West St. Paul mayors throughout history

West St. Paul Mayors Throughout History

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Since 1889, 30 different people have served as mayor of West St. Paul. Here’s a rundown of all mayors over the years, including years elected and dates of their service.

Name
(birth-death)
PhotoTermElectedNotes
1Philip Crowley (1819-1902)Feb. 23 1889-Sept. 5, 1891elected by Council in 1889, 1891First mayor; Oldest mayor; Resigned
2James McGrath (1848-?)James McGrathOct. 3, 1891-May 1893Appointed to fill out Crowley’s term
3Hartwig Deppe (1835-1904)Hartwig DeppeJune 1893-May 18951893
4Joseph Hermann Sr. (?-?)(no photo)June 1895 to May 18971895
5James H. Berry (1856-1935)(no photo)June 1897-April 15, 19011897, 1899,Resigned
6John B. Sperl (1872-?)John B. SperlApril 15, 1901-May 1901Appointed to fill out Berry’s term
7James J. Galvin (1867-?)James J. GalvinJune 1901-May 19031901
8John B. Sperl (1872-?)John B. SperlJune 1903-May 19051903
9John Licha (1859-1947)John LichaJune 1905-May 19071905
10John F. Galvin (1866-1927)John F. GalvinJune 1907-Dec. 19101907, 1909
11Joseph Gibis (1866-1928)Joseph GibisJan. 1911-Dec. 19161910, 1912, 1914
12John B. Sperl (1872-?)John B. SperlJan. 1917-Dec. 19181916
13James A. Hurley (1881-1937)(no photo)Jan. 1919-Dec. 19201918
14William A. Stassen (1873-1962)William A. StassenJan. 1921-Dec.19221920
15Joseph Gibis (1866-1927)Joseph GibisJan. 1923-Dec. 19261922, 1924
16William A. Stassen (1873-1962)William A. StassenJan. 1927-Dec. 19301926, 1928
17Louis C. Gydesen (1896-1970)Louis C. GydesenJan. 1931-Dec. 19361930, 1932, 1934
18Rocco Verderosa (1901-1960)Rocco VenderosaJan. 1937-Dec. 19401936, 1938
19Edmond C. Meisinger Sr. (1900-1988)Edmond C. Meisinger Sr.Jan. 1941-Dec. 19421940
20Rocco Verderosa (1906-1960)Rocco VenderosaJan. 1943-Dec. 19461942, 1944
21John V. Sperl (1895-1970)Jan. 1947-Dec. 19561946, 1948, 1950, 1952, 1954
22Anthony Vitelli (1916-1997)Jan. 1957-Dec. 19581956
23Arnold E. Kempe (1927-)Arnold KempeJan. 1959-Jan. 24, 19631958, 1960, 1962Resigned
24Edwin J. Chapple (1904-1965)Jan. 1963-Dec. 1964Appointed to fill out Kempe’s term
25Robert J. Callahan (1927-?)Jan. 1965-Dec. 19661964
26Rollin H. Crawford (1940-)Rollin H. CrawfordJan. 1967-Dec. 19701966, 1968
27James R. Husman (1945-2017)Jan. 1971-Jan. 10, 19721970Youngest mayor; Resigned
28Robert J. Callahan (1927-?)Robert J. CallahanJan. 13, 1972-Dec. 1972Appointed to fill out Husman’s term
29Edmond C. Meisinger Jr. (1936-2020)Edmond C. Meisinger Jr.Jan. 1973-Dec. 19791972, 1975, 1977
30Kenneth H. Kube (1940-)Kenneth H. KubeJan. 1980-Dec. 19881979, 1981, 1983, 1986
31Michael P. Bisanz (1955-)Jan. 1989-Dec. 20001988, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998Longest serving mayor
32David Meisinger (1967-)Jan. 2001-Dec. 20022000
33Kevin J. Finnegan (1952-)Jan. 2003-Dec. 20042002
34John Zanmiller (1967-)Jan. 2005-Dec. 20142004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012
35David Meisinger (1967-)David MeisingerJan. 2015-Dec. 20162014
36Jenny Halverson (1976-)Jan. 2017-Dec. 20182016First female mayor
37David Napier (1959-)Dave NapierJan. 2019-present2018, 2020

West St. Paul Mayoral Factoids

Here are some quick factoids about West St. Paul mayors:

  • Number of people who have served as mayor: 30
  • First mayor: Philip Crowley (1889)
  • First female mayor: Jenny Halverson (2017)
  • Oldest mayor: Philip Crowley (1889)
  • Youngest mayor: James Husman (1971)
  • Longest-serving mayor: Michael Bisanz (six terms, 1989-2000)
  • Shortest-serving mayor: James Husman (one year, 1971-1972) (John B. Sperl served a shorter term of eight and a half months, but he went on to serve two more terms)
  • Resigned: Four mayors have resigned while in office—James Husman (1972), Arnold Kempe (1963), James Berry (1901), and Philip Crowley (1891).
  • Nonconsecutive terms: Six mayors have served nonconsecutive terms—David Meisinger (2001-2002 & 2015-2016), Robert Callahan (1965-1966 & 1972), Rocco Venderosa (1937-1940 & 1943-1946), William Stassen (1921-1922 & 1927-1930), Joseph Gibis (1911-1916 & 1923-1926), and John B. Sperl (1901, 1904-1905, & 1917-1918).
  • In the family: Several families have served as mayor, including the father-son combos of Edmund C. Meisinger Sr. and Edmund C. Meisinger Jr.; and John B. Sperl and John V. Sperl.
  • Appointed: Only two people have served as mayor without ever being elected mayor—James McGrath and Edwin Chapple. Robert Callahan and John B. Sperl were also appointed to mayor but they were either previously or later elected as mayor.
  • Higher office: Only two West St. Paul mayors went on to serve in higher office—Arnold Kempe served as a Minnesota state representative from 1975 to 1978 and John V. Sperl served as a Dakota County commissioner from 1957 to 1970. (James McGrath also served in the Minnesota state legislature, but that was before his time as mayor.)
  • Council first: Eight mayors served without being elected to council first—John Galvin, William Stassen, Edmund C. Meisinger Sr., Arnold Kempe, Robert J. Callahan, Rollin Crawford, Edmund C. Meisinger Jr., and Michale Bisanz.

We’re able to offer historical details like these thanks to the support of our members. Join through Patreon to support local news.

(Thanks to the City of West St. Paul and the Dakota County Historical Society for mayor photos. West St. Paul Reader is not endorsed, affiliated with, or sponsored by the City of West St. Paul. Note: Historical dates and info are confirmed to the best of our ability, though in many cases the historical record is nonexistent, spotty, or inconsistent. We always welcome additional info and research.)

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