Nagel returns to Minot as Amtrak station agent

A Minot native has returned to the city as the Amtrak station agent.

Paul Nagel began as station agent in Minot in mid-March. He replaced Doneta Skinn, who retired March 1.

“This is actually about the third career for me,” said Nagel. He’s been with Amtrak for slightly more than two years.

His first career was in law enforcement, starting with the Ward County Sheriff’s Department. He then became a federal agent. He completed his career of just under 30 years in law enforcement with a large police department in a management position in Washington state.

He then worked in contract administration for a major defense contractor for about four years.

After that he went to work for Amtrak, starting in Seattle, then to Whitefish, Mont., and now to Minot.

A graduate of Minot High School and Minot State University, his mother, Ann Hunsaid, a retired teacher, resides in Minot.

Some of Nagel’s family members also were employed by railroads his maternal grandfather worked for Great Northern Railway in Minot and an uncle worked for the Soo Line Railway here.

The newly renovated Minot Amtrak Depot was one of the incentives for his return to Minot.

“That and working with Andy Maragos,” he said. “Our families have known each other for many generations here in Minot. Maragos also is with the Minot Amtrak station.

“I actually went through here as a child and saw what the original station looked like,” Nagel said.

A major renovation of the existing Minot Amtrak Depot was completed prior to the 2011 Souris River flood that extensively damaged the building. For many months the baggage room served as a temporary waiting room and ticket office until last month when the depot’s main waiting room and ticket office resumed operation.

Amtrak has spent upwards of $500,000 putting the station back to the same building it was before the flood. R&K Contractors Inc. in Minot is the general contractor for the project, the same contractor that did the restoration project before the flood.

Nagel and his wife, the former Deanna Borgers of Minot, are now residing in Minot. “She’s thrilled to be back home too,” he said.

He said two stepsons live in Bismarck and Minneapolis. Matthew Kro is employed by the State Motor Pool in Bismarck, and Nathan Kro lives in Minneapolis where he is computer/electrical engineer.

In making the plans for the National Train Day open house at the Amtrak passenger station Saturday and for other days for passengers and other visitors to the station, Nagel said, “I really would like to promote North Dakota.”

He said that hopefully he’ll have more displays and brochures promoting North Dakota available in the main waiting room. “I can’t stress that enough. I really think we need to get people aware North Dakota is somewhere you can come for vacations.” He said there’s many places people can visit and explore all across the state.