BISMARCK, N.D.  – Award-winning author and Wahpeton native Louise Erdrich was today named the 39th recipient of the North Dakota Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award, the state’s highest commendation.Gov. Jack Dalrymple will officially present Erdrich with the award April 19 in Wahpeton. Dalrymple praised Erdrich’s body of work.“Her prolific compilation of novels, poetry and children’s books has earned national and international acclaim and success, including a National Book Award and being selected a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Throughout her career, Louise has maintained strong ties to North Dakota, often featuring her home state in her books. She has proudly represented our great state and it is my privilege to honor her with this prestigious recognition,” Dalrymple said in a news release.Erdrich is the author of 14 novels, as well as volumes of poetry, children’s books, and a memoir of early motherhood. Her 1984 novel “Love Medicine” won the National Book Critics Circle Award. “The Last Report on Miracles at Little No Horse” was a finalist for the National Book Award. “The Plague of Doves,” published in 2008, won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2009. On November 15, 2012, she won the National Book Award for her latest novel, “The Round House”.Karen Louise Erdrich was born in Little Falls, Minn., in 1954, and grew up in Wahpeton, where her parents worked for the Bureau of Indian Affairs School. Erdrich is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa. She graduated from Dartmouth College and received a master of fine arts degree from Johns Hopkins University.“An Evening with Louise Erdrich” will begin at 7 p.m. April 19, at the North Dakota State College of Science Student Center. Dalrymple will unveil a portrait of Erdrich that will hang in the state Capitol in Bismarck, along with the portraits of other notable North Dakotans. Erdrich will give a reading from her work following the presentation. A reception and book signing will follow at the Red Door Art Gallery in Wahpeton. The public is invited to attend.On April 20, Erdrich will appear with her sisters, Lise Erdrich, Heid Erdrich and Angela Erdrich, to read stories and poems, present images of their visual art and offer an open discussion about their lives as artists and growing up together in Wahpeton. The event will begin at 10 a.m. at the NDSCS Stern Cultural Center.

By Helmut Schmidt

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