Serving District 5 of Hennepin County

As the District 5 Commissioner, Debbie represents Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Richfield and a part of SW Minneapolis on the Hennepin County Board. She lives in Richfield, where she was first elected Mayor in 2006, and re-elected twice more in 2010 and 2014. A methodical thinker, Debbie enjoyed a successful career as an engineer in environmental and sustainability fields. She earned her engineering degree from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities and completed additional graduate studies for environmental sustainability at the University of Minnesota and Harvard. In the private sector, Debbie worked for a number of companies such as Medtronic, Montgomery Watson, and Weyerhauser.

Debbie was elected to her first term as a Hennepin County Commissioner in November 2016 and she won a second term in 2020; she is currently in the fourth and final year of that term.

Her colleagues describe her as a problem solver and a regional thinker with big vision. She is tough and decisive, but also caring and collaborative. She listens to all sides of issues, understands complexity and is willing to look for common ground and ways to move challenging issues forward.

Debbie is no stranger to adversity. She was widowed when her son was very young, and she worked hard to raise him as a single parent in Richfield. She credits terrific schools and a wonderful community in which to raise a family. After marrying her husband Tor just a few years ago, she is now the proud mother to two sons and a daughter. She is a grandmother of four.

A message from Commissioner Goettel

It doesn’t matter if you’re from Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Richfield, or SW Minneapolis (the communities of the Fifth District): you have a friend and an advocate on the Hennepin County Board. I’m always looking for new and innovative ways to elevate your ideas, advocacy, and concerns in our collaborative work to lift up the diverse communities who call the South Metro home.

I’m honored to be the one you have placed such trust in as we solve complex issues at Hennepin regarding affordable housing, livable and safe communities, climate change, opportunity gaps for our BIPOC communities, seniors, and people with disabilities, and infrastructure and transit investments. Let’s keep moving forward, and I hope to count on your support as we walk this road—together.

In partnership,
Commissioner Debbie Goettel

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