Erwin won’t run again for Park Board president, Wielinski next?

John Erwin has announced he will not seek the Park Board presidency after four consecutive one-year terms, VP Wielinski rumored to be front-runner to replace him

At-large Park Board Commissioner John Erwin will not seek a fifth consecutive term as president, saying it’s time for new blood at the top.

“It’s a job that takes an awful lot of time and can be more stressful than what people appreciate. I think you have a lot of energy in the beginning, and each year that goes by you have a little less,” said Erwin, who had unanimous support for his presidency every year during the last election cycle.

Erwin refused to openly support a replacement, but he hinted that it could be Vice-President Wielinski (Dist. 1). 

“I think the best person to talk to is the vice-president. Talk to her and see what she has to say. I’m trying to stay out of it and let the board make the decision they want to make,” he said.

Wielinski confirmed she was running for president, but was fairly certain she would not be running unopposed. 

At-large Commissioner Annie Young, who was recently elected to her seventh consecutive term, said she had no interest in the presidency, calling it “a thankless, very busy job” in an email.

“I think we are working on Liz Wielinski being Prez,” wrote Young.

Wielinski was first elected to the Park Board in 2009 and ran unopposed this year to earn her second term. She represents District 1, which covers everything east of the Mississippi River.

Wielinski also serves on the Minneapolis Planning Commission, and prior to her Park Board candidacy she founded the blog Minneapolis Park Watch.