“Jeff carries the torch for the common man.”
Former Minnehaha County Commissioner Bob Kolbe
Who is Jeff Barth?
The most experienced commission candidate on the ballot, with first-hand working knowledge of county systems and operations ...
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Why Jeff Barth?
Whether it is budgets, personnel, or policy, as a county commissioner, Jeff has experience making government work ...
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What has Jeff Done?
Fixing the court system, discouraging comission salary increases, to stopping the commission from meeting in private ...
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Who is Jeff Barth?
  • Jeffrey Edward Barth
  • Married (Sherrie)
  • Two daughters, both married, 6 grandchildren
  • Retired from Qwest (Northwestern Bell, US WEST, Qwest) after 31 years working both as a member of the union and a manager.
  • Currently a Minnehaha County commissioner.
  • Father was a diplomat. Grew up in Europe (Iceland, Germany and Belgium), Africa (The Republic of South Africa during Apartheid) and in the Washington DC area.
  • Served in the US Army Reserve 1976-1982
  • Attended 5 grade schools and 5 high schools and then went to Luther College in Decorah Iowa. Additional studies at Sioux Falls University, Augustana and Colorado Tech.
  • A Minnehaha County resident since 1984
Jeff is...

  • A retired telecommunications worker and manager
  • The most experienced commission candidate on the ballot, with first-hand working knowledge of county systems and operations, including representing the County Commission on behalf of many programs.
  • A strong, proven record of leadership with numerous non-profit organizations.
  • A veteran
  • A husband to Sherrie, and father of two grown daughters; grandfather to six grandchildren.
  • Accomplished at serving the voting public.
Why Jeff Barth?
Whether it is budgets, personnel, or policy, as a county commissioner, Jeff has experience making government work.

Jeff Barth is the most experienced commission candidate on the ballot, with first-hand working knowledge of county systems and operations, including representing the County Commission on behalf of many programs:
  • Siouxland Library Board
  • Multi-cultural Center Intergovernmental Board
  • Sioux Empire Fair Association Commission
  • Minnehaha County Economic Development Association
  • Southeast Council of Governments (SECOG)
  • Mental Illness Board
A strong, proven record of leadership with numerous non-profit organizations.
  • Siouxland Heritage Museum Board
  • Compass Center Board
  • Ex-officio Lifescape (Achieve) Board
  • East Dakota Water Development District
  • Interlakes Community Action Partnership
  • The Glory House
  • Dakotabilities
A strategic thinker, Jeff is past-president and a founding member of the Sioux Empire Chess Foundation.
What has Jeff Done?
Fixing the Court System
As a new Minnehaha County Commissioner in January of 2007, Jeff had already been a regular attendee of commission meetings and an observer of issues. He was already aware of the need to add more judges and more courtrooms to the Second Judicial District, which consists of Minnehaha and Lincoln Counties.

He encouraged a joint effort by all five commissioners that informed the public and secured help from architects and contractors to help solve it. An addition was constructed with zero public opposition, adding six new courtrooms to take care of the problem and provide for space for the burgeoning County population.

Minnehaha County now handles one third of all court proceedings in South Dakota with the fifteen judges that operate in the Minnehaha County Courthouse!

Discouraging Comission Salary Increases
When first elected to public office in 2006, Jeff was concerned about the salary increases his fellow Minnehaha County Commissioners had given themselves. Not because they don't work hard. His issue was that the amount is determined by the commission for the commission. Working at Qwest, Jeff had seen the abuse of that system by an errant CEO who wrote himself a fat paycheck. Aware of the low salaries many people in South Dakota make, as a commissioner, Jeff never voted to give the commission raises and donated increases exceeding his first 2006 salary to charity. Last year (2010) that amount was over $5,000.00.

Open Means Open
As a newly elected county commissioner, Jeff stopped the commission from meeting in private in violation of South Dakota's open meeting laws.