Before becoming president in 2009, Cerkvenik served as a member of the Council's board of directors from 1997 to 2003 and from 2006 to 2009. During his service on the board, he chaired the Public Policy Committee.
Previously, Cerkvenik was an attorney in private practice in Virginia, Minn. where he was a shareholder in the Trenti Law Firm. He was born and raised on the Iron Range and moved back there to practice law in 1996. Previously he worked as a law clerk at Faegre & Benson and with the Hon. Robert G. Renner on the Minnesota Federal District Court. Prior to earning his law degree he worked in politics, including as legislative director for the speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives and as a researcher for the Democratic Study Group in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Cerkvenik holds a B.S. degree from Saint John's University and a J.D. degree from the University of Minnesota. He has been an active volunteer and officer with the United Way of Northeastern Minnesota and a Little League coach. He also has served on the Ethics Committee of the Range Bar Association and the MPR Regional Advisory Council. A father of three children, he has been a member of the Virginia School Board.
Read the May 2010 Q&A with Paul.