City Council

The Watertown City Council is comprised of one elected member from each City Ward.  The meetings are led by the mayor or, if the mayor is not present, the Deputy Mayor.

The City Council meetings take place on the first and third Monday of each month, starting at 5:30PM.  If there is a holiday on the Monday in which the council is to meet, the council will meet on the following Tuesday.

Vision, Mission & Values

The Watertown City Council is a part-time legislative body responsible for the legislative function of the city:  reviewing and adopting policies responsive to the community.


The City of Watertown is focused on opportunities and responsible growth.


We will provide excellent services and opportunities for everyone to be safe, happy, and successful.


We will lead with:  Honesty, Transparency, Integrity, Excellence, Service, and Grace.

Mayor Ried Holien

Message from Mayor Holien

Greetings, and welcome to the Watertown, South Dakota, city website! While I don’t know if you are a Watertown resident or someone from out of town, I’m confident you will find what you need here. After looking around our website, please know you are just one click away from contacting any of our city staff or elected officials. Everyone here is ready and wanting to help.

You will find that this friendly attitude permeates our entire community. We are a vibrant, growing city with a thriving economy based upon hundreds of local businesses and the fact that we are the hub for all of northeast South Dakota. We offer a variety of shopping options, from locally-owned stores to large chains. We have tantalizing culinary options with award-winning restaurants recognized at worldwide competitions as among the best in the nation. Watertown is also known as a live music mecca with concerts every week in the summer at our showcase downtown park. The music continues year-round at one of our many private and public options, including inside the historic century-old beauty of the Goss Opera House. From classical to rock, from local bands to top-40 legends, Watertown offers something for everyone.

The quality of life in Watertown is fantastic. Our city government invests heavily into public improvements, including the aforementioned downtown park and Goss opera house, a wellness center, a multi-sheet ice arena, and a state-of-the-art airport connecting Watertown to the world.

The City of Watertown employs hundreds of wonderful people tasked to dozens of departments all working together to assure the community is run well and efficiently. You’ll get all your licensing and permitting needs taken care of at City Hall. If you’re looking for fun, our Parks & Recreation department maintains myriad quality-of-life amenities including nearly a 100 miles of trails, youth and adult sports, tennis and pickleball courts, along with camping, activities and beaches at the two lakes within city limits. It’s worth noting as well that wherever you go, you’ll get there on some of the best roads in the entire Midwest. Sure, we face challenges from the weather, but we’re certain you’ll feel the incredible commitment we’ve made into our roads both financially and through the manpower at our Street Department.

Of course, the most important quality-of-life aspect in any community is public safety. In Watertown, we boast of two stellar organizations: the Watertown Police Department and Watertown Fire & Rescue Department. Both are nationally recognized for their excellence.

So, whatever you are looking for at our city website, we hope you find our virtual presence as helpful and hospitable as we all are when you meet us face-to-face. We really are proud of our community, and we are looking forward to helping you become more a part of it. 

Watertown City Council

Click on council member photo to contact

Ward A-Michael Danforth

Michael Danforth - Ward A

Ward D-Bruce Buhler

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Ward B-Kyle Peters

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Ward E-Lynn Jurrens

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Ward C-Dan Schutte

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At Large-Randy Tupper

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City Council with City Manager

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