From rural Iowa to run for governor |

From rural Iowa to run for governor

Kim Marquis

In Summit County, Gary Lindstrom is considered a “Nice Guy.”

Even his campaign last November against Eagle County Republican Heather Lemon for the state House of Representatives was run with more compliments than mudslinging.

He teaches sociology and political science at Colorado Mountain College but continues to be a student himself. He spent four weeks in Mexico this summer learning Spanish in a language immersion program.

He writes a weekly column for the Summit Daily News that in the past included poetry. He spent several years writing a poem a day, and even built up a fan club across the country.

He frequently rides his Harley-Davidson to meetings, with a red-white-and-blue bandana tied around his head.

With a master’s degree in human communication from the University of Northern Colorado, he is a professional facilitator and a former school administrator.

He has been married for 30 years to Lynne, 56, who was diagnosed

with multiple sclerosis in 1982. She lives at the Mesa Vista Care Facility in Boulder, and Lindstrom visits her every Sunday. They have two children, and Lindstrom has three children and six grandchildren from his first marriage.

Over the years as he gained more confidence and made countless

decisions as a politician, Lindstrom said, he’s become more vocal and outwardly liberal. He now dubs himself a “liberal” Democrat at the same time he says he hates the term.

As a Republican commissioner in the 1990s, Lindstrom wore long

hair. His colleagues frequently joked that as his politics grew more liberal, his hair got shorter. He now wears a brush cut.

He grew up in rural Iowa, served in the U.S Air Force during the

Vietnam War and worked as a cop for more than 20 years. As a young police officer, he worked the streets of New York City, then moved to Colorado in 1970.

In Summit County during the 1980s and early ’90s, he served as undersheriff for 10 years and coroner for eight. And now, he’s got his eyes on the governor’s office.

Vail, Colorado

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