Micheal “Gunner” Gunstanson will be a candidate for Lakewood City Council Ward 5 in November.
Gunstanson is running against Karen Harrison for the term-limited seat held by Diana Wilson.
“I’ve always been interested in politics, it was always something that was in the back of my mind,” Gunstanson said. “When I heard that Diana’s seat was going to be open, I was encouraged by my neighbors to make a run.”
Gunstanson said he is a journalist by trade, having worked at CNN, the LA Times, Rocky Mountain News, Dallas Morning News and the Houston Chronicle, as well as at several TV stations. He currently works at Xanterra Parks & Resorts as the director of digital marketing.
Born in Texas, Gunstanson has lived in Lakewood with his wife, Drucella, since 2005.
While working for newspapers in Texas, Gunstanson said he learned about city procedures and had his first taste of how politics work, and will take the lessons he’s learned to council, if elected.
“I’ve been talking to people in my neighborhood and ward to get a sense of what issues are important to them” he said.
One of the most important to the people Gunstanson has spoken with — and for himself — is the protection of open space in Ward 5 and the city.
“People around here love open space, and they want the city to help them protect it,” he said. “That includes keeping an eye on developments, and how they could be managed with open space in mind.”
The Green Gables development is another issue that Gunstanson said Ward 5 residents are extremely cognizant of, as well as crime rates increasing in the area.
The implementation of Amendment 64 is also an issue that will be tackled by council, and Gunstanson said that since Coloradoans voted for it, and the Federal government just announced they will be backing off enforcing federal laws, that it’s something council should look closely at.
“We need to listen to what citizens say, and answer questions about regulation to the benefit of the city.”
Gunstanson is a proud boy scout, and said that the values the organization instilled in him make him a great candidate.
“The things I learned in that group — trust, loyalty, honesty and being prepared — are extremely important,” he said. “People will find that I’m a stand-up guy who is extremely accessible.”
For more information, visit www.gunstanson4lakewood.com.