North Dakota’s contributions to Winter Olympics

Bob Wood


Watching the first days of the winter Olympics I have been reminded how things have changed. Fifty-some years ago I was in the Far East and Korea for 19 Months (US Army). It was a long way from Western North Dakota. The cold weather, the mountains and the geo-political tension appears the same. But clearly economic growth, communications and technology have brought us much closer and added much to the games.

Which prompted another thought: all North Dakotans can be proud of our contributions to the Olympic Winter games of 2018. First, our state is one of 31 that are represented by outstanding athletes. Jocelyne Lamoueux-Davidson and Monique Lamoueux-Morando, sisters and twins, are from (Grand Forks). On the US Women’s Hockey team, they grew up playing hockey and in college, played their final three years at UND. Are they good? You bet! They both have Silver medals from 2010 and 2014. Talent and experience. Hard to beat.

Another contribution North Dakota is making is our rapidly growing oil and gas development which helps make possible the power and manufacturing capabilities of modern life. Innovations in plastics, textiles, ceramics and other tech-related products help propel Olympic athletes faster and further than ever before. Many of these innovative products are only possible through the use of natural gas processes. We all ultimately benefit from those developments.

The motto of the modern Olympic games is “Faster, Higher, Stronger.” Perhaps a secondary motto could be “Safer, Tougher, Smarter,” reflecting the benefits of technologies and innovative manufacturing that are supported by a renaissance in the American energy industry and in natural gas and oil development in North Dakota.