Two begin sheriff bids

Becoming sheriff a ‘lifelong goal’ for Wallen

Eric Wallen

By Per Peterson

Lyon County Sgt. Eric Wallen figured when the time came for him to run for Lyon County sheriff, he would be ready. That time has come.

Walling last week announced he will campaign this year to replace long-time sheriff Mark Mather.

“This is something I’ve been working toward for several years,” said Walling, who grew up on a farm outside of Minneota. “It’s kind of been a lifelong goal for me. I think I’ve got the experience, being here for 20 years, and the education with a couple of management degrees from SMSU. Plus, I have the training that comes with being on the job.”

Wallen holds a bachelors degree in Law Enforcement Administration and a Masters degree in business administration. As a 20-year veteran with the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office, Wallen has experience with various aspects of county law enforcement, including working as a correctional officer in the jail, patrolling, investigations, and managing the county 911 dispatch center, according to a news release last week. For the last 10 years Wallen has held the position of sergeant and supervises the day-to-day operations of the office.


Tony Rolling

Tracy grad ready to take next step in his career

By Per Peterson

Tony Rolling’s decision to campaign to become the next sheriff of Lyon County didn’t come easily and it certainly wasn’t a knee-jerk decision.

“We had a family meeting and laid it all out,” Rolling said Tuesday. “As a family, are we prepared to do this? We all agreed we were. It was a family decision. When you’ve been married for 22 years, you’re not the only one it affects.”

Rolling is a 1990 graduate of Tracy Area High School. It wasn’t until he spent two years at Southwest Minnesota State University that he decided he wanted to pursue law enforcement for a career, and that led him to Alexandria Tech, where he would earn his law enforcement degree.

He started his professional career in Balaton in 1997 and then came to Tracy full-time, where he spent six years with the police department. He joined the sheriff’s office in 2003 and has been an investigator for 10 years. Now, he’s gearing up to run a campaign.

“It’s going to be interesting,” he said. “For me, I’m not one to ask for things, ask for help, but I’m going to have to swallow the pride on this — I’m asking for votes and for people to help me help them.”

For more on these articles, see this week’s Headlight-Herald.