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Cekalla earns DFL endorsement for Senate District 10

Growing up on a family farm with six brothers and one sister, Cekalla learned early to work hard, put her faith in God and take care of her community, she said.

Suzanne Cekalla headshot
Suzanna Cekalla.
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RICE — Ordained minister and small business owner Suzanne Cekalla of Rice became the endorsed DFL candidate for the State Senate District 10 on Saturday, June 18.

“I am a firm believer in rural Minnesota,” she told the gathered supporters, according to a news release. “We have so many great things to offer! I’ve always lived here, and those of us that live here know what it means in our hearts. It’s a fabulous place to be.”

Growing up on a family farm with six brothers and one sister, Cekalla learned early to work hard, put her faith in God and take care of her community, she said. After attending a one-room school in North Prairie and graduating from Royalton High School, she said she put her faith into action: first becoming a nurse and then leading a regional Community Action Program initiative aimed at protecting children and young adults in central Minnesota.

Cekalla then opened a small business, became a founding member of the Rice Chamber of Commerce, and got her Master of Divinity degree — winning the Horace Bushnell Award for Christian education along the way — while raising three children.

Her faith brought her back to healing, she said, first as a pastor, then hospital chaplain in St. Cloud, and finally calling on her faith to help those in great need as a private grief and loss coach.

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Now the grandmother of five has chosen to postpone retirement a bit longer and is running her first campaign.

“I have something I want to say,” she stated. “I’m frustrated. The partisanship is ridiculous. And we in rural Minnesota are the ones who suffer. We get left behind. There are great programs that help people in the metro, great social services that bring communities together. People in rural Minnesota don’t have those same opportunities. I don’t think that’s fair, and I’m determined to change that.”

District 10 includes most of Morrison, Mille Lacs and Benton counties, along with portions of Crow Wing, Aitkin, Kanabec and Isanti counties.

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