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By Caroline Downs
November 6th is designated as the official election day, but with absentee and vote-by-mail ballots already circulating among voters, the race is on to determine who will represent citizens of District 4 at the next state legislative assembly.
The District 4 race has attracted attention and new candidates after the district boundaries were redrawn following legislative action last November. All three District 4 positions for the state legislature will be elected this year, with four incumbents competing to hold their seats and one newcomer declaring his intent to serve.
District 4 Senate race
Incumbent John Warner of the Democratic-NPL party wants to continue his work as the District 4 state senator, but Republican Daryl Lies has thrown down a challenge for the seat.
John Warner, a farmer from Ryder, was first elected to the legislature in 1997, where he served until 2003. He returned to government service in 2005 when he was elected to the state senate. He earned bachelor’s degrees at North Dakota State University and Minot State University, and is a member of Farmers Union and St. John’s Lutheran Church. He and his wife Janice have four children.
Warner serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee. Between legislative sessions, he has been a member of the Budget Section, Energy Development and Transmission, Health Services, and Legislative Redistricting interim committees.
Daryl Lies was born and raised on the family farm near Douglas, where he continues to work in the livestock business. He has been a licensed auctioneer since attending the World Wide College of Auctioneering in 1991, and he has operated his own business, Daryl’s Racing Pigs, since launching that enterprise as an FFA member at Garrison High School 25 years ago.
Lies and his wife Kim have two daughters. He is a 4-H leader and member of the FFA Alumni who is interested in increasing opportunities for youth and looking out for the economic and development interests of small communities in the state. As a candidate for state senator, he has also prioritized infrastructure needs and energy development, tax reform and relief for the state’s citizens, property rights, and a higher level of accountability in state government.
District 4 House of
The new boundaries established by the legislature for District 4 incorporated a portion of the former District 6, including townships in the Gooseneck of Ward County and the city of Kenmare, home of District 6 Republican representative Glen Froseth.
As a newcomer to the district but an experienced state legislator, incumbent Froseth has challenged the two Democratic-NPL incumbents from District 4, Tom Conklin and Kenton Onstad.
Tom Conklin is a rancher from Douglas who was elected to the state house in 2009. He attended Minot State University-Bottineau, NDSU and MSU, and has three children with his wife Diane.
During his four years as a representative, he has been a member of the House Agriculture, Constitutional Revision and Human Services committees. Between sessions, he has sat on the Agriculture and Human Services interim committees.
Kenton Onstad lives in Parshall, where he works in business development for the Mountrail-Williams Electric Cooperative. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Dickinson State University and has served his neighbors as a township supervisor, president of Parshall 2000, Inc., and director of the Mountrail County Job Development Authority. He and his wife Kathy have three children.
Onstad began his tenure in the North Dakota House of Representatives in 2001, where he is a member of the Judiciary and Transportation committees. His interim work has included participation on the Legislative Management, Tribal and State Relations, and Water-Related Topics Overview committees.
Glen Froseth, of Kenmare, is a graduate of Landa High School and the State School of Science at Wahpeton who developed a career in newspaper publishing. He is a past-president of the North Dakota Newspaper Association and a member of the Kenmare Lions as well as Nazareth Lutheran Church. He also serves on the board of directors for the Kenmare Community Development Corporation. He and his wife Donna have four children and 12 grandchildren.
Froseth was elected to the state House of Representatives in 1993, where he currently works on the Finance and Taxation Committee along with the Government and Veterans Affairs Committee. His most recent interim work has been with the Government Services, Property Tax Measure Review, and Taxation committees.