Jeff Patience to fill Alexandria School Board vacancy, special election to be held in November

Jeff Patience was appointed to replace Bob Cunniff on the Alexandria School Board on Wednesday, Apr. 14.

Jeff Patience

The Alexandria School Board unanimously appointed Jeff Patience to fill the vacancy left by board clerk Bob Cunniff on Wednesday morning.

Patience is expected to be officially sworn in during the board meeting on Monday, May 17. A 30-day waiting period was imposed after Cunniff resigned because he is moving out of the area. During the May meeting, the board will reassign committee appointments Cunniff previously held.

Patience is the senior vice president at Bell Bank in Alexandria. He has a daughter, Elise, who is a junior at Alexandria Area High School. His son, Ethan, graduated from AAHS in 2020 and currently attends the University of Oregon.

Patience served on the Budget Advisory Finance Council, Academies of Alexandria Freshman Advisory Committee, DECA volunteering and partnered on a summer externship program for one of the school’s business teachers. Patience serves on the Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission Board of Directors, the AAEDC executive board, Alexandria Dollars for Scholars and Sertoma. He also coached youth hockey in Alexandria and is a former member of the Jaycees and Jingle Bells Foundation.

Minnesota requires any school board vacancy to be filled until a special election is held in the current year. The special election will take place Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021 with the electee serving until January 2023. The period for filing affidavits of candidates for the special election is Tuesday, May 18 through Tuesday, June 1. For more information about the special election, contact Maggie Timm at 320-762-2141 ext. 4213 or

Jared Rubado is the sports editor for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and the Perham Focus. He moved to the area in September of 2021 after covering sports for the Alexandria Echo Press for nearly three years. Jared graduated from the University of Augustana in 2018 with degrees in journalism and sports managment.
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