Before arriving at the Ina Mae Rude Entrepreneur Center for the annual Frank Wenstrom Lecture, North Dakota Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford had been across the map and back in a single day.
For him, it’s all too familiar.
“Yesterday I was in Williston, talking about the Main Street Initiative and higher education governance reform,” Sanford told attendees. “Then in the middle of the night I drove to Grand Forks.”
After multiple commission meetings in Grand Forks on last Wednesday morning, he found out the state had won a unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) pilot program award, which meant flying back to Bismarck between engagements. He got back to Grand Forks to meet with Minnkota Power Cooperative that afternoon, then it was on to the Wenstrom Lecture at UND.
“Generally I’ll have a couple of talking points for something like this, but I looked at what this was and knew I didn’t need any,” Sanford said. “This is up my alley. Not only is the lecture coincidentally named for the 28th lieutenant governor (of North Dakota), but focusing on public service — that’s something near and dear to my heart.”
The lecture — put on by the College of Business & Public Administration (CoBPA) — serves to highlight contemporary issues in North Dakota politics, governance and public service. Wenstrom served as lieutenant governor under William Guy from 1957 to 1960.
Sanford used the occasion as an opportunity to tell his story of public service, one that’s interwoven in business, governance and family legacy.