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I confess that I commit more than my share of the seven deadly sins on a daily, if not hourly, basis. Tuesday morning, topping the list was No. 4, Envy (definition: jealousy; wanting to have what someone has) after reading the story about the State Board of Higher Education voting to remove Chancellor Hamid Shirvani and buying him out of his three-year contract. On Monday, the board took up a proposal Shirvani submitted more than a week earlier to either allow him to continue his three-year contract with "complete autonomy and full support of the board" or buy out his contract.
You don't have to look very far to notice how rapidly our area is growing. Seemingly everywhere you look a new building or business is going up. Still many local and potential businesses are flying in the dark when it comes to what goods and services are needed in our ever changing community. There are as many rumors about potential business as there are businesses that folks want to open in Dickinson.
I didn't serve in our military, though my father spent 24 years in the Army and Air Force. Like most people I have known who served in combat, my father seldom talked about it and I rarely asked. Once, when we were studying about World War II and the Normandy Invasion in school, I asked if he been there. He told me that the only reason I existed, was because he was in the second invasion of Normandy. Almost everyone in the first invasion was killed, and the fact that I was alive depended on his luck of being chosen for the second day.
Iron workers set the signed beam Wednesday morning during the signing of the Steel Ceremony at the new Sanford Health Dickinson Clinic.
I'm not a native North Dakotan so perhaps it is why I admire the state so much. People in North Dakotas are consistent, hardy, hardworking, creative, honest and so much more in making the state such a great place to live. I always thought the quality of North Dakota schools played a huge part in their citizenship.
During what seems like a lifetime ago -- because it was -- I worked as a laborer at a copper refinery in Sahuarita, Ariz. Laborer is Latin for one who does what nobody else will do on the cheap and, most days, I found myself on the wrong end of a shovel for eight-plus hours. One day my supervisor told me the bin under the scrubber was plugged and I needed to climb inside and use a steel pipe to unplug it. The material, normally very hot, had been allowed to cool so I could climb in without burning up. Once inside, I realized that part of allowing it to cool was greatly overstated.
I've spent a lot of my adult life in states that bordered Canada. When I was publisher in Havre, Mont., only 40 miles south of the border, we took a few trips to the Alberta cities of Medicine Hat and Calgary. Crossing the border was simpler then. After 9/11 it required a passport. Not being a world traveler, I just never got around to acquiring one until moving to Dickinson. As a result, I hadn't visited Canada for more than 10 years. On Tuesday, I crossed the border north of Crosby on my way to Regina, Saskatchewan, to attend the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference.
My focus since the day I was hired as publisher of The Dickinson Press was to ensure that the opinion page was the medium for discussion in our communities. Arriving in the fall of 2007, I heard from some in the community that the newspaper had not always been receptive to letters to the editor or op-ed pieces. Knowing that the true measure of a newspaper is how engaged readers are, we made every effort possible to ensure you had every opportunity to voice your opinion. Due to space considerations, we do have a one letter to the editor limit per person per 30-day period and 400-word limit.
Most worthwhile wisdom I have acquired was outside of any classroom or textbook. I also know, for a fact, I never learned anything while talking. One of the best places I've received valuable information is while sitting in a barber's chair. Barbershops, I have learned, are a great source for good and bad information -- not only from the barber but customers as well.
There is a lot going on in North Dakota's oil country and, depending who you talk to, more good than bad. The oil boom has resulted in a population increase unlike anywhere in the country. Most of the people moving here for work are hard-working folks who are just trying to make a living. You have to admire their pioneer spirit to leave their homes and in a lot of cases families to work in North Dakota. Working in the oil industry can be dangerous and requires highly skilled employees with a keen eye on safety for themselves and their co-workers.