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Press Release

State School Superintendent Kirsten Baesler on Wednesday asked North Dakotans to apply for a state Board of Higher Education seat that is coming open July 1.

The person who is chosen will succeed Don Morton, a former SBHE chairman and retired senior director at Microsoft Corp. in Fargo. Morton is finishing his second four-year term on the Board of Higher Education in June. He is ineligible for reappointment. His successor will be appointed to a four-year term.

North Dakotans who are interested in the position must apply by 5 p.m. Friday, May 29. Late applications will not be accepted. They may be emailed to Baesler’s executive assistant, Patty Carmichael, or sent by regular mail to the Department of Public Instruction, 600 E. Boulevard Ave., Dept. 201, Bismarck, ND, 58505.

Baesler is chairwoman of a nominating committee that reviews applications for the board and recommends potential appointments to Gov. Doug Burgum. Last week, the committee recommended three candidates for a separate SBHE opening created by the January resignation of Dan Traynor, who was appointed to a federal judgeship.

Fourteen people applied for the Traynor vacancy. Baesler said the 11 candidates who were not chosen as finalists have been asked to apply for the opening being created by Morton’s departure. New applicants are welcome. They must fill out the application, submit a resume, and supply no more than six letters of recommendation.

The Board of Higher Education sets policy for the North Dakota University System and oversees its operations. The system includes six four-year universities and five two-year colleges. It has eight voting members, including a North Dakota University System student who represents students, and two nonvoting members who represent the system’s faculty and staff..

Aside from Baesler, the nominating committee’s members are Chief Justice Jon Jensen; state Rep. Lawrence Klemin, R-Bismarck, the speaker of the North Dakota House; state Sen. Oley Larsen, R-Minot, the president pro tempore of the North Dakota Senate; and Nick Archuleta, president of North Dakota United, an organization that represents public school teachers and public employees.

Morton’s successor will begin service July 1. The person who is chosen will be subject to confirmation by the North Dakota Senate during the Legislature’s next session.

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