Luke Nash is running for reelection to a second term as the mayor of Mantorville.
He was on the City Council for nine years before becoming the mayor.
"It's been mostly fun, although here are a lot of challenges and decisions - some with a lot of pressure along the way," he said. "People who run for city offices generally have an item of importance in mind that they want to accomplish. Then they discover that there is more to it than they might have guessed."
Nash was one of a group who started the park board and one of those who wrote a grant for playground equipment.
"We installed it ourselves," he said.
He grew up in Red Wing and graduated from Red Wing High School. He was in the Army from 1983 to 1985, serving in the Panama and Guatemalan Wars.
"I worked at the White House when Reagan was President, which was an interesting experience," he said. "I met six presidents at some time."
He He went to Inver Grove Community College, graduating with a degree in Law Enforcement. He started work in the Goodhue jail and worked in several cities in Dodge and Goodhue counties and as a patrol officer. He retired from law enforcement from Dodge County, thanks to arthritis.
He and his wife Lynette have lived n Mantorville for 19 years. They are the parents of Alexa, who is 16, and Luke, who is 13. Both attend Kasson-Mantorville Schools.
Nash served on the Economic Development Authority for a number of years and on the Joint Powers Board, as well as many boards and committees.
He and Tim Tjosaas, the mayor of Kasson, are on the Southeastern Minnesota League of Municipalities, with Tjosaas as president and Nash as vice-president.
"We represent a lot of people," he said. "We advocate for the cities of southeastern Minnesota. The people in St. Paul have begun to take us more seriously."
He is the head deacon at the First Congregational Church in Dodge Center and delivers Meals on Wheels.
"My life is public service - in the military, as a cop, in church, in elected rolls and in law enforcement," he said. "I've always been in public service, mostly public safety. I hope that is a good example for my kids. There are a lot of ways you can help others. It's a win - win situation, working with other people cooperatively."
He said that he likes the position of mayor, and guiding the city council through difficult situations. He added that he has tried hard to have development that's going well and to do a lot of internal work within Mantorville, which he sees as essentially a residential community.
"It's a nice, peaceful, safe community," he said. "It's a low key city. I think people think of Mantorville as a good place, with its parks, the Hubbell House and homes - relaxing, overall good things."
He said he has found the position of mayor to be challenging and looks for things to improve on.
"It can be ugly if you don't look ahead," he said. "I look at needs versus wants. The needs have pretty much been addressed. Now we can look at upgrading, rather than catching up."
He said that the council has been good.
"Cami Reber, the clerk/treasurer, does an outstanding job on the day to day business," he said. "Adam Hovden is the public works man and Dave Leth does sewer and water. The staff and council work together well. The cooperation is amazing."
He said he hopes to have some more time in this office.
"I'm not ready to be done," he said. "I have to see the sewer system improvement through. I started a plan and I would like to get a few more things wrapped up. I try to help others the best I can."