Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk officially announced plans to run for re-election Monday, saying she will attempt to win a third term in the April election.

The progressive said she continues to enjoy the challenge of serving the county, calling the support she has received from constituents “humbling and inspiring.”

“We’ve accomplished much. We are building on that foundation and we have so much yet to do,” Falk said in announcing her decision to run. “It’s the challenge and the opportunity that makes this such a great job and motivates me every day.”

Campaign manager Melissa Mulliken said Falk “remains energized and enthusiastic” to be the top executive in county government.

In announcing her decision to run again, Falk outlined her major plans for a third term. A long-time environmental activist, Falk said steps need to be taken to prevent sprawl and preserve the lakes and streams throughout Dane County. One of her major initiatives in office has been the Conservation Fund, a $30 million measure buying land parcels throughout the county.

Falk also highlighted efforts to make the way the county does business more efficient. With a population of 438,000, Dane County is the second largest in Wisconsin, and growth has been brisk in recent years.

Still, Falk recently approved the county board’s budget with no vetoes.

“We will continue to run a tight fiscal ship while delivering the high-quality public services citizens deserve and expect,” Falk said.

First elected in 1997, Falk has served two terms as Dane County Executive. She won re-election in 2001 by a wide margin over Dane County Sup. David Wiganowsky, District 21.

In 2002, she ran for governor, losing in the Democratic primary to current Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and current Gov. Jim Doyle.

No opponent has announced plans to challenge Falk as of yet. Potential candidates can start circulating nomination papers Dec. 1.

Falk currently has $160,000 in campaign funds, most of which comes from fundraising efforts in the last year, Mulliken said.

The general election for the county executive position is April 5, 2005.