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Pioneer Editorial: Cheers and Jeers

Cheer: North Country welcomes CEO

Paul Hanson took over last week as chief executive officer and president of North Country Health Services after 11 years of successful leadership and retirement of Jim Hanko, CEO and president since 1998. Hanson brings decades of experience in executive health care to the organization with degrees in health care administration, long-term care administration and health administration. He also knows North Country Minnesota with 23 years of vacationing in the area north of Park Rapids. We look forward to many years of successful administration by Hanson.

Cheer: Sattgast reopens

Bemidji State University cut the ribbon Friday on the newly renovated Sattgast Hall to usher in an era of advanced scientific study and research. Many hands held the scissors including BSU President Jon Quistgaard, Kraus Anderson Project Manager Travis Barnes, BSU Vice President for Finance Bill Maki, BSU Interim Dean of the College of Health Sciences and Human Ecology Patricia Rogers, BSU Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Patrick Guilfoile, BSU Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Elizabeth Dunn and BSU Interim President for Academic Affairs Nancy Erickson. The reopening adds to the success of BSU and Bemidji as a regional higher education center.

Jeer: Jobless claims

There seems to be a disconnect in the economic downturn the country is currently experiencing. First-time claims for jobless benefits increased more than expected during the last week of September, but consumer spending jumped by the most in nearly eight years in August. Economists note than households face rising unemployment and tight credit conditions. The weak job market should mean more families are being frugal, but consumerism seems to trump thrift even in hard times.

Cheer: Helps in healing

The second annual Walk to Remember Saturday sponsored by North Country Health Services helps families -- parents, grandparents and siblings -- come to terms with the deaths of infants lost to still birth, miscarriage, newborn death and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. To commemorate the brief existence of these persons give comfort to all concerned.