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We are excited to facilitate the 26th annual Country Woman of the Year award for our sister publication, Farm & Ranch Guide.

Making the continuation of this program possible is the generous sponsorship of the North Dakotans for Comprehensive Energy Solutions.

When I met with Tammy Ibach, who heads that organization, she immediately saw the value of the partnership, both for her organization and for the families who daily carry out the ever-tougher demands associated with farming, ranching or dairy operations.

To date we have about a dozen nominations for Country Woman of the Year, and we expect many more before the mid-month deadline.

We are shifting the event from a lunch event to a reception at the North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum on Sept. 26 from 6 to 8 p.m.

We decided on the reception format to enhance the interaction of our guests with one another, our sponsor and some special entertainment we are lining up.

While we are still putting the program together, we can announce that Connie Gjermundson, a western North Dakota native who grew up on a ranch in Marshall, will entertain us with her uniquely inspired country music.

Connie was involved in rodeo performance beginning with Little Britches Rodeo and continuing through high school. Connie recently performed in Medora at the induction of her brother Brad Gjermundson, a multiyear world champion cowboy, into the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame.

We also will be entertained by North Dakota poet laureate Larry Woiwode. Larry’s work has been widely published in magazines and newspapers across the country, but he is perhaps best known for his novels, a commentary titled “Acts,” and a biography of Harold Schafer.

As I mentioned earlier, the program is still being planned, but we will have additional announcements as plans are finalized.

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how helpful Dave Borlaug has been in helping me put this program together.

Dave is known these days as “the Capital Gallery guy,” but in another lifetime he was the founder and publisher of Farm & Ranch Guide. Dave has an extensive network of contacts in both his new world and the old, and his willingness to share and collaborate is incredibly valuable.

Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “Many ideas grow better when transplanted into another mind than the one where they sprang up.”

We believe this Country Woman of the Year event will be the best ever because we have Tammy Ibach, Dave Borlaug and many others taking our idea and making it better.

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Gary Adkisson is publisher of The Bismarck Tribune.

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