Wellington, Here are the Candidates for the Fire Board Election

Wellington Fire Department

Annie Lindgren | North Forty News

As we digest the results from the Mayor and Trustee candidate election, we must not forget about the upcoming Wellington Fire Protection District Board of Directors Election on May 3, 2022. 

This election is for three directors. The candidates for these three positions, and their bios, are listed below.

Carol Story

“I have lived in Fort Collins since I was three years old and in Waverly for 18 years. My most prized accomplishments are my four grown children and eight grandchildren.

 Growing up, I learned my value system from a strong Christian education, my parents, and from my Grandfather, a County Attorney and one of the most honorable people I have ever known. I learned to always tell the truth, even if it got me in trouble, and always do the right thing, even if it was the hardest thing. Those values have served me well throughout life and as the owner of several businesses such as a livestock auction company, a large cattle and hay ranch, a gift store, a professional horse trainer/instructor, a horse show judge, a medical transcriptionist, and certified EMT. I have been a Colorado licensed Realtor for the past 26 years. 

 I believe in giving back to my community. I’ve volunteered as a 4-H leader, and I’ve sat on two Citizen Advisory Boards and the WFPD board. As the Board works through the challenges involving the retirement of our former Chief, hiring an Interim Chief, and the search and selection process of hiring a new Chief, I firmly believe the District will benefit by retaining an experienced Board member who understands the issues and is familiar with the State Statutes governing us as a Colorado Special District.” 

Christine Gaiter

“I’m a conservative Christian and an active member of my church in Loveland. I’m a married mother of 6, and I own an accounting business, so I know how to look at budgets and financial reports. I’m actively involved in Wellington by serving on 2 citizen boards, Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and the Board of Adjustments.

 I am running for the Wellington Fire Protection District Board of Directors because I can bring a new and objective perspective to their finances and operations. With my accounting background, I will make sure your taxpayer money is spent wisely, and the Fire District is not overspending. From the operations perspective, I want to support our firefighters and keep our response times quick in order to protect our community. I’m not afraid to ask the hard questions and find creative solutions. I believe in planning ahead for big projects such as building the new fire station by saving now so we don’t have to take out debt or ask the taxpayers for more money later. 

 To sum it all up, I want to put the safety of the firefighters and residents FIRST while staying in budget.”

 For more info, check out GaiterforFireBoard.com

 David Pierson 

“My name is David Pierson, and I am running for Wellington Fire Protection District board. I currently work for Black Hills Gas Company and have worked for the previous gas companies in Wellington for the past 37 years.

 I am a third-generation Wellington resident, with my mother and father graduating from Wellington High School, my father graduating as All American Athletic. 

 I have served with the Wellington Fire Protection District for 30 years. Have held a variety of offices, including Fire Chief. Growing up in the area, I have watched the town grow and as “the gas man” I’ve been all over the town. 

 As a past board member, we accomplished quite a bit. As a re-elected board member, my priorities would be firefighter safety, public safety, protecting property within the approximate 300 miles of the District, and being fiscally responsible with tax payors’ property tax dollars. I would like to serve again, if you will have me, to improve on previous accomplishments.”

Linda Knaack

“My name is Linda Knaack. I am a Wellington Native and a local business owner.

I have worked with both non-profit and for-profit organizations throughout my professional career. I have earned a Bachelors’s in Accounting and have deep roots in finance and management. 

Before opening and running our local automotive repair shop, I worked helping small businesses with their Simple IRA’s and 401k retirement accounts. In addition, I have held jobs in Human Resources and benefit planning. I currently serve on the Planning Commission with the Town of Wellington.

Personally and professionally, I have witnessed the Fire Department’s impact on our community. I have seen the fantastic staff in action at my home with loved ones and as a witness of the recent house fire in our community. I’m grateful for our first responders’ work and would be honored to give back to our team. 

My husband, John, and I have two adult children, Sara and Will. Sara helps us manage our business, and Will serves as a Marine in the United States Marine Corps.”

Jason Meyers

“My name is Jason Meyers, and I am running for Wellington Fire Protection District board. I currently work for Platte River Power Authority as a mechanical maintenance planner. I am a captain and an EMT for the fire department on sight. I have been with Platte River Power Authority for 16 years and have worked with Wellington Fire for 20 years. 

I moved to Wellington in 1997, where I purchased my first house. Becky and I started our family. We have two girls, and they were all involved in the fire department up until I retired from the fire department.

I have served with the Wellington Fire Protection District for 15 years. I have held the offices of Firefighter, EMT, Driver Operator, Fire training officer Lieutenant, and Captain.

As a board member, I understand the responsibility that comes with this position. Protecting life and property for the town of Wellington and being responsible with their tax dollars. My goal is to make Wellington one of Colorado’s best and most efficient fire departments.” 

 Joshua Dreher

“Joshua Dreher moved to Wellington, CO, in March 2002 and started a family in this beautiful town while working as a Deputy with the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office. Shortly after moving here, he started his venture as a volunteer firefighter with Wellington Fire Protection District after being recommended by several volunteer firefighters to join the department. While volunteering as a firefighter, he was also a Larimer County Dive Rescue Team member. Josh was a Wellington Fire Protection District member for approximately 4 years before accepting a firefighter position with Eaton Fire Protection District. 

Josh advanced his knowledge from firefighter to Engineer and then onto an Operational Lieutenant position. As a Lieutenant, Josh gained valuable experience on how a fire department operates behind the scenes, became a member of the volunteer pension board, and worked with the administration on operational budgets, equipment, apparatus, and firefighter safety. Josh held this role until his retirement from volunteer firefighting in January 2019. 

Josh spent many years volunteering for several different volunteer public safety departments and has a passion for the community and making sure the citizens are safe, and concerns are addressed. Josh’s passion is still in public safety, and he feels his experience and knowledge would greatly benefit the citizens of the Wellington Fire Protection District as a Board of Director member.”

Susan Reed

“My name is Susan (Sue) Reed, and I am running for a seat on the Wellington Fire Protection District Board of Directors. I have lived in the Wellington Fire Protection District for over 35 years. I was a volunteer firefighter/EMT for 10 years and understood the needs of the Fire District from the perspective of both residents and firefighters. As a resident, I expect the District to use its tax revenue wisely, and I expect Emergency Services to be available when needed. As a former firefighter, I understand the need for safe vehicles, compliant personal protective equipment, and extensive training to maintain the skills to respond to various emergencies safely.

  As a current Board member, I am familiar with the duties, requirements, and procedures of a Special District. I have worked with the rest of the Board to meet the increasing emergency service needs of the Fire District during a time of rapid growth. The District has been proactive and has anticipated the response needs of the Town of Wellington and the unincorporated areas of the District by providing the necessary emergency response vehicles and facilities and by hiring full-time professional firefighters. If re-elected, I will continue to support the use of District resources to provide the equipment and training our firefighters need to safely provide outstanding emergency services to the community.”

 

There will not be any ballots mailed out for this election. Rather, to vote, you visit the Polling Place at Station 16, at 8130 3rd St. Wellington, CO., on May 3 between 7 AM and 7 PM. 

The Wellington Area Chamber of Commerce is hosting the 2022 Election Candidate Forum Thursday, April 21, from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM, a Candidate Forum held at the Leeper Center (3800 Wilson Avenue). 

For more information, visit http://www.wfpd.org/board-of-directors-election-information. 

Photo Courtesy of Wellington Area Chamber of Commerce

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