“Crank it up for another 90 seconds with A Preacher in the Patch …. Oil Patch, that is.” That catchphrase is well-known to radio listeners in western North Dakota, where lifelong Williston man Ron Evitt began a radio ministry in 1997 incorporating his oilfield background.
Kathleen Hartman and her husband of 12 years will fly on an airplane together for the first time this week. Hartman and her husband, Tom, have taken vacations before, but because he’s usually on the road as a truck driver, they typically fly in from different locations.
With “now hiring” signs posted throughout the Bakken, even the agency charged with filling job openings struggles to keep a full staff. Cindy Sanford, manager of the Williston branch of Job Service North Dakota, is often looking to fill vacancies in her own office while also helping companies find workers.
Two women-run coffee stands have attention-getting names, especially in this male-dominated oil boomtown. While one business, C Cups Espresso, is risqué in name only, competitor Boomtown Babes Espresso features sexy baristas and provocative humor.
When former Bison football player Scott Stoczynski learned that he’d be stationed in Williston with the North Dakota Highway Patrol, he joked with his sister that she should join him. Angela Stoczynski, two years older than her brother, had been struggling to find a teaching job in the family’s home state of Illinois.
When John Harju graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1986, it was a bad time to be a geologist in the state. “It was an absolutely dismal time, there was no work,” Harju said. But later in his career, Harju found himself in the right place at the right time.
Former Kentucky man Kaz Matsubara followed up a complete career change with a move to North Dakota. Matsubara went back to school and became certified as a massage therapist. He began working in his new profession in Lexington, but the slow economy there made it difficult to attract customers.
Carol Rogne’s business is based in Fargo, but its growing customer base is in North Dakota’s Oil Patch. DFC Consultants, which Rogne founded in Dickinson 24 years ago, offers business software and other services.
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