Big news today from Governor-elect Doug Burgum.
Forum News Service reporter Mike Nowatzki will be joining his team as communications director according to a press release which just went out.
Full disclosure, I also work for the Forum News Service and Nowatzki is a colleague of mine.
“With a deep understanding of North Dakota’s challenges and opportunities, Mike is uniquely qualified to advance our agenda of balancing the budget without raising taxes, diversifying the economy and implementing the Main Street Initiative,” Burgum said of Nowatzki in a press release (read it below). “Mike is a strong communicator and we look forward to having him join our team.”
“Doug Burgum is a visionary who has spent his life working to foster innovation and make North Dakota even more exceptional,” Nowatzki says in the same release. “I am truly honored by this opportunity and excited to get started.”
A reporter who covered the elections this cycle going to work in the administration of one of the candidates who won an election is probably going to raise some eyebrows. Though I must say that I’ve always admired Nowatzki’s work. I’ve long felt he’s one of the best, fairest reporters in the state. I didn’t detect a hint of bias in his reporting during the election, and he’s hardly the first reporter to go to work in politics after a career in journalism.
I’m not surprised that Burgum, who knows talent when he sees it, would hire Nowatzki.
I reached out to Marvin Nelson, Burgum’s Democratic challenger during the campaign, for a response but he wasn’t immediately available. Robert Haider, executive director for the North Dakota Democratic Party, also didn’t pick up when I phoned.
Here’s the full press release: