Kim Ukura has served as the editor of the Morris Sun Tribune since August 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota, Morris in 2008 with degrees in English and journalism. She earned a master's degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 2010. Prior to returning to Morris to work at the Sun Tribune, she worked in trade publishing. She has been recognized by the Minnesota Newspaper Association for human interest, multimedia, business and public affairs reporting.
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MORRIS - Six candidates for the Stevens County Board of Commissioners answered questions about their visions for the future of Stevens County and specifics about the Stevens County Courthouse at a candidate forum at the American Legion on Thursday, Oct. 18. In their introductions, all six candidates emphasized their interest in helping balance the county budget, although most also expressed concern about how cuts to state and federal funding have impacted Stevens County.
MORRIS - By Kim Ukura Sun Tribune The Morris Area School Board voted Tuesday to approve a two-year, experimental trap shooting team that will be coached by FFA advisors Natasha Mortenson and Nick Milbrandt. Superintendent Scott Monson told the board that although he thinks trap shooting can be a good, lifelong skill, he did not recommend approving the team because trap shooting is not officially sponsored by the Minnesota State High School League. "Where do you draw the line between what we will support as a school district and what we won't?" asked Monson.
MORRIS - On Thursday, Oct. 4, the Morris Area and Cyrus school boards met for the first time in a joint work session to discuss a potential plan to consolidate the two school districts. Declining enrollment and increased costs have left the Cyrus School District in debt and struggling to provide services to students.
MORRIS - The Stevens County Board of Commissioners will continue explore changing the structure of the county's emergency management department after county staff raised questions about how a new position would impact chain-of-command in an emergency. Human Resource Director Janet Raguse presented the board with a job description for a new Emergency Management Director/Safety Coordinator at their meeting Tuesday. Currently, Sheriff Randy Willis serves as the county emergency management director, but earlier this month suggested changing the structure of his office.
MORRIS - State funding and taxes were consistent themes in a forum for candidates for Morris City Council late Thursday, Oct. 11 at the American Legion.
MORRIS - For the last four months, representatives from the Morris Area and Cyrus school districts have been working on a potential plan to consolidate the districts. In a series of three stories this month, we'll look at what consolidation is and why the Morris Area and Cyrus school districts are considering it, what are the major considerations in consolidation discussions, and what the next steps will be in the consolidation process.
MORRIS - On Thursday, Morris community members gathered in East Side Park for an event to educate the public about domestic abuse and sexual assault during Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Speakers - which included UMM Violence Prevention Coordinator Bridget Joos, Morris Police Chief Jim Beauregard, County Attorney Aaron Jordan and Mayor Sheldon Giese - emphasized that domestic violence does happen in our community and that it is taken seriously.
MORRIS - Morris City Manager Blaine Hill presented the council with a draft of a major revision to the city's public improvement code, which he believes is necessary to reflect how public improvements are currently being made. In the proposal, the wording of the code will also be changed to reflect common language, including an update of terms and phrases to reflect the construction processes the city already uses. "I'm not asking for the City Council to take action to do an ordinance to update this code right now," said Hill.
MORRIS - Candidates for the Minnesota House and Senate have debated in two forums in Morris this month, the first at the University of Minnesota, Morris on Oct. 2 and the second at the American Legion on Oct. 11. Both forums featured Senate candidates John Schultz (DFL) and Torrey Westrom (R) for District 12 and House candidates Jay McNamar (DFL) and Scott Dutcher (R) in District 12A. Independence Party candidate for District 12A Dave Holman also attended the forum at the Legion.
MORRIS - On Wednesday, Oct. 10, several young Organic Valley farmers stopped at the University of Minnesota, Morris to hand out samples of milk and string cheese and talk about organic agriculture. The Generation Organic ("Gen-O") farmers have spent three weeks touring Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa in a bus powered by vegetable oil and biodiesel. Prior to their stop at UMM, the Gen-O farmers toured the organic dairy herd at the West Central Research and Outreach Center. The milk from the WCROC's organic dairy herd - about 2,000 pounds per day - is sold to Organic Valley.