I grew up in Worthington, MN. After graduating from high school in 1967, I followed in the footsteps of my father and of my older siblings by going to St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN. I graduated Phi Beta Kappa from St. Olaf in 1971 with departmental honors in Religion and Philosophy. I lived in France for the better part of the first year after college. I was next a graduate student in the Journalism School at the University of Minnesota for the better part of the second year after college. I then went to law school. I lived and practiced law in Winona, MN, from 1976 until 1993 when I moved to Perham. I've been in the Perham area ever since.
I have always thought it important to be a contributing member of my community. Since coming to Perham, I have been a member (and occasionally an officer) of the board of directors of the Otter Tail County United Way, the Perham Area Kinshhip, the Otter Tail County DFL, Natural Innovations (in Detroit Lakes), and my church. Additionally, I have a Kinship volunteer. (Among other things, I have been a "reading buddy" to various kindergarteners in the Perham grade school. I started a kayak-building project in 2016.) I have learned over the years that what I enjoy most about being a lawyer is the direct contact that it gives me with people and the opportunity that it gives me to be of service to others. I have an empathetic nature and appreciate those opportunities that I from time to time am given to provide personal support to individuals who are passing through a difficult time in their lives.
I have three children. They have all safely and successfully reached adulthood--each in his or her own way. Each of them has made me immensely proud. (When the day comes, I will be able to "pass the torch" with confidence.) Additionally, I have two granddaughters--a nine-year-old and a three-year-old--and a third grandchild on the way.
I have varied interests away from my work as a lawyer. I seem to thrive on discussion--with those who share this impulse and without the need to have others agree with me--about religious and political matters. My biggest more tangible interest is building things and woodworking. I've built boats, a barn (where I live), retaining walls, several cradles, rocking horses, Adirondack chairs, a sizable treefort 12 feet above the ground, and so on. This area of interest traces back to my early childhood and will probably see me through to the end.
My primary areas of practice over the past 20 years, or so, have been real estate, probate administration, estate planning, and providing "elder law" advice to many seniors who are concerned about the cost of nursing home care. In the past four or five years, because of the state of the economy, I have spent a significant amount of time helping people--many of whom were solidly middle class--with personal bankruptcies as they struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by what has become for them difficult financial situations. I know my professional limits and will not take on clients whose legal needs are beyond the scope of what I can competently do.
It would be an honor to have a chance to meet you, get to know you, and be of service to you. Give me a call or just drop in--Perham isn't so big that I can't be found!