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From 1992-2006. Sheila Kiscaden represented Senate District 30, Rochester in the Minnesota State Senate. During her years in the Senate, Sheila became known as one of Minnesota's political leaders on health policy and social welfare issues and became Chair of the State Government Finance Committee.  Her public policy expertise in the Senate was built on more that 20 years of experience in Olmsted County as a planner, program manager, and organizational development consultant, and she was recognized by many organizations for her legislative leadership.

Sheila has another distinction as a legislator. She is the only legislator to serve as a member of three different parties.  She was elected as a Republican in 1992, 1996 and 2000.  In 2002 she was re-elected as a member of the Independence Party, the only one to serve in the Legislature from that party but in 2004 she joined the Democratic Caucus and in 2006 became the running mate of a Democratic candidate for Governor. When he withdrew his candidacy, Sheila left elected office.

Sheila continues to be very active, however, in organizing civic engagement and citizen participation efforts in her community. She returned to the consulting practice she established in 1987 and has a busy career as an organizational development consultant with a specialization in the issues of non-profit and government human service organizations. Sheila current serves on the Board of the Citizens League, the Center for Victims of Torture, GRAUC (Greater Rochester Advocates for Universities and Colleges) and on several advisory committees.  In 2013, Kiscaden was elected to the Olmsted County Board of Commissioners for the 6th District.

Sheila holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Southern California, and a Master’s in Participation, Development and Social Change from the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex. 

Contact Sheila Kiscaden


MAPL 5311 - Advocacy in the Public Sector: Service in the Elected Branch