Partners in Progress
Partners in Progress
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April 2014
North Dakota is Making Headlines

North Dakota is Leaving South Dakota in the Dust

North Dakota and South Dakota have been quiet rivals ever since Nov. 2, 1889, the day the Dakota Territory was split in two and they were admitted to the union as states. 

North Dakota is Leaving South Dakota in the Dust -

North Dakota Ranks First in Job Creation

For the fifth consecutive year, the Gallup Job Creation Index has ranked North Dakota the nation’s best state for creating jobs.

North Dakota Ranks First in Job Creation -

North Dakota Named Happiest State

When it comes to the nation's well-being, North Dakota can't be beat as the happiest, according to a new Gallup poll, dethroning Hawaii after four years.

North Dakota Named Happiest State -

Bismarck Named One of Nation's Fastest Growing Economies

An article by 24/7 Wall Street has named Bismarck #6 in the fastest growing economies in the United States, citing its gross metro product (GMP) change from 2013, projected 2014 GMP growth and low unemployement rate.

Bismarck Named One of Nation's Fastest Growing Economies -

Business Insider Names Bismarck and Fargo 'Fastest Growing Cities' 

Business Insider has named Fargo (#5) and Bismarck (#6) as two of the top 12 fastest growing cities in America. The 12 cities listed all saw Gross Metro Product grow by 4 percent or more in 2013.

Bismarck and Fargo Named  'Fastest Growing Cities' - Business Insider

North Dakota Census Estimates Show Statewide Population Growth

The U.S. Census Bureau released the agency’s annual metropolitan/micropolitan area and county population estimates showing population growth across all regions of North Dakota. The state had a number of communities and counties ranked as some of the fastest growing in the nation. A metro area contains a population of 50,000 or more, while a micro area contains at least 10,000, but less than 50,000.

North Dakota Census Estimates Show Statewide Population Growth - ND Governor's Office


Spectrum Aeromed Founder is 2014 North Dakota Small Business Person of the Year
Dean.jpgDean Atchison, Spectrum Aeromed, has been selected as the U.S. Small Business Administration's 2014 North Dakota Small Business Person of the Year. This annual award recognizes exceptional business owners who demonstrate the entrepreneurial spirit in starting and growing a successful business. Atchison was selected following a statewide competition.

Atchison, along with other top entrepreneurs from across the nation, will be honored at the SBA's National Small Business Week events, May 15-16, in Washington, D.C.

Spectrum Aeromed Founder is 2014 North Dakota Small Business Person of the Year -


Dakota Spirit AgEnergy Biorefinery Breaks Ground
Construction has begun on Dakota Spirit AgEnergy, a new biorefinery, co-located next to the Spiritwood Station combined heat and P1020181.JPGpower plant near Jamestown, ND.

The biorefinery will utilize steam from Spiritwood Station to produce 65 MGY ethanol, distillers grains and fuel-grade corn oil. Future growth opportunities for the biorefinery are emerging with cellulosic, isobutanol and other biofuel technologies.

Great River Energy is leading the development of this enterprise along with key stakeholders including Jamestown Stutsman Development Corporation, Karges-Faulconbridge, Inc., McGough Construction and Cappello Capital Corp.

North Dakota Announces Workforce Recruitment Campaign
goodlife.jpgLt. Gov. Drew Wrigley and the North Dakota Economic Development Foundation announced a new workforce recruitment campaign aimed at attracting a permanent private-sector workforce to meet the growing needs of North Dakota’s robust economy. The “Find the Good Life in North Dakota” campaign will use targeted marketing and event strategies to attract potential new residents to North Dakota.

North Dakota Announces Workforce Recruitment Campaign -


Renewable Energy Program Accepting Applications
0RenewNRGColor.jpgThe North Dakota Renewable Energy Program is accepeting applications through May 1. The Renewable Energy Program promotes the growth of North Dakota's renewable energy industries through research, development, marketing and education. Awards are limited to $500,000 and require a 50 percent match. View the complete program policies, application template and other resources at For questions please contact Karlene at or Andrea at


Research ND Grants Available
Research ND promotes the development and commercialization of products and processes through industry/university research partnerships. Through Research ND, firms have the opportunity to leverage their research, development and commercialization funds and gain access to the creative talents and extensive research base of North Dakota’s Research Universities.

Research ND provides matching funds to help companies pay for the university research. Projects are initiated by the companies to meet their own research and development goals. Research ND matching funds are awarded on a competitive basis for projects based on proposals submitted jointly by researchers from one North Dakota Research University and a private sector partner.

For more information about Research ND visit


Cirrus Aircraft Reports Improved Sales, More Jobs in Grand Forks
cirrus.jpgAn aircraft maker with a factory in Grand Forks announced that it shipped 9 percent more planes last year than it had in 2012. Along with that increase, Duluth-based Cirrus Aircraft's workforce in Grand Forks has grown by almost 75 percent in the past 18 months. And with new projects in development and the national economy slowly improving, Cirrus executives are optimistic about the future.

Cirrus Aircraft Reports Improved Sales, More Jobs in Grand Forks -


North Dakota Ranked #6 for Wind Generation in 2013
American wind power topped 4 percent of the U.S. power grid for the first time last year and has delivered 30 percent of all new generating capacity for the last five years.The electricity generated by American wind power has more than tripled since 2008 not only due to significant growth in new wind projects but also technology innovation leading to more productive wind turbines. All renewable energy sources now deliver nearly 13 percent of the nation’s electricity. North Dakota ranked #6, following Iowa, South Dakota, Kansas, Idaho and Minnesota. Source: AWEA, Mar 2013


Economic Development Roundtable Cancelled
Due to scheduling conflicts we will be canceling the next Economic Development Roundtable, originally scheduled for May 14. Commerce will be using this time to evaluate the roundtables that have traditionally been held every six months and determine whether they are still providing value for local developers. 



Calendar.jpgNew Professionals Day
May 13
9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. (includes lunch)

The New Professional's Day is an opportunity for local economic development professionals, community leaders involved in economic development, new Commerce employees and others to learn more about the Department of Commerce. The Commerce leadership team and program managers meet with attendees to discuss their needs and interests, and how Commerce programs and services may help their efforts. Contact Brianna Ludwig at 701-328-5383 to register or for more details.

North Dakota Department of Commerce
1600 E. Century Ave., Suite 2
Bismarck, ND 58503 | 701.328.5300
More info on North Dakota:
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