Kim Hyatt is a reporter with The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead and a 2014 graduate of the University of Minnesota Duluth. She started her newspaper career at the Owatonna People’s Press covering arts and education. In 2016, she received Minnesota Newspaper Association's Dave Pyle New Journalist Award and later that year she joined The Forum newsroom.
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FERGUS FALLS, Minn. — Even before the stroke of Gov. Mark Dayton's pen on the state bonding bill, demolition is underway at a sprawling historic state hospital campus here. This week, demolition crews were busy at the Kirkbride, formerly the Fergus Falls Regional Treatment Center, tearing down the new administrative building constructed in the 1950s.
FARGO — One group wants the community to have a deeper conversation around the simple question asked at checkout aisles: "Is plastic OK?" The Fargo-Moorhead Plastic Bag Task Force found that the average grocery store here uses 52,400 pounds of plastic bags each year. Less than 5 percent of those are recycled, which is why many are found scattering in empty fields, floating in the Red River and hanging in trees.
MOORHEAD — A 62-year-old homeless man accused of stealing more than $31,000 worth of devices from a Bemidji cellphone store at gunpoint was arrested here after authorities traced two of the stolen phones in Fargo-Moorhead. Ricky Lee Lidel, of Bemidji, was arrested on or around May 15 at a local homeless shelter where staff confirmed with officers he was a resident, according to court documents. Days before Lindel's arrest, investigators obtained a court order to trace two phones Lidel is accused of stealing from the AT&T store in Bemidji on May 12.
COLFAX, N.D. — The Richland 44 School Board accepted another resignation on Thursday, May 17, which was the first meeting led by a new superintendent hired after allegations of the so- called "rape game" surfaced at the start of the year. Superintendent Dean Koppelman, formerly of Valley City Public Schools, read the resignation letter submitted to the board by Ben Hannasch, librarian and social studies teacher. Hannasch stated in his letter that he had accepted a new position with Northern Cass School.
FARGO – A medical marijuana facility in Fargo and another in Bismarck are blazing ahead in registering with the North Dakota Department of Health to grow and sell to dispensaries across the state. GR Vending ND LLC, also known as Grassroots Cannabis, in Fargo was selected by the department’s division of medical marijuana to move forward with the registration process, according to an announcement Wednesday, May 16, by division director Jason Wahl.
COLFAX, N.D. — A recall election targeting three members on the Richland 44 School Board is coming up in August, but no one has filed to challenge them. A committee successfully gathered enough signatures to spark a recall, which was approved by the North Dakota Secretary of State's Office in March. It targets three of seven board members: Sarah Myers, Josh Mjoness and President Lisa Amundson.
FARGO – As Mother’s Day approaches, Nancy William Hafner is anxious to hear from her 33-year-old son from Fargo who was reported missing in Santa Cruz County, Calif. Christopher Ryan Yonan was reported missing April 25, according to Sgt. Brian Cleveland of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office. Cleveland said there’s “nothing out of the ordinary in the report” and that authorities don’t believe the circumstances are suspicious.
MOORHEAD — A superintendent on paid leave at a small North Dakota school district caught in a firestorm of sexual misconduct allegations against male students has applied, along with teachers from the district, to establish a charter school in Moorhead. Documents obtained by The Forum through a public records request show that Tim Godfrey, the superintendent, and four teachers from Richland 44 School District in Colfax, N.D., submitted an application April 23 to the Minnesota Department of Education to start Great Plains School of Technology and Innovation.
FARGO — The right conditions are in place for a fire to go wrong, and fast. High winds up to 35 mph, low humidity, warm temperatures and brown, dry vegetation have put most of North Dakota and Minnesota at an elevated risk of grass fires and wildfires this weekend and into next week. Folks should proceed with caution if planning to do a controlled burn or having a backyard fire, said Jim Prochniak, Cass County's emergency manager. "That wind can take those sparks," Prochniak said. "Exercise some better judgement, and be careful."
COLFAX, N.D. — The embattled Richland 44 School District has named a new superintendent to lead the school after an investigation revealed allegations of sexual misconduct and hazing among male students. Dean Koppelman, 63, former superintendent for the Valley City Public School District, will step in as substitute superintendent of Richland. He has 25 years of education experience, with the last 18 years spent in Valley City before his retirement in 2016.