Carla Nelson

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Carla Nelson
Carla Nelson.jpg
Minnesota State Senate District 26
In office
2011 - present
Term ends
January 3, 2017
Years in position 3
Base salary$31,140.90/year
Per diem$96/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 2, 2010
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Minnesota House of Representatives
2003 - 2005
Bachelor'sDrake University
Master'sUniversity of Minnesota
BirthdayMay 22, 1957
ProfessionTeacher/Owner Insurance and Investment Firm
Office website
Campaign website
Carla Nelson (b. May 22, 1957) is a Republican member of the Minnesota State Senate, representing District 26 since 2013. She previously represented District 30 from 2011 to 2013. Prior to her time in the Senate, Nelson served in the Minnesota House of Representatives from 2003 to 2005.

Nelson is an educator and small business owner. Since leaving the Minnesota House, Carla has owned and operated an insurance and investment firm. She also is certified as a reading specialist, receiving her certification from the University of Minnesota.

Nelson received a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Drake University with an emphasis in Special Education. Carla earned her Master of Education in Teacher Leadership from the University of Minnesota.


Campaign themes

Nelson's website highlights the following campaign themes:[1]

Jobs and the Economy

  • Excerpt:"As a small business owner, Carla knows we must improve Minnesota’s private sector job climate through lower taxation and smarter regulation. Minnesota is one of the least job friendly states in the nation. We must change this to keep and expand Minnesota jobs!"


  • Excerpt:"Carla will solve the massive looming budget deficit using a balanced approach. Increase revenues through increased economic activity. Hold a lid on and reduce job-killing tax burdens in an already highly taxed state. Reduce the size of government focus on priorities and increase results."


  • Excerpt:"Lawmakers must correct our school funding formulas to remove large funding disparities between school districts. Student achievement must be the focus of education reform and funding."

Health Care

  • Excerpt:"Carla is an advocate for patient-centered health care. She will fight to preserve patient choice and will work to reform the payment system to reward outcomes. Carla authored legislation that formed the cutting edge Minnesota Partnership between Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota."

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Nelson served on the following committees:

Minnesota Committee Assignments, 2013
Capital Investment
Health, Human Services and Housing
Jobs, Agriculture and Rural Development


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Nelson served on these committees:



See also: Minnesota State Senate elections, 2012

Nelson won election in District 26 in 2012 due to redistricting. She was unopposed in the August 14 Republican primary and defeated Kenneth Moen (D) in the general election on November 6, 2012.[2][3]

Minnesota State Senate, District 26, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngCarla Nelson Incumbent 55.7% 22,263
     Democratic Kenneth Moen 44.3% 17,692
Total Votes 39,955


See also: Minnesota State Senate elections, 2010

Nelson won election to the District 30 Seat in 2010. She had no primary opposition. She defeated incumbent Ann Lynch (DFL) in the general election on November 2, 2010.[4]

Minnesota State Senate, District 30 (2010)
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Carla Nelson (R) 16,757 54.30%
Ann Lynch (DFL) 14,056 45.55%
Write-In 47 0.15%

Campaign donors


Campaign donor information is not yet available for this year.


In 2010, Nelson raised $70,504 in contributions. [5]

Her four largest contributors were:

Donor Amount
Nelson Carla Jean House Dist 30A Cmte $14,014
Public Fund $11,567
1st Congressional District RPM $2,700
Nelson, Carla J $1,143

Recent news

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Nelson and her husband Terry have three children.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Mike Parry (R)
Minnesota State Senate District 26
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Ann Lynch (DFL)
Minnesota State Senate District 30
Succeeded by
Mary Kiffmeyer (R)