Panel Endorses Three For ND Board of Higher Education

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For Immediate Release
May 2, 2016
Contact: Dale Wetzel, Public Information Specialist
Office 701-328-2247
Cell: 701-400-8557
Panel Endorses Three For ND Board of Higher Education

BISMARCK, N.D., May 2, 2016 – A nominating committee on Monday recommended three finalists for Gov. Jack Dalrymple to consider for an appointment to the North Dakota Board of Higher Education.

The group includes Don Morton, the board’s vice chairman, who is a Microsoft Corp. executive in Fargo. Morton is seeking a second four-year term on the board, which he joined in 2012. His current term ends June 30.

The nominating committee also chose Thomas Atkinson, a Bismarck environmental engineer, and Wayne Trottier Jr., of Rugby, who works part time as the school superintendent in Sawyer, as finalists for the seat on the board.

The names of the three men will be forwarded to Dalrymple, who will decide on the appointment. The governor’s choice requires confirmation in the North Dakota Senate, but whomever he chooses will be eligible to serve until the Senate votes on the pick early next year.

The Board of Higher Education oversees the North Dakota University System, which has 11 public institutions – six four-year universities and five two-year colleges.

The nominating committee includes state Rep. Wes Belter, R-Fargo, the speaker of the North Dakota House; state Sen. Robert Erbele, R-Lehr, the president pro tempore of the North Dakota Senate; Nick Archuleta, president of North Dakota United, which represents educators and public employees; Chief Justice Gerald VandeWalle; and Kirsten Baesler, the North Dakota superintendent of public instruction, who is chairwoman of the panel.