Burgum presents Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award to retired Secret Service agent and author Clint Hill
Gov. Doug Burgum on Monday presented retired U.S. Secret Service agent and author Clint Hill with the North Dakota Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award during a ceremony attended by more than 200 friends, family and other well-wishers at the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center in Hill’s hometown of Washburn.
Hill is the 44th person to receive the Rough Rider Award, the state’s highest commendation for its citizens. He served in the U.S. Secret Service from 1958 to 1975, protecting the presidency through five administrations: President Dwight D. Eisenhower, President John F. Kennedy, President Lyndon B. Johnson, President Richard M. Nixon and President Gerald R. Ford.
With a long and distinguished career, Hill will forever be remembered for his courageous actions on Nov. 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, when in the midst of the Kennedy assassination, he leapt onto the back of the presidential limousine to shield the President and First Lady with his own body. His swift and selfless action is credited with saving the life of First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.
“Clint Hill exemplifies the spirit of service, determination and work ethic associated with the Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award,” Burgum said. “From his humble North Dakota roots, he rose to the highest ranks of the U.S. Secret Service, continually risking his life to protect our nation and its commander in chief, and he has since inspired millions by sharing the stories of his experience. Agent Hill has traveled the world representing the United States and at every opportunity has stood proudly for our great state. His exceptional record of honorable service has earned him our everlasting respect and gratitude as fellow North Dakotans.”
Secretary of State Al Jaeger and State Historical Society Director Claudia Berg, who both concurred with Burgum’s selection of Hill for the Rough Rider Award, helped unveil the official portrait of Hill during the ceremony. The portrait, painted by Minot-based artist Vern Skaug, incorporates images of the White House, Hill’s military service, his three books about his experiences in the Secret Service, and the iconic image of him leaping onto the back of the presidential limousine to protect the president and first lady on that fateful day in Dallas. The portrait now hangs in the Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Hall of Fame on the ground floor of the state Capitol in Bismarck.
Burgum talks turkey, highlights charitable organizations and poultry industry
As part of an annual Thanksgiving tradition, Gov. Burgum pardoned two turkeys at the Capitol on Monday with Deputy Commissioner Tom Bodine from the North Dakota Department of Agriculture.
The turkeys, Teddy and Mittie, hailed from Wyndmere and were named after former President Theodore Roosevelt and his mother.
As part of the poultry pardon, the North Dakota Turkey Federation donated 12 turkeys each to the Ruth Meiers Hospitality House and the Abused Adult Resource Center in support of the important work the organizations do in our community.
North Dakota has nine farms raising turkeys, with combined production of more than 1 million turkeys per year.
NDIC approves funding for two lignite R&D proposals
The North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC) on Tuesday approved funding totaling over $15 million for two lignite research projects.
The larger of the two is a request for $15 million to help fund a Front-End Engineering and Design (FEED) study for Project Tundra, a commercial-sized carbon dioxide (CO2) capture system retrofitted on an existing lignite-based power plant. Modeled after the successful Petra Nova initiative in Texas, the vision for Project Tundra is to retrofit Unit 2 at the Milton R. Young Station with technology that could capture up to 95 percent of its CO2 emissions. The CO2 captured at the Young Station would be pipelined to western North Dakota for use in enhanced oil recovery projects. The project would cost $31 million and the proposal is asking for $15 million from the Lignite Research Fund.
In a joint statement, the NDIC members said, “The energy industry in our state provides thousands of good paying jobs and millions in tax revenue every year to local and state governments. The fact that this project benefits both the coal and oil industries and the environment makes it a high priority for the citizens of North Dakota as we work to grow our economy for the future.”
The NDIC is a partner with the regional lignite industry in the Lignite Research Program. State dollars are leveraged with industry investments for research and demonstration projects. Since 1987 when the partnership began, the state has invested more than $60 million in lignite research funds. Total investment in more than 190-plus projects is in excess of $700 million. Besides state dollars, R&D funding also comes from industry sources such as mines and utilities, research entities, such as the EERC, and the Department of Energy.
Sanford imparts career advice at middle school
Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford paid a visit to Mandan Middle School on Wednesday to speak with eighth-graders during AVID Career Week. Sanford spoke about his role as lieutenant governor and also about his time in the private sector as a small business owner and CPA.
AVID is a program designed to get students ready for college and careers. It was expanded to Mandan Middle School in 2015. The course provides extra support to students, empowering them to succeed in their career after high school or college through hard work and encouragement.