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For Immediate Release
May 14, 2018

 

John Gunyou Announces Re-election Campaign for Three Rivers Park District Commissioner

Campaign will emphasize his widely respected leadership, proven collaborative results and fiscal responsibility

 

MINNETONKA, MN — The current Three Rivers Board Chair, John Gunyou, announced his re-election campaign today for the Three Rivers Park District Board of Commissioners. He is running for re-election to District 4, which represents the communities of Minnetonka, Edina, Hopkins, Richfield, Excelsior, Shorewood, Deephaven, Greenwood, Tonka Bay and Woodland.

“I’m proud of all we have accomplished, and look forward to continuing our important work,” Gunyou stated. “I am especially grateful for the opportunity to live my values every day.”

Under his leadership as Board Chair for the past six years, Gunyou has overseen some of the largest projects in Three Rivers history, insuring their successful completion both on time and on budget:

  • Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail, which connects Edina, Richfield, Hopkins, Minnetonka and Bloomington, and links with many other regional trails.
  • Replacement of the Hyland Hills Ski Chalet that hosts 160,000 visitors every year, including 40,000 lessons and many local alpine ski teams.
  • Nationally recognized 5K cross country ski facility, which provides lighted trails and dependable snow for thousands of Nordic skiers and teams.

“I am especially proud of our initiatives that now bring more of Three Rivers’ exceptional recreation and environmental education programs into first tier communities,” said Gunyou. “This is very important for children and seniors in communities like Richfield, Hopkins, Robbinsdale and Brooklyn Center, who have traditionally had less access to our great facilities and services.”

As Board Chair, Gunyou has championed creative local partnerships to significantly improve access to parks, trails and programs. As examples:

  • Explorer Camps now bring Three Rivers recreation and environmental programs into partner city parks and senior centers.
  • Parks on the Go delivers outdoor recreation and education activities to over 200 community festivals, school events and health fairs every year.
  • "On-Ramp" trail connections link local trails to the regional trail network. 
  • Three Rivers Nature Centers partner with schools, libraries and nonprofits to offer outdoor experiences for participants in their own communities.
  • Park Partnerships have jointly developed nature trails, fitness courses and other facilities in Richfield, Robbinsdale, Crystal and Brooklyn Center parks.

With his extensive financial management background, Gunyou has introduced long-term planning procedures to stabilize agency debt and insure the future capacity to provide highly valued services well into the future at a reasonable cost. As a result, Three Rivers has a AAA bond rating, and despite double digit visitor growth, has held property taxes flat for the last four years in a row.

As Board Chair, Gunyou also implanted new procedures to improve transparency and responsiveness at Three Rivers. He explained, “As a public official, I believe in regularly communicating with and being readily accessible to those who elected me to serve.” Gunyou encourages his constituents to check out his website www.johngunyou.com and join the thousand people who receive his blog newsletter and follow his Facebook page and Twitter account.

Upon announcing his re-election campaign, Gunyou is being endorsed by numerous local, state and national leaders. As a few examples of District 4 local officials who are already supporting his campaign:

  • Hennepin County Board Chair Jan Callison
  • Edina Mayor Jim Hovland
  • Minnetonka Mayor Brad Wiersum
  • Hopkins Mayor Molly Cummings

His campaign website www.johngunyou.com regularly updates the complete listing of his many supporters. Gunyou’s extensive background and detailed positions on issues are also available on the website.

Gunyou lives in Minnetonka, on Three Rivers’ Lake Minnetonka Regional Trail. His wife Kim, their five adult children and 2.8 grandchildren are long-time users of the region’s extensive park, trail and recreation resources.

Election day is Tuesday, November 6, 2018. If more than two candidates are running, a primary will be held Tuesday, August 14, 2018.

For more information, please contact John Gunyou at john@johngunyou.com or 952-237-7499.

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For Immediate Release
June 28, 2012

 

John Gunyou Receives League of Minnesota Cities’ Highest Honor

Former city manager recognized for decades of outstanding public service

MINNETONKA, MN — Former Minnetonka city manager John Gunyou has received the League of Minnesota Cities’ highest honor for appointed city officials. Gunyou, who served as city manager for 12 years, was chosen as this year’s sole recipient of the 2012 Leadership Award. The award is presented annually in celebration of individuals who have demonstrated outstanding and exemplary public service.

“Since announcing my retirement this spring, I have been overwhelmed by the support, recognition, and friendship of so many colleagues, friends, and neighbors,” said Gunyou. “Being recognized by such a respected organization is humbling; I am honored to accept this award.”

“Through all my years in public service, there has not been a challenge I have faced that couldn’t be resolved by working together, having the courage to think differently, and having the persistence to see a job through to the end,” Gunyou said. “I hope to bring that same cooperative approach to the challenges and opportunities facing the parks and trails that make our communities great.”

The Leadership Award was presented to Gunyou at the League of Minnesota Cities’ Annual conference in Duluth on June 21. LMC officials cited Gunyou for being an “…outspoken advocate for innovative thinking in the public sector, from public-private partnerships to cooperative agreements between cities.”

Among Gunyou’s many accomplishments cited by the League over his 30-year career in public service was working with the City of Minnetonka’s senior leadership team to implement a significant restructuring of city departments to streamline service and reduce costs. It is that innovative approach to smart, responsible governance that Gunyou hopes to bring as a Three Rivers Park Commissioner.

Prior to serving as Minnetonka city manager, Gunyou served as Minnesota’s Finance Commissioner, was the first finance director for the City of Minneapolis, ran Minnesota’s original and largest Internet company, and was an executive with Minnesota Public Radio. Gunyou was also a partner with the largest economic consulting firm in the Rocky Mountains, has taught at several universities, and has degrees in finance and economics from the U.S. Air Force Academy, UCLA and University of Colorado. 

Gunyou has served on numerous state and national boards, including the DNR Parks and Trails Legacy Funding Work Group, Minnehaha Creek Corridor Coordinating Committee, US EPA Financial Advisory Board, MPCA Citizens Board, and Minnesota State Arts Board. He has received many honors, ranging from Best City Finance Officer in the Nation, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Allies Award and WCCO Good Neighbor Award.

Gunyou lives in Minnetonka, on Three Rivers’ Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail. His wife Kim and their five adult children have been long-time users of the district’s extensive park, trail, recreation and natural resources.

For more information, please contact John Gunyou at (952) 237-7499 or john@johngunyou.com. Gunyou's campaign website can be found at: www.johngunyou.com.

 

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For Immediate Release
April 24, 2012
 

John Gunyou Announces Candidacy for Three Rivers Park Commissioner

Trusted, respected public leader would devote lifelong passion for the outdoors to West Metro-area parks


MINNETONKA, MN — Long-time Minnetonka resident John Gunyou announced his candidacy today for the Three Rivers Park District Board of Commissioners. Gunyou, who is widely regarded as one of Minnesota’s foremost public administrators and a leading expert on fiscal policy, said the privilege of serving on the Board offers a unique opportunity to continue to improve the quality of life in our communities and leave a positive, lasting legacy for future generations.  

“My father once told me that we don’t plant trees for ourselves, we plant them for our grandchildren,” Gunyou said. “I take those words to heart, and have tried my best to live by them throughout my 40 year career.”

“Great parks for today and tomorrow,” he said. “If elected to serve on the Three Rivers Board, that is my pledge to our communities, our children, and our grandchildren. Through careful stewardship, strong leadership, and a steadfast commitment to responsible decision-making, we can and must guarantee the health of our cherished parks for decades to come.”

Parks and natural areas have always been important in Gunyou’s life. Gunyou noted that he and his wife Kim were even married in a park, as was their oldest daughter.

“Growing up, my family always went camping and boating; and I will never forget my first Boundary Waters experience as an Eagle Scout,” Gunyou said. “From a young age, I have always had great respect for our natural resources. Having the opportunity to continue to protect and preserve our local creeks, rivers, forests, and recreation areas would be a great honor.”

Gunyou emphasized his career has always been dedicated to responsible stewardship and long-term vision. “The natural environment we enjoy today is the legacy our forefathers and foremothers left for us,” he said. “We honor their foresight by sustaining those investments in our quality of life.”

Retiring soon as Minnetonka’s city manger, Gunyou is proud of his leadership over the years that has permanently preserved acres of open space, forests, lakes and wetlands, and provided the parks, trails and natural areas that make our communities special.

Long known for his responsible financial leadership, Gunyou stressed the benefit of cooperative partnerships and community outreach to get things done in today’s challenging economy, and to provide good service value for every taxpayer dollar. “Long ago, I learned how to play well with others,” Gunyou said, “We do things best when we do them together.”

Gunyou is running for the District 4 seat currently held by Dale Woodbeck, who recently announced he will not be seeking reelection. Woodbeck is supporting Gunyou’s candidacy, as is Three Rivers Parks Chairman Larry Blackstad. District 4 includes the communities of Minnetonka, Edina, Hopkins, Richfield, Shorewood, Excelsior, Deephaven, Greenwood, Tonka Bay, and Woodland.

Gunyou’s Campaign Steering Committee for the nonpartisan election includes Minnetonka Mayor Terry Schneider, Edina Mayor Jim Hovland, Hopkins Mayor Gene Maxwell, Richfield Mayor Debbie Goettel, Shorewood Mayor Chris Lizee and Hennepin County Commissioner Jan Callison. Equally significantly, Gunyou has already received numerous endorsements from such respected leaders and former officials as Congressman Jim Ramstad, Governor Arne Carlson and House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher.

Prior to serving as Minnetonka’s city manager for the past dozen years, Gunyou served as Minnesota’s Finance Commissioner, was the first finance director for the City of Minneapolis, ran Minnesota’s original and largest Internet company, and was an executive with Minnesota Public Radio. Gunyou was also a partner with the largest economic consulting firm in the Rocky Mountains, has taught at several universities, and has degrees in finance and economics from the U.S. Air Force Academy, UCLA and University of Colorado. 

Gunyou has served on numerous state and national boards, including the DNR Parks and Trails Legacy Funding Work Group, Minnehaha Creek Corridor Coordinating Committee, US EPA Financial Advisory Board, MN PCA Citizens Board, and MN State Arts Board. He has received many honors, ranging from Best City Finance Officer in the Nation, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Allies Award and WCCO Good Neighbor Award.

Gunyou lives in Minnetonka, on Three Rivers’ Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail. His wife Kim and their five adult children have been long-time users of the district’s extensive park, trail, recreation and natural resources.

Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012. If more than two candidates are running, a primary will be held Tuesday, August 14, 2012. 

For more information, please contact John Gunyou at (952) 237-7499 or john@johngunyou.com. Gunyou's campaign website can be found at: www.johngunyou.com.

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John Gunyou
Three Rivers Parks Board Chair