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Hartog new president of MSA

WORTHINGTON -- After serving five years on the Minnesota Sheriffs' Association (MSA) Board of Directors, Kandiyohi County Sheriff Dan Hartog recently stepped into the position of president of MSA during a conference in Alexandria.

Born in Luverne, Hartog moved to Worthington at a young age. He graduated from Worthington High School in 1978 and went on to earn a law enforcement degree from Willmar Community College. He began his law enforcement career in Dodge Center in 1981, then became a deputy sheriff for Kandiyohi County a year later.

He worked as a dispatcher, patrol deputy and detective before being appointed chief deputy in 1997. Hartog ran for sheriff in 2002, was elected and took over in 2003.

Five years ago, other sheriffs in District 3 asked Hartog if he would represent them on the MSA Board of Directors. He started as fifth vice-president and worked his way up to president.

"I think it will be exciting to work with the other sheriffs and with the MSA director," Hartog said.

He's really looking forward to meeting his peers around the nation during two national conferences.

"It will be interesting to talk to them and find out how they handle things," he said.

Hartog will go to Washington, D.C., next month, then to Nashville, Tenn., this summer for national meetings. Other duties of the MSA president include overseeing board meetings and representing the MSA.

The MSA has two main goals -- to educate and legislate. According to Nobles County Sheriff Kent Wilkening, who will serve as president of the MSA next year, legislation at the capitol is monitored by the group.

"A lot of people ask our opinion in regard to public safety," Wilkening explained.

The education is also important.

"We provide training and education to sheriffs and other employees in an office, including corrections, dispatch, security and jail nurses," Hartog said. "We started a jail academy. We put correctional officers through a six-week course at Ripley. Different counties have staff that go up there and teach the classes. We'll supply some staff, as will other counties."

MSA also has someone on hand to keep it informed on changes and updates in civil process.

"It will be a busy year, with some different meetings and National Sheriffs' Association trips," Hartog stated. "But I'm excited about it."

Hartog's parents and sister still reside in Worthington. His wife, Shelly, who is also from Worthington, has two sisters who live in the area.

Dan and Shelly live on Diamond Lake in Kandiyohi County, where they enjoy fishing and boating. They also spend considerable time riding their motorcycle. The two recently celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary, and have two grown children.