Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.
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FARGO — The family of missing restaurateur Rodolfo Romo Garcia is keeping pressure on authorities as the investigation into his whereabouts stretches on. Two of his sisters and their husbands came from Omaha and Sioux Falls, S.D., to meet with Fargo Police Detective Josh Loos on Wednesday, June 21, to share what they know and get an update. The owner of three Romo's Tacos restaurants who did business in town as Rodolfo Romo was reported missing June 2. Fargo Police Officer Jessica Schindeldecker said there was no new information in the case to report Wednesday.
FARGO — All outward signs suggested Rodolfo Romo was ready to put behind him the recent failure of Magnolia's, a downtown Fargo restaurant he opened and quickly shuttered. In the past few weeks, the restaurateur best known for his three Romo's Tacos locations in Fargo renewed a liquor license and discussed his plans to find more workers to keep his businesses thriving. But Romo, 43, suddenly disappeared, and his restaurants are now closed after his family reported him missing.
FARGO—The leaders of Swanson Health Products are trusting their guts when it comes to the company's first-ever launch of a new full line of products. The Fargo-based vitamin and supplement distributor, headquartered at 4075 40th Ave. S., introduced 14 probiotic supplements on May 11. While Swanson already sold a basic line of related supplements, Chief Innovation Officer Shane Durkee said the market has shifted as new research finds benefits of refining and boosting the potency.
FARGO—The line between air and ground travel is getting blurrier with the rise of self-driving vehicles and drones, but the U.S. Secretary of Transportation said there are some clear hurdles to overcome to keep the technology moving smoothly. Elaine Chao said Wednesday, May 31, that the Donald Trump administration has started working to address challenges of the burgeoning unmanned aerial systems, or UAS, industry. But a top priority is simply modernizing the air traffic control system, she said during remarks at the third annual Drone Focus Conference in Fargo.
Dustin Hasbrouck is a proud booster of Microsoft in Fargo, and that's partially because of the three months of pay he got for not working there. The support escalation engineer became a father Dec. 19, 2016, with the birth of his son, Brekken. Rather than being forced to juggle his new duties at home with his career, he benefited from a change to the company's parental leave policy that went into effect in November 2015.
FARGO—North Dakota needs to diversify its economy to buffer itself from the ups and downs of the "roller coaster of commodities," according to the President and CEO of the Bank of North Dakota. That's why Eric Hardmeyer said the bank has spent more than a year thinking about the role it can play in diversifying the economy, and they have a plan that could help. "As we looked at it, we decided what better way than to help entrepreneurs and businesses develop?" he said.
FARGO—A company that describes itself as the "Uber of private jets" could've set up anywhere, and the founders chose Fargo. TapJets Inc., which launched in April 2016, is the only company in the world that offers instant flight booking through an app. Customers can hail a jet to pick them up at their nearest airport in as little as an hour and fly them to their destination of choice within the contiguous United States.
FARGO — Google's search and advertising tools added up to a big economic impact in North Dakota and Minnesota last year. The online search and technology company's latest Google Economic Impact report, released Wednesday, May 10, said its tools helped provide $222 billion of economic activity for 1.5 million businesses, website publishers and nonprofits nationwide in 2016. That number includes $156 million of economic activity for 1,700 North Dakota businesses and $4.6 billion of activity for 22,000 businesses in Minnesota.
FARGO—When one business closes, several more get ready to open, or so it seemed earlier this week as eager bidders snatched up everything from ovens to barstools at a soon-to-be demolished former restaurant. It's been vacant since closing in November, but Lone Star Steakhouse, 4328 13th Ave. S., was busy Monday, April 17, as people paid for appliances, art, tables and more that they bought in an online auction hosted by Fargo Liquidators.
FARGO—An arts and crafts store and education center for knitters will close this week, but not for long as it changes to a new member-supported business model. Prairie Yarns, 2607 S. University Drive, will close at 5 p.m. Friday, April 21, and reopen in early June as Prairie Yarns Fiber Arts Center.