Helmut Schmidt was born in Germany, but grew up in the Twin Cities area, graduating from Park High School of Cottage Grove. After serving a tour in the U.S. Army, he attended the University of St. Thomas in St Paul, Minn., graduating in 1984 with a degree in journalism. He then worked at the Albert Lea (Minn.) Tribune and served as managing editor there for three years. He joined The Forum in October 1989, working as a copy editor until 2000. Since then, he has worked as a reporter on several beats, including education, Fargo city government, business and military affairs. He is currently The Forum's K-12 education reporter.
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PELICAN RAPIDS, Minn. — Somali immigrants who come to live here quickly learn to deal with the huge differences between Africa and America. "For me, the only thing that was shocking was the accent, and the food, and the school system, and the weather. I think that's it," joked 16-year-old Najma Ahmed. But for Ahmed, a junior at Pelican Rapids High School, and other Somali students who study while their parents work at the local turkey processing plant, there is a constant. It is their religion, Islam.
FARGO - The Red River Zoo hopes that its two pairs of Pallas cats can develop a frisky furriendship that will litter-ally help bolster the species' long-term survival. The zoo recently introduced Eva, a 1-year-old female from California, to Sural, a 3-year-old from Japan — just in time for Valentine's Day. "We have had really outstanding success here, not only breeding them," but with having kittens survive," said Red River Zoo Executive Director Sally Jacobson.
FARGO — Warren "Duke" Albrecht Jr., who served as a judge for North Dakota's South Central Judicial District, and later as an administrative law judge for the Federal Energy Regulatory Administration and the Social Security Administration, died Saturday, Jan. 28, at his home after a long illness. He was 72. Warren Rudolph Henry Albrecht Jr. was born March 20, 1944, to Warren and Eileen Albrecht. Albrecht graduated from Bismarck High School in 1962, where he was captain of the football and track teams.
WASHINGTON — Senators and congressmen representing North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota voted along party lines Thursday and Friday, Jan. 12 and 13, as Republicans began setting the stage to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, the health care initiative touted as one of the high points of the Obama Administration. Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., and Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., voted for the repeal resolutions in their respective chambers.
FARGO — Fundraisers are nearly halfway to a $21.5 million goal to build a new St. Paul's Newman Center, a two-story chapel and a "faith-based" student apartment complex on the east side of the 1100 block of University Drive North, where the current Newman Center stands. That project, which takes up the north side of the block, would be complemented by a five-story apartment complex on the south half of that block, which would provide market housing for nearly 280 students at nearby North Dakota State University, according to project diagrams and the developer.
WILLISTON, N.D.—The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed its first North Dakota lawsuit charging that an employer in the state subjected an employee to sexual harassment because of his sexual orientation. The lawsuit was filed Thursday, Dec. 22, in North Dakota's U.S. District Court.
FARGO - Proffutt Limited Partnership beat out two other firms to develop a new student housing and retail complex on the 1600 block of North University Drive, just east of the North Dakota State University campus Executive governing board members of the NDSU Foundation and Alumni Association voted 7-3 on Wednesday, Dec. 21, to pick the Proffutt plan over two competing bids by Enclave Development and Roers.
FARGO — U.S. Sen. John Hoeven praised the efforts of the Fargo-area Mayor's Blue Ribbon Commission on Addiction as a potential template for the rest of the nation on how to tackle the growing problem of addiction to opioids and other substances. The commission "is a model for across the state and across the country," Hoeven, R-N.D., told attendees at a roundtable meeting Thursday, Dec. 15, at the Dakota Medical Foundation.
FARGO — Judge Myron Bright, a champion of equal rights for minorities and women and the longest-serving working judge on the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, has died. Bright, 97, died early Monday, Dec. 12, at Eventide Fargo. "He died peacefully with his entire family with him this morning, about 12:15 a.m." said Christian Golding, his son-in-law. "He was living history," Golding said. "He was more than just quite a man. He was a legend."
VALLEY CITY, N.D. — The former chief of the Valley City Police Department apparently took his gun from his holster and pointed it in the direction of an Army National Guard soldier on Thanksgiving Day, City Administrator David Schelkoph said Friday, Dec. 9. But Schelkoph insists that incident, and other past actions by the former chief or the general performance of his duties, didn't play a factor in the City Commission's decision to cut ties with Fred Thompson. Schelkoph also confirmed the city will pay Thompson $110,000 in severance pay on Jan. 3.