Editor’s note: Senate District 59 has been represented by an incumbent senator who believes that helping a few friends to gain access to funding is better than collectively working with the whole community. Related stories: School board's approval of $375,000 contract for Al Flowers-related group drawing questions; Minneapolis schools seek to end contract with achievement gap group; OPEN LETTER REGARDING THE BREAKDOWN OF EDUCATION LEADERSHIP IN MINNEAPOLIS
By Radcliffe Norman – Political Analysis (at-large)
Minnesota's fifty-ninth state senate district is represented by Democratic Senator Bobby Joe Champion. Minnesota state senators represent an average of 79,163 residents. After the 2000 Census, each member represented 73,425 residents (BalllotPedia, 2016).
Today another contender has entered the race; meet Jennifer: corporate executive, business owner and today challenging the incumbent senator from north Minneapolis Bobby Joe Champion. Jennifer joins the ever popular social media, print and door knocking DFL candidate Patwin Lawrence who has broken records in the number of community following him on his campaign Facebook page.
|Jennifer and daughter. (photo: Campaign website)|
Jennifer Carnahan spent 15 years climbing the corporate ladder at some of the top Fortune 500 companies, including General Mills, McDonald’s and Ecolab. Despite her success, Carnahan said, she needed more style in her life. Last year, the business executive left the security of her office job to pursue a dream of opening a clothing boutique in northeast Minneapolis. Primrose Park debuted in October, and while Carnahan, 38, has achieved her long-held goal, it hasn’t been easy. On days when the cash register hardly opens, she is reminded of her personal motto, displayed on the walls of the cozy store: “Dream Big. Be Happy” (Blanchette, Star Tribune, 2015). (Read more about Jennifer here.)
Jennifer Carnahan, a Minnesota native, is a strong believer in the American Dream. Adopted from South Korea in 1977, Carnahan's parents - John and Cindra - taught her if she could dream it, she could live it. And since she was a young girl, Jennifer has been chasing her dreams.
Jennifer grew up in Maple Grove, graduated from Osseo Senior High School in 1995 and received her Bachelor of Science Degree from Syracuse University in 1999 - with a major in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Finance. She spent the first five-years of her career working for professional sports teams, including: the Florida Marlins, Minnesota Timberwolves and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. In October, 2005, Jennifer moved back to Minnesota and has owned a home in Downtown Minneapolis since that time. Upon her return to the Twin Cities Jennifer's career progressed with corporate leaders, including: McDonald's Corporation, General Mills and Ecolab. In 2013, Jennifer left the safety net of Corporate America to pursue her own personal American Dream. In 2014, Jennifer founded Primrose Park, a growing women's clothing and specialty retail store.
Residents in north Minneapolis now have a choice; deal with the obstruction of Sen. Champion, or let him return to private citizenry.