea. I support ideas that have merit, regardless of party affiliation.
What qualities do you bring to your service as a state representative?
A strong leadership skill set – I am the Assistant Majority Leader in the Minnesota House of Representatives, where I serve the best interests of the residents in Arden Hills, Mounds View, Shoreview, and Spring Lake Park. I have 14 years of corporate leadership experience and 16 years of small-business leadership. I own 4 UPS Stores and employ 20 employees. I train new UPS
Store owners and have represented owners at the national level. I’ve also held leadership roles at church and in scouting.
An aptitude for working with others to advance a common purpose - As an engineering student, I was trained to solve problems and maximize solutions. While that skill has certainly helped in the leadership posts I’ve held in business, scouting, church, and now the Legislature, I’ve come to realize that an aptitude for listening, discussing, clarifying, and collaborating is even more critical to the success of any venture or cause. It is that aptitude I rely on and use every day--in my role as a state representative and in virtually every other area of my life.
Productivity - I have successfully led and supported many bipartisan efforts, particularly legislation focused on education. I have a tenacious passion to get things done through collaborative processes.
Empathy - After 9/11/2001, Ecolab reorganized in the face of a struggling hospitality market, and I lost my job. For six months I was unemployed. My wife was also unemployed, and we had three young kids. In hindsight, I am surprisingly grateful for that season of uncertainty and insecurity because it was formative. It developed in me a level of empathy I didn’t have before. I can
identify with those who are experiencing difficulties in their lives. I can identify with those who are searching for something better. I appreciated the people who helped me when I needed it, and I want to pay that forward.
Why are you running?
I want to build a strong future for our community and our state, and I want to represent District 42A well in the law-making process. I visit with residents daily, and we share these goals: health, education, opportunity, safety, and help. Residents also want financial security; I’m a moderate who is fiscally responsible. I support our school board and all educators who are daily making a difference in their students’ lives. My collaborative leadership style also reflects the diversity of our district. I believe bringing people together generates the best solutions—that’s my track record in the Legislature and in other areas of service.
Minnesota is known as a “good governance” state. I have and will continue to uphold that reputation by working with legislators on both sides of the aisle for the benefit of District 42A and all Minnesotans.
What are the top challenges your district faces today?
- Affordability and access have improved, but cost transparency is lacking. Elder care and the care of vulnerable adults also demand attention.
- School safety and education. I will continue pursuing robust school safety measures and investments in innovative education.
- I’m ever cognizant of the tax burden on families and individuals. I also want to stop taxing seniors’ social security benefits.
- Distracted driving. This problem is growing. Lives are at stake. I will support tougher laws and advocate for victims.
- Partisan politics. Divisiveness across the nation is toxic. Let’s keep it out of Minnesota. I’m a collaborator seeking common-ground solutions.
What do you see as your main objective as a state representative?
My overarching goal—and highest responsibility—is to carry the collective interests of the people of District 42A to the Capitol. The only way I can do that well is to invest time listening to the people of our community. I have hosted and will continue to host ongoing coffee shop gatherings and town hall style conversations. I visit residents at their door—even in non-election years. I email weekly legislative updates to those who sign up to receive these. I do my best to respond promptly via other communication channels. Contact me at 651.324.0293 (my cell) or randyfor42A@gmail.com.
Who has endorsed you as a candidate?
I am currently endorsed by:
- Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association
- Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
- North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters
- The International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 49
- The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 110
- National Federation of Independent Business
- Housing First Minnesota
- Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life
What’s unique about you?
As I mentioned, I was unemployed for six months. The experience was difficult for the whole family, and I’ll always remember the financial anxiety and stress. In hindsight, I gained a deeper empathy for individuals and families who have also experienced—or are experiencing—the impact of unemployment or underemployment. Each of us is well acquainted with challenges of various forms, and my personal experience remains a vivid reminder of the importance of compassion, decency, and extending a helping hand to others.
I have been fascinated with the Boundary Waters Canoe Area ever since my first visit as a 12-year-old. Some 30+ trips later, including two portages across the Grand Portage, I still count this area as one of our state’s treasures. I value Minnesota’s lakes and rivers as well as its wildlife and many other natural resources, and I understand the importance of conservation and preservation efforts.
Each year I run a marathon. During spring, summer, and fall, I regularly run on our district’s trails, sidewalks, and roads. During the winter, I run on the track at the Shoreview Community Center. I’ve finished 28 marathons. I am not getting any faster, but I hope I’m running smarter!