The school board of School District 197 has seven members who are elected at large to four-year terms. Elections for school board members are held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November in odd-numbered years. 

The terms of three school board members (John Chandler, Marcus Hill, Maureen Ramirez) will expire at the end of December 2021.

What is on the ballot?

General Election/School Board Seats: Voters will select up to three individuals to fill three open seats on the School District 197 School Board.  The following candidates have filed to be on the ballot (listed in alphabetical order):

  • Timothy J. Aune (Mendota Heights)
  • Stephanie Auran (West St. Paul)
  • John Chandler (Mendota Heights)
  • Mark Grondahl (Mendota Heights)
  • Marcus Hill (West St. Paul)
  • Sarah Larsen (Mendota Heights)
  • Robert Reese (Sunfish Lake)
  • Morgan Steele (West St. Paul)
  • Jon Vaupel (Mendota Heights)
  • Elena Villarreal (West St. Paul)

Special Election/Referendum Renewal: Voters will vote yes or no on the renewal of the expiring referendum revenue authorization of the school district.

Where do I vote on Election Day?

Combined Polling Locations for the School District:

School District Precinct

Combined Precinct

Polling Place Location

Combined Precinct 1

West St. Paul: W-1 P-1; W-2 P-1; W-3 P-1

Heritage E-STEM Magnet School
121 W. Butler Ave.
West St. Paul, MN 55118

Combined Precinct 

Inver Grove Heights – Precincts 1 & 10; Sunfish Lake; West St. Paul: W-1 P-2; W-2 P-2; W-3 P-2

St. Stephen’s Lutheran Church
1575 Charlton St.
West St. Paul, MN 55118

Combined Precinct 3

Lilydale; Mendota Heights – Precincts 1, 2 &3

Two Rivers High School
(formerly Henry Sibley High School)
1897 Delaware Ave.
Mendota Heights, MN 55118

Combined Precinct 4

Mendota City; Mendota Heights – Precincts 4 & 5

Friendly Hills Middle School
701 Mendota Heights Rd.
Mendota Heights, MN 55120

Combined Precinct 5

Eagan – Precincts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5A & 6A

Pilot Knob STEM Magnet School
1436 Lone Oak Rd.
Eagan, MN 55122


You can also use the Polling Place Finder on the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website at www.mnvotes.org to find your specific voting location.

Register to Vote

Voters must be registered with their current name and current address.  Voters who have moved or changed their name since the last election must re-register.  Voters are encouraged to pre-register so your name will appear on the voter registration list of voters at the polls.  This will save you time at the polling location.  Register at least 20 days before the election for your name to appear on the voting roster.

CLICK HERE to register or update your registration.

Or you may fill out a paper Voter’s Registration Application and mail it back.  To register, a person must be:

  • A U.S. citizen
  • At least 18 years old on Election Day
  • A resident of Minnesota for 20 days prior to the election
  • Finished with all parts of any felony sentence
  • Not under court-ordered guardianship where a court has revoked your voting rights
  • Have not been ruled legally incompetent by a court of law

Voters can also register at their polling location on Election Day if they miss the pre-registration date. CLICK HERE for the identification required.

Absentee Voting

You can vote by casting an absentee ballot prior to Election Day. Absentee voting means voting by mail or in-person before Election Day, instead of at the polling location. Absentee voting begins on Friday, September 17, 2021 and runs through 5:00 p.m. on Monday, November 1, 2021. Any voter may vote absentee-you do not need a reason. You do not need to be registered to vote to apply for an absentee ballot.  If you are not registered to vote, you will receive a “Voter Registration Application” with your absentee ballot.

To absentee vote in person, you may go to any of the following locations: 

School District 197 District Office
1897 Delaware Avenue, Mendota Heights, MN 55118 (entrance is through the high school parking lot, back by the tennis courts) Masks are required to absentee vote in person at the School District 197 District Office.

  • Monday through Friday / September 17 to October 29 / 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • The following Thursdays will be open 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. (September 30; October 14; October 29)
  • Monday, November 1 / 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Dakota County Northern Service Center
1 Mendota Road West, West St. Paul, MN 55118

  • Monday through Friday / September 17 to October 29 / 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Monday, November 1 / 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Dakota County Administration Center
1590 Highway 55, Hastings, MN 55033

  • Monday through Friday / September 17 to October 29 / 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 30 / 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • Monday, November 1 / 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

To absentee vote via the mail, complete the Absentee Ballot Application and scan/email it to mary.amidon@isd197.org OR mail it to Mary Amidon, School District 197, 1897 Delaware Avenue, Mendota Heights, MN 55118. Once your application is processed, your ballot will be mailed to you along with a postage-paid return envelope.

Once a voter receives their ballot in the mail, they should follow the instructions carefully.  Voters need to have a Notary OR a registered Minnesota voter sign their envelope as a witness. To return an absentee ballot, a voter can:

  • Mail it in the prepaid envelope that came with the ballot.  The ballot must arrive back on or before Election Day. (Postmark dates do not matter-only the date the ballot arrives.)
  • Drop it off in person to the school district office before Election Day or by 3:00 p.m. on Election Day. Do not return your absentee ballot to your polling location.
First page of the PDF file: 2020-2021SchoolBoardBookletFINAL

MSBA "Running for School Board" Webinar

The Minnesota School Boards Association is providing a webinar that covers basics such as how to file for the board, reasons to serve on the board — and reasons not to serve on the board, job duties of school boards, and how boards function as a team. CLICK HERE to watch the webinar via YouTube.

Absentee Ballot Application

First page of the PDF file: 2021ABApplication