I grew up in South Minneapolis, just a few miles from George Floyd Square, and I’m proud to call Hennepin County my home. I’m Jai Hanson, and I’m an independent running to be your next Hennepin County sheriff.
I was born in India and adopted and brought to Minneapolis when I was just two years old. My parents instilled in me the value of public service: my dad as a judge on the Minnesota Supreme Court, my mom working as a state employee and educator and a dedicated non-profit community advocate.
I went to college in Chicago, where I saw firsthand how crime can destroy a community. I wanted to be part of the solution and was motivated to help, so I changed my major to prepare for a career in public safety and I graduated early to accept the challenge of serving as a police officer.
For the last 14 years, I’ve served with two of our finest metro police departments. I’ve also earned a master’s degree in public safety, so I know how law enforcement should act with respect and dignity when responding to calls for help.
We in law enforcement took an oath to serve our communities – the communities we also are proud to call our homes, where we grew up, where we raise our families, and where our neighbors are our friends. In return, the men and women who put on a law enforcement badge every day and night deserve to be supported by our elected officials.
As a police officer and a man of color, I’ve seen firsthand how far we have to go when it comes to repairing relationships with our communities – especially our minority communities. To me, this is not about moving on or turning the page, instead this is about acknowledging, learning and healing from what’s happened in order for all of us to become safe.
If you feel like it’s time for a new direction in law enforcement, please join me in helping to make our county safe. I’m not seeking an endorsement from any political party so I can be your true independent sheriff. Because after all, law enforcement is about people – not politics.