After serving nearly eight years on the Lower Minnesota River Watershed District (LMRWD) Board of Managers, Jesse Hartmann retired in December. Scott County’s representative served as board president from 2018 to 2023.
“All of my life I’ve been on this river … It’s been a great opportunity,” Hartmann recalls. “The people we work with are great people, and it’s a lot of fun.”
Hartman fishes, hunts, canoes, and rides mountain bike trails in the LMRWD, much of which is within the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge. The nation’s largest urban refuge is a critical migratory bird flyway bordered by fast-growing suburban residential, industrial, business, and shipping areas. But, writes district spokesperson Suzi Linberg, “Hartmann understood the call to balance modern development with a respect for the natural environment.”
The Lower Minnesota Watershed District protects, improves and maintains ground and surface water along the river from the City of Carver to Eden Prairie, Burnsville, Bloomington, and Mendota Heights. The district collaborates with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Army Corps of Engineers, businesses, local governments, and other watershed districts to prevent erosion, flooding and contamination.
Within its area are bluff lands, floodplains, marshes, lakes, trout streams, rare calcareous fens, recreational boating, fishing, and hunting areas, as well as a nine-foot deep river navigation channel from the Mississippi to barge ports in Savage.
During his last LMRWD board meeting, according to a press release, Hartmann was praised for his work with watershed staff in developing strategic district plans, budgeting, and providing informed guidance on large-scale capital improvement projects, including bluff stabilization in Eden Prairie.
Hartmann was LMRWD board chair when it also approved $150,000 for a joint project with the Riley Purgatory Bluff Creek Watershed District to help restore impaired Riley Creek. The project was completed during the spring of 2020.
“His dedication demonstrates the lasting impact that private citizens can make on their local community,” said Lindberg.
Editor’s note: Writer Jeff Strate is a founding board member of Een Prairie Local News.
• Scott County appointed Nathan Dull as its new representative on the LMRWD Board of Managers. Hennepin County is represented by Laura Amundsen and Joseph Bariszonzi.
• Eden Prairie residents can apply for a place on the district’s Citizens Advisory Committee. For more information, visit the Lower Minnesota River Watershed District website.
• Read EPLN’s feature story about LMRWD District during its Diamond Anniversary in 2021.
We offer several ways for our readers to provide feedback. Your comments are welcome on our social media posts (Facebook, X, Instagram, Threads, and LinkedIn). We also encourage Letters to the Editor; submission guidelines can be found on our Contact Us page. If you believe this story has an error or you would like to get in touch with the author, please connect with us.