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District 13 race: Republicans choose candidates

Two incumbents and one newcomer won their Republican party’s nomination for election as District 13 representatives.

Incumbents Sen. Judy Lee and Kim Koppelman along with West Fargo native Chris Olson were nominated for election at the legislative endorsing convention for the Fargo area Republican districts at Carl Ben Eielson School in Fargo on March 4.

District 13 covers a large portion of West Fargo and remains the only legislative district completely contained within the city.

Olson, an Army veteran, is CEO of Treasure Island Coins, Inc., a coin and precious metal dealer. He also owns Dakota Depository LLC, a secure precious metals storage facility.

Olson hopes to fill the seat vacated by Republican Rep. Alon Weiland who served in the Legislature for 12 years.

Olson was endorsed by the Liberty ND PAC. This is its first 2014 electoral win, according to press release from the group.

Koppelman and Lee were first elected in 1994 to represent the legislative district, which then included all of the city of West Fargo and some surrounding rural areas.

Lee is a retired real estate with the Park Company. She chairs the Senate Human Services Committee and also serves on the Senate Political Subdivisions Committee. She previously also served on the Government and Veterans Affairs Committee and is a former Senate president pro tempore.

Koppelman is president/CEO of Koppelman and Associates, a marketing­public relations, communications and advertising firm and former newspaper editor. is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and also serves on the House Political Subdivisions Committee. He previously chaired the Constitutional Revision and Administrative Rules Committees and served on the Appropriations Committee. He is the past national chairman of the Council of State Government.