Apr 18, 2019 Fort Report
To You and Your Family: Happy Passover and Blessed Easter!
Apr 12, 2019 Fort Report
As we continue as a state to recover from the massive flooding, so many beautiful stories of neighbor helping neighbor and personal sacrifice have emerged.  One particular story of heroism stands out.  James Wilke was a farmer from near Columbus who gave his life during the...
Apr 5, 2019 Fort Report
In 1971, at the peak of protests against the Vietnam War, the U.S. passed the Twenty-Sixth Amendment, lowering the voting age in state and federal elections from 21 to 18.  It was the swiftest passage of any amendment in American history.  Young people strongly supported the...
Mar 29, 2019 Fort Report
The catastrophic flooding in Nebraska shattered a too-comfortable truth about residing in the Heartland.  If pressed, most of us would admit to a little self-satisfaction in not having to endure the annual hurricanes that plague the Southeast, the wildfires that plague the West...
Mar 24, 2019 Fort Report
Pretty hard to get the mind around a 500-year flood.  Standing on the ridge at Offutt Air Force Base, where the Platte River flowing east meets the Missouri River flowing south, I saw how rain on top of snow on top of frozen ground unleashed an unprecedented force of water that...
Mar 15, 2019 Fort Report
Josh Moenning is the Mayor of Norfolk and a close friend of mine.  Given the ongoing flooding, over a third of Norfolk had to evacuate because of rising water concerns.  I texted Josh, and I called him.  He did not answer me­­––and I am glad he didn’t.  I know he is busy taking...
Mar 8, 2019 Fort Report
This might seem like an odd time to write about the rituals of summer when the frozen ground is covered by seven inches of snow.  This time of year, however, is when the important niche rural business of corn detasseling makes plans for summer hiring of local teens.  While only...
Mar 2, 2019 Fort Report
You may not see this on TV, but much of the work in Washington goes on outside the glare of media.  It’s in committees where the hard work of advocating for lower drug prices, safer foods, and helping the world’s most vulnerable is accomplished.  Here are two examples from this...
Feb 22, 2019 Fort Report
Hannah Esch, an agriculture student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Nebraska Beef Ambassador, was surprised on a recent visit with young school children.  When asked a basic question about where food comes from, a third-grader from a rural community answered that...
Feb 15, 2019 Fort Report
Early one morning this week, I headed to the United States Department of Agriculture for a breakfast meeting with Secretary Sonny Perdue from Georgia.  We had a productive discussion about the new internet initiative for rural America, the ecosystem of rural development, and the...