April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers business and political stories. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family continues to raise registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as the Dickinson city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
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DEVILS LAKE, N.D.&mdashDevils Lake will part ways with two police leaders accused of creating low morale in the department, but not before paying out more than $76,000 to the embattled officers. The Devils Lake City Commission on Monday approved separation agreements for Chief Keith Schroeder and Capt. Jon Barnett. Both officers have been on administrative paid leave since April 3.
THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn.—Incentives that Digi-Key Electronics says it needs to bring 1,000 jobs to Thief River Falls appear to have wide support, but nothing is certain as Gov. Mark Dayton threatens to veto the spending bill containing them. "We have 100 percent support throughout the House, Senate and even in the Governor's Office," Thief River Falls Mayor Brian Holmer said of the incentives. "It's just too bad it wound up in an omnibus bill that ... the governor is saying he is going to veto right away. It's destined for failure the first time around."
DEVILS LAKE—Devils Lake leaders broke North Dakota's open meetings law when they met behind closed doors to discuss a report about the city's embattled police chief and his second-in-command, the state's attorney general said Friday.
THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn.—The closing of Arctic Cat's headquarters in Minneapolis could bring dozens of workers back to Thief River Falls, as its new corporate owners plan to expand operations in the far northwest Minnesota city. Textron Inc., which bought Arctic Cat for $247 million in January, announced plans to move production of its Stampede, an off-road vehicle, from its facility in Augusta, Ga., to Thief River Falls. It's unclear when the move will happen, but Textron spokesman Brandon Haddock told the Thief River Falls Times it would be soon.
GRAND FORKS—An internet, cable and phone provider Midco announced Wednesday it is building an $8 million data center in Grand Forks and also upgrading internet speeds in the market.
DALLAS—An unmanned aircraft park near Grand Forks will begin flying large drones beyond the visual line of sight this summer after securing the needed technology to allow the flights. Pilots at Grand Sky will be allowed to fly unmanned aircraft, also known as drones, within 60 nautical miles of the business park on Grand Forks Air Force Base land, Grand Sky executives announced Monday at Xponential, a convention hosted in Dallas by Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International.
WALHALLA, N.D.—A nonprofit that is buying a northeastern North Dakota ski resort has big plans for the recreational area, with leaders saying the popular attraction is a key point in the upper Red River Valley's success. The recently founded Pembina Gorge Foundation has signed a purchase agreement for the Frost Fire Ski Mountain and Amphitheater, according to a new release. The foundation expects to close on the property by the end of May.
ROLLA, N.D.—North Dakota's head investigation agency has closed the case on the Rolette County shooting that took the life of a sheriff's deputy, but the state's attorney there says the case is still ongoing and that Marsy's Law prevents him from releasing the names of those involved, including the shooter's.
BISMARCK—North Dakota's attorney general has asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit against him that claims a woman was fired after reporting a Devils Lake care facility for at-risk children ignored "cruel conduct" by a co-worker. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Ramsey County District Court filed a 29-page memorandum this week asking to be dismissed from the case as defendants.
A Washington Post reporter who moved to a Minnesota county he once called "the absolute worst place to live in America" has helped the population grow by one. Christopher Ingraham, a politics, drug policy and data journalist, told the Herald he and his wife, Briana, were having a baby in June, but William Jeffrey Sean Ingraham came six weeks early at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, according to the reporter's Facebook page.