Bishop Ryan sees addition


Staff Writer

Bishop Ryan Catholic School held a groundbreaking on Friday for a new 8,500-square-foot addition at the school.

When the weather allows, construction will begin on the $3.6 million addition, which will add six new classrooms to the elementary wing for preschool through first grade. Other renovation work will include the addition of a new middle school science lab, an upgrade for the high school science lab and upgrading and adding on to the school library. Remodeling projects will total 6,026 square feet, according to a press release issued by Jaimie Brunner, director of marketing.

Project funding comes from the Growing Our Faith, Our Family, Our Future capital campaign led by co-chairs and Bishop Ryan Alumni Jon Backes and Bruce Kramer. Mike Fitzmaurice chairs the major gifts committee. Honorary chairs are Orlin and Millie Backes, Mike and Bonnie Brunner, Patrick and Sandy Butz, Grace Fisher, Dick Feist, Mike and Kathy Gaddie, Colleen Johnson, Pat and Mary Kay Jones, Ken and Dee Jundt, Chuck and Nancy Kramer, Maynard Sandberg, and Don and Bertha Wald. National Alumni Chairs are U.S. Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D. and his wife, Mikey, and Gen. (Ret.) Charles and Marilyn Wald.

More than $4.3 million has been raised for construction and for a permanent endowment that will be used to improve faculty salaries. Jon Backes said the capital campaign must continue so that the Catholic school system’s fine teachers can be compensated as they deserve to be.

The elementary grades moved in ahead of schedule after the 2011 flood heavily damaged Little Flower Catholic School. Children in the elementary grades moved to the Bishop Ryan campus that fall. Voiles said classroom space has been at a premium.

Bismarck Diocese Bishop David Kagan blessed the construction site and joined Minot priests and capital campaign chairs in breaking turf with ceremonial shovels in the school parking lot.

This is the first Catholic school groundbreaking in the diocese in more than a decade, according to Brunner.

The general contractor for the project is Hight Construction of Minot and the architect is Anderson Wade and Whitty, PC. Larger subcontractors include C&C Plumbing and Heating, mechanical, and Electric Service Company, electrical. Dean Feist, assisted by his brother Danny Feist, is the project’s owner representative.