Two candidates - Diann Quastad Minion, Republican, and Phyllis Martens, Democrat - are running for the office of Emmet County Recorder in the June 4 special election. The position is to fill the remaining year and a half of a vacancy.
Diann Quastad Minion
Question: Please give a brief biographical description of yourself, including your relationship to Emmet County, family, activities, professional experience or other items you would like included.
Answer: I was born to Lois and Omer Quastad in rural Emmet County, later graduating from Lincoln Central, Gruver. A resident of Estherville, I am the proud mother of one daughter, Ciara, an active participant of Estherville Lincoln Central High School. I was raised in a large family of nine kids, and learned to work hard early in life. My siblings include, Boyd, Colleen, Jeff, Kevin, Greg, Brad, Dennis and Joel, all residents of Emmet County.
I have been in business management my whole life. For 20 years, I have been responsible for all aspects of the business, both operational, and financial. Most importantly the high standards of customer service, with that, we have done an excellent job at growing our sales. Also keeping records to forecast and budget to bring the most to the bottom line, along with ledgers, employee files, reporting them to the state, just to name a very few. In the past I programmed the point of sale system, and have used numerous software programs.
I was also the business manager for eight years, at an auto dealership, where I was the finance and insurance manager. I was in charge of all of the documentation for the purchase of a new or used vehicle. I would verify your identity, arrange vehicle financing, sell the proper insurance, compile and enter data and process necessary contracts. Process EFT's, or collect payment of large amounts of money, figure tax, title and license fees, properly note liens and report the sale to the manufacturer to ensure we would receive payments for all of the proper programs.
When not busy at work, I am usually heading to a ball game of some sort. In the fall, I enjoy helping in the field operating the tractor and grain cart whenever possible. We also enjoy spending time with family and friends, being on the lake in the summer time.
Q: What do you see as the responsibilities of Emmet County Recorder and why do you believe you are qualified for the position?
A: As the recorder, I will be in charge of all your vital records including, birth, marriage, death and military records. I will also be selling marriage, fishing and hunting licenses to you and taking your pictures for your passport. I have had to verify identities in the past which will be a requirement, necessary for these job duties also collecting the fees due.
Registrations and or titles of ATV's, ORV's, snowmobiles and boats is another duty of the recorder. Coming from the dealership, I figured license fees, taxes, noted liens and filled in the titles and title application,and collected the proper amount due.
Real estate deeds are another important part of the recorder's job as the proper documentation of your number-one asset in life is your home, or your land. So I would record liens and releases for your mortgages, back tax liens for federal or state, just to name a few. As the finance manager I was responsible for your number-two asset in life normally, your vehicle. It was my responsibility to ensure all liens were noted properly, to secure the lender, and to also verify the trade and to ensure that vehicles had a clear title. The proper documentations ensure property is not being sold without satisfying the debt, protecting you the buyer, and the lender.
I would also be responsible for forwarding the month-end and year-end information to the state. I look forward to putting my skills to work in the recorder's office, and learning all aspects of the job.
I think with my knowledge, hard work ethics, customer service skills and personality, I will be a perfect fit for the recorder's office. I have always gone over and above what is expected of me, and my positive end results are evidence of it. I didn't just become a manager. I worked hard and climbed the ladder rapidly, earning every rung one at a time!
Q: Describe your philosophy of customer service and how you would practice it in the Recorder's office.
A: I think you should always treat the customer how you would wish to be treated and then go one step over what their expectations would be. It's like the cherry on top of the hot fudge sundae. After all, you are paying my wages, as customers have my whole life. I will always greet you with eye contact and a smile, in which is just part of my personality. Knowing that not always does everything go as it should. As my customer, you may forget some of the needed documents, for example, register your snowmobile. Showing you empathy, with an apology, and educating you the customer, so in the future things will go smoother, will help me earn your respect. As my customer, I will give you a please, as you are paying my wages, and a thank you, after you have paid them! Having great customer service will ensure the customer leaves the office, hopefully having a better day then when they arrived. I hope you come in as my customer, and leave as my friend!