Between his early morning Agriculture Committee meeting and the daily briefing with the Republican Caucus, Bob Glanzer found a few minutes to talk with the Christian Leader about his new role in the South Dakota legislature. Glanzer is a member and active leader at Bethesda MB Church in Huron. A retired banker, his 2016 campaign to represent Beadle and Kingsbury counties was Glanzer’s first foray into public office.
What prompted you to run for office?
The summary of my life is a huge involvement in my local community. When I retired five years ago, it wasn’t in my long-term plan, but it was a natural jump, and I had a lot of great support.
You’ve identified drug abuse as a costly issue your state needs to address.
Meth is seemingly the drug of choice, and it’s almost impossible for addicts to be rehabbed out of it. As the saying goes, I’d rather put a fence at the top of the cliff than an ambulance at the bottom. We need education, but the main issue is a heart problem, and you can’t legislate that away.
What experience do you bring to this issue?
My wife, Penny, and I have been doing a Bible study in a drug and alcohol rehab program for 13 years. So many of the kids have the same story—no dad in the home, mother with several relationships. Parents don’t have the skills to raise their children. We have a big job to restore our culture back to solid families.
Where do you go for help in making decisions about issues?
The convictions I came here with were not decided five minutes ago. They’re the result of a lifetime of Bible study and contemplation. People are looking for that kind of substance. My roots in faith and family are fundamental to making decisions in today’s confusing environment.
What do you want to accomplish as a legislator?
I didn’t come in with an agenda. I feel like Paul in I Corinthians 16:9 who saw a “wide door of opportunity,” but also adversaries. There are many who are not thinking along the same lines as I am. I want to be a strong conservative voice and a light in this part of the world.
Interview by Kathy Heinrichs Wiest