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Von Ruden, Huber, Thompson win school board

A seasoned veteran and two newcomers will join the Perham-Dent School Board in 2009.

Nine-year incumbent Arnie Thompson was re-elected to his seat.

Sue Von Ruden and Cyndy Huber, both running for their first time, also won seats on the board.

Von Ruden, the top vote-getter with 2,782, is community relations director at Perham Memorial Hospital and Home.

Huber is controller and human resources director at United Community Bank, with extensive background in accounting and finance--which will come in real handy as the school board and administration wrestles with the budget. She netted 2,648 votes.

The three will face stiff challenges in the coming years. With the failure of the levy referendum, which would have brought as much as $950,000 annually in new operating revenue, the school board is likely to face $500,000 in additional budget cuts by this spring.

"We're going to have to get back out there and go for another levy referendum," said Thompson, who totalled 2,111 votes.

Meanwhile, Thompson said the board will have to look at "anything and everything" to trim the budget.

Incumbent Dan Nodsle failed in his bid for re-election. He received 1,391 votes.

John Minge won 1,558 votes; Jane Aschnewitz, 1592; Todd Nygaard, 1,191; and Dale Salberg, 800.