Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.
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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.
FARGO—A Fargo woman is calling for a cookie bakery to follow up with its employees after a worker referred to her police officer boyfriend as a "pig." Elizabeth Nelson said she went to Insomnia Cookies, 412 Broadway, shortly after 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 12, to wait for her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, who she said she'd rather not name, pulled his police vehicle into a spot across the street. That's when she said an employee looked up, saw his car and said something to the effect of, "Oh, the little pigs just pulled up."
MOORHEAD—Fargo-Moorhead's businesses and residents are no longer isolated from the events and conditions happening across the world, according to Anne Blackhurst. "It is increasingly obvious that understanding the social, cultural and economic conditions of other countries is critical to our own well-being and our collective future," said Blackhurst, president of Minnesota State University Moorhead, during a Wednesday, April 12, event on campus. And that's especially the case with China, she said.
MOORHEAD—U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer's got spirit, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The North Dakota Republican was honored with an award for his votes on business-friendly issues Wednesday, April 12, during a morning reception at the Fargo Moorhead West Fargo Chamber, 202 1st Ave. N.
FARGO—It just might be a low-tech fake email, not a high-tech hacking scheme, that makes it hard for businesses and organizations to safeguard information in modern times. Firewalls and cutting-edge technology designed to keep networks safe and secure can be undone simply by asking employees to click a link. An email requesting employee W-2s that looks like it's coming from the CEO can turn a well-meaning worker into the unwitting source of a data leak.