Meet the Candidates for Beltrami County District 4

Two are in the running for the District 4 race for a special two-year term this election.

Joseph Neft, from Northome, is challenging longtime incumbent Tim Sumner from Red Lake.

Redistricting earlier this year changed District 4; it now includes the cities of Funkley and Kelliher and the following townships: Alaska, Battle, Benville, Cormant, Durand, Hamre, Hornet, Kelliher, Langor, Lee, Little Rock, Maple Ridge, Minnie, Nebis, Northern Beltrami Unorganized #1, O’Brien, Ponemah, Quiring, Red Lake, Redby, Roosevelt, Shooks, Shotley, Spruce Grove, Steenerson, Upper Red Lake Unorganized #2, Waskish, and Woodrow.

The candidates are listed in the order they were interviewed.


Tim Sumner has represented District 4 since winning his first election in 2012, winning again in 2016 and 2020.

Sumner is proud of the strides made in the county’s health and human services and in improving roads.

Sumner believes his experience on the board and the relationships and trust he’s built over his nearly ten years of service is an asset going into the midterm elections this year.



Joseph Neft is new to the local political realm but believes divine intervention played a hand in his decision to run for office.

A lifelong Beltrami resident and farmer, Neft is also a truck driver with a large family.

Neft strongly believes in leaving things better than he found them, and is concerned about rising property valuations and taxes.

Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!

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