We can’t cut our way to prosperity.
Donate to the campaign fund of Charles Dolson
Rarely does a politician come along principled in actions, tough in representing people and with a plan to help Northern Minnesota. But with your help; Charles Dolson can change that. Please give today!
Meet Charles Dolson
Charles is a 42-year-old Bemidji resident. He is an enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians, born and raised on the reservation.
Charles describes himself as a problem solver and knows that long term economic prosperity is gained through investing in education and infrastructure. Charles defines infrastructure as more than just roads and bridges. “It's housing, health care, child care, public transportation, emergency services among others.” Charles wants to take the people of Senate District 5’s message to St. Paul. “I feel that we can bring more to our Senate district by me listening to our residents here and not only repeating what they tell me but holding true to that. I know that by taking that approach our senate district will see long term economic prosperity.”
Charles is married and has three daughters, two who still live in the home. Together they reside in the Nymore area of Bemidji with two rambunctious dogs that keep their lives exciting.
Charles approached the DFL endorsement methodically. He first checked with party leaders and others who are more experienced and also may be interested. He got their approval and assurances they were not running before announcing his campaign. He mentions this because he wants to keep the party unified and together as “we end this idea of cutting our way to prosperity” -Charles Dolson
Marine, Law Enforcement Officer, & Lawyer
Charles joined the Marines after high school. According to Charles, by the time he met with the Marine recruiter; he had a pretty good idea the Marine Corps was where he belonged. He walked into the recruiter’s office and asked: “where do I sign?” The recruiter, rose to his feet looked Charles in the eyes and asked: “Son, what makes you think you got what it takes to serve in my beloved Corps?” It was at that precise moment Charles knew he belonged in the Marines.
Charles was stationed at what is commonly called Marine One—the presidential helicopter squadron. Before Charles was 19, he had a Top-Secret, Yankee White Security Clearance and carried a loaded firearm within arm's reach of the President. Before Charles was twenty years old he was in charge of security teams guarding assets deemed vital to national security.
Charles learned a lot about servent leadership in the Marines. One of Charles’ unit’s most visible parts of their job was doing the ceremonial salute to the President when he got on and off the helicopter. Charles recalls that when he was a junior Marine, he’d do the ceremonial salute to the support staff helicopter, rather than on Marine One. That didn’t sit well with Charles, and when Charles was a more senior Marine, he always let his junior Marines do a ceremonial salute for Marine One.
Charles came home from the Marines because his mother struggled with depression after witnessing Charles’ father’s murder. Charles' mother died of cancer not long after his return from the Marine Corps.
Charles became a law enforcement officer at this time, working for the Leech Lake Police Department and a police dog. Charles also met his wife, Jennifer around this time. Charles went on to work for Cass County Sheriff’s Department and was assigned to the drug task force before his last law enforcement job in the City of Bemidji.
Charles left law enforcement when he realized he’d stayed too long. Charles had promised his mother, on the day she died, that he’d go to school and get an education. While Charles was on the task force, during a meeting with federal prosecutors, Charles' comments were completely ignored. It was then that Charles decided it was time to leave law enforcement. “I felt I needed a louder voice,” is the way Charles often explains that moment in his life.
While in school, Charles was a peer tutor, a Teachers Aid, he worked for a Juvenile Treatment Facility and was a bartender. In law school, Charles worked the maximum amount of hours allowed by law school rules (20) at the juvenile treatment center. On weekends Charles would travel back home from the metro area to work and spend time with his family.
After law school, Charles went to work for the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians as the Executive Director of the Band. Charles and the team in Red Lake enjoyed many successes. Charles and his team stopped the youth suicide epidemic in Red Lake for 18 months by changing the way treatment was handled. Charles and the team also brought down the opioid overdose rate from 8 per week down to 0 for a while before averaging out at 1 per week.
Why I’m Running:
Unity & Opportunity
“I’m running because its time to invest in our community. In business, they say it takes money to make money, and the same is true in government, we can’t cut our way to prosperity. I want to see our schools doing better, I want to see us train and retain the talent that we have in our district. I want to see us all doing better. ”