In 2022, the following candidates will be on the primary ballot:
About the Candidate: I was born and raised in the City of Anoka. I have a four-year degree from Saint Cloud State University in criminal justice. I have been involved with law enforcement for 21 years—almost 19 years as a licensed police officer. I have worked undercover on narcotics and violent crimes for over three years. For the last ten years, I have served as a Use of Force Instructor, Firearms Instructor, Field Training Officer, and SWAT team member. I married my wife Kyleen almost 12 years and have three children. I am a deacon with Grace Baptist Church. My children participate in American Heritage Girls and Trail life USA and gymnastics. Our family loves to be outdoors, camping, four-wheel riding,gardening, and hunting in our free time.
Important Issues: Playing a more significant role in public safety. My family lives in this community, and I do not want Anoka County to become what Hennepin County has. I plan on being proactive against those who choose to commit a crime—creating a new partnership with elected officials and city and county attorneys by inviting them to ride along once a month and giving the justice system a different view of what is occurring in our neighborhoods and informing other elected officials about the issue they face.
Goals if Elected: Get the leadership to include the Sheriff (me) back into the patrol car for one shift a month. This is currently not done. This will not cost the taxpayers any money.
Host at least two training a month at the Sheriff’s office for staff. This will provide a competent and confident deputy. The Sheriff’s office will receive a few free spots by hosting the training. No cost to the taxpayer.
Get deputies out of the squad cars and into the neighborhoods to speak with the public we serve to create ownership and accountability.
Endorsements: None listed.
About the Candidate: My name is Paul Lenzmeier. I am a 25 year veteran of the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office. I am currently the commander of the patrol division. The patrol division is the largest division of the Sheriff’s Office. I oversee over 90 individuals. I am responsible for providing contracted law enforcement services to 8 of the 21 communities in Anoka County and specialty and supportive service to all of Anoka County. I am a lifelong resident of Anoka County and am married to my high school sweetheart, Danielle, for over 24 years. We have 3 adult kids, Ryan (22), Emily (21) and Joshua (18). We reside in Andover. I earned a Master of Arts degree in Police Leadership from the University of St. Thomas, a Bachelor of Science degree from Metropolitan State University and an Associate in Arts degree in Law Enforcement from North Hennepin Community College. I have attended Northwestern University Center for Public Safety, School of Police Staff and Command as well as the National Command and Staff College, Command Staff and Leadership. Both of these 10-week courses were graduate level. I believe in servant leadership and am passionate about serving Anoka County.
Important Issues: I believe the main issues in this campaign are public safety, hiring and retention and building community relationships and mental health in Anoka County and public safety collaboration. Public Safety is a priority. We must maintain law and order in Anoka County. I have significant experience in maintaining and restoring law and order. The defund the police movement has devastated hiring and retention in law enforcement, we must change the narrative. As Sheriff I will create a positive atmosphere of support for our staff. We will address the response and resources for mental and behavior health services in Anoka County. I will build relationships with our community. I will continue to meet our community where they are to identify concerns and find solutions. I will continue to maintain relationships with all our public safety partners to include our brave firefighters and skilled EMS personnel.
Goals if Elected: As Sheriff, one goal will be to build relationships within our community. I will be intentional about connecting in a meaningful way. I will work diligently to unite our community and ensure we can work together on the challenges facing our community. I will listen and respond to concerns of our community. I will be transparent in the services we provide. We will also ensure Anoka County remains a safe place to live and visit. We will maintain law and order and will work on different ways to keep our community safe. We will ensure we utilize creative ways to provide education and enforcement of laws. We will also be proactive in address mental and behavioral health issues in Anoka County. I will work with parents, loved ones and professionals on creating an advisory board to develop new ways to provide more individualized responses for people in crisis.
Retired Chief Deputy Tom Wells (Anoka County Sheriff’s Office)
Sheriff Tim Leslie (Dakota County)
Pastor Rick Santiago
Retired Commander Shelly Orlando (Anoka County Sheriff’s Office)
About the Candidate: Coon Rapids is my hometown. I graduated from Coon Rapids High School and went off to college. I earned a BA in History from Augsburg University and a MA in Leadership from the University of St. Thomas. I began a career in hotel management, however, I altered my plans after working with police officers who had been our hotel security. I so admired their passion and commitment that I changed my career path to law enforcement.
My first police job was as patrol officer for the City of Robbinsdale. After a short time I caught the break of a lifetime and landed a job as a patrol officer in Coon Rapids. I jumped at the opportunity to come home and spent the next 27 years building a career in the place I was meant to be, performing a job I have always been passionate about. I served in every capacity in the department before being appointed Police Chief in 2011. It was a very challenging job that I absolutely loved!
I am married to Kristin and have two children in college. When not working I enjoy golf, fishing, and sharing good stories with my beloved family and friends.
Important Issues: The most important public safety issues facing Anoka County are crime, traffic safety, and law enforcement officer morale.
We are facing pressure in Anoka County from forces outside our control in neighboring counties. Law enforcement, elected officials, and citizens need to be in sync protecting our County. We have innovative, motivated, professionals like Chief Brian Podany, who is leading the Blaine Police Department in a way that his staff are clearly having a significant positive impact on public safety. I support his department’s approach and look forward to doing everything I can to enhance his vision for protecting Blaine. Success anywhere in Anoka County is success everywhere.
Another significant issue is staff morale. Negative messages elsewhere have damaged morale here. Transparent, highly-trained, ethical law enforcement agencies earn community support, and community support is the fuel needed for exceptional morale. We will continue to earn your support and deliver excellence.
Goals if Elected: Effectively reduce crime and further insulate us from the impact of counties that are so indecisive regarding public safety. I am intolerant of people who choose lawlessness, and Deputies will be empowered to make a difference. Do not misunderstand as I am not saying over-police. I am simply saying we will solve crimes and arrest offenders.
Increase efficiency for our police partners. One of the simplest and most direct ways to help police departments in our county is to reduce the time arresting officers take to get people who victimize others in jail. I will work directly with our detention staff and our police chiefs to realize meaningful time savings.
Keep an eye on costs. We will achieve powerful results while mindful of tough economic times. All heads of departments within the Sheriff’s office will be directed and supported in sharpening their pencils in absolute respect to our taxpayers.
Endorsements: None sought.