The Foreign Service Journal - March 2014 - page 55

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
|
MARCH 2014
55
AFSA NEWS
After serving for five years as
a Foreign Service officer with
the Department of State in
Nigeria, Mexico and Wash-
ington D.C., Jon Tollefson
returned home to his family
and community in Min-
netonka, Minn. 
He landed a job at
the Minnesota High Tech
Association, where he came
in contact with engaging
policy leaders at the state
and national level. The
association’s goal is to make
Minnesota one of the top
five technology states in
the country. The more he
became aware of the science
and technology issues we
face as a nation, the more he
became involved.
Tollefson soon realized
that the best way to have an
impact in this arena—and
possibly help Minnesota
succeed—would be to run for
state representative.
In the meantime, he
immersed himself in the
fight to defeat a proposed
marriage amendment before
A Desire to Serve
ACT I VE AFTER ACT I VE DUTY
the citizens of Minnesota,
one that defined marriage as
between a man and a woman.
If the amendment should
pass, Tollefson and others felt
it would, “enshrine discrimi-
nation in our constitution.”
For more than two years,
he and his family, friends and
the LGBT community worked
to defeat the amendment. In
the end, with the support of
their fellow Minnesotans, the
amendment was defeated.
In December, former FSO
Jon Tollefson announced his
candidacy for the Minnesota
State House of Representa-
tives from his hometown of
Minnetonka. Citing his good
fortune at having received a
world-class public education
and the opportunities he has
been given in life, he hopes
that by running, “Perhaps I
can help to make sure oth-
ers enjoy some of the same
benefits I have had.”
For more information,
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