Published September 11 2011
Fargo North adds five to Hall of Fame
A former North High teacher and four distinguished graduates will be honored in the noon event at the hotel, 201 5th St. N.
Tickets are $15 per person and must be purchased by Tuesday by calling (701) 446-2405, or at the North High office.
- Donn Hjelle: He obtained a bachelor’s degree in biology and education at Minnesota State University Moorhead in 1959 and a master’s degree from the University of Northern Iowa. He joined the Fargo School District in 1964, teaching at Central High School one year and then three years at North.
He then taught elsewhere before returning to North in 1975 and teaching until 2000.
He earned the Fargo Public Schools “Celebration of Excellence Award” in 1986 and l989; North High “Teacher of the Year” for the 1992-93 school year; and “Outstanding Biology Teacher Award for North Dakota” in 1996.
- Michael Solberg: The 1991 graduate of North also graduated from Concordia College in 1995 and William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul in 1998.
He was CEO of Northern Capital Trust. In 2004, he became chief operating officer of State Bank and Trust. He was named president of the firm in 2009.
He launched the bank’s “Pay It Forward” project, leading to more than $2.1 million being given to individuals and organizations in need.
- Michael Strommen: He is a 1986 graduate of North High. He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of North Dakota in 1991 and a doctorate in atmospheric chemistry from the University of North Carolina in 1999.
He is the global new business manager for the 3M Renewable Energy Division, which he founded.
- John Nelson: The 1979 North High grad has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and coaching from North Dakota State University. In 1991, he received a master’s degree in education administration NDSU.
He taught and coached in Hazen, N.D., and West Fargo before starting at Ben Franklin Junior High School in 1987. He is now principal at Ben Franklin.
He was the Fargo PTA Outstanding Administrator (2002, 2007), and the MetLife/NASSP North Dakota Middle School Principal of the Year in 2010. He was also North Dakota Wrestling Official of the Year in 2001.
- James Wiedmann: The 1967 North High grad set several football school records as a senior. He played football for UND, and earned a bachelor’s degree in business.
He’s worked in the agricultural machinery industry for many years. In 1983, he started Firebird Fiberglass, which built off-road vehicle canopies. In 1995, the firm created a division called Roadside Relics, which builds reproductions of historic Americana, such as gas pumps, ice chests, clocks and vending machines.