Roosevelt organizations challenged to "dream bigger"

On Tuesday, February 20, the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation (TRPLF) hosted a subcommittee meeting at the Rough Riders Hotel in Medora, bringing together local and national organizations whose missions are inspired by Theodore Roosevelt.

Throughout the day, guests engaged in thoughtful discussion and sparked conversation about the future of the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum in western North Dakota.

Former North Dakota Governor Ed Schafer welcomed the participants. Reflecting upon Theodore Roosevelt’s accomplishments and work ethic, he said, “That life of charging up the hill and making a difference for all continues to be important in today’s times. Let’s get to know that life.” His address ignited a sense of pride and unity throughout the room, a great transition into the keynote address by North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.

Governor Burgum’s speech was uplifting and inspiring. He encouraged all involved to think wider and collaborate together, saying, “I invite you to dream bigger. I challenge all of you to break down whatever it takes — to break through to something more meaningful and more important than you’re thinking now.”

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After his keynote address, an open discussion with the Governor and Theodore Roosevelt Humanities Scholar Clay Jenkinson allowed guests to express their aspirations for advancing the legacy of Theodore Roosevelt. Those who participated in this Q&A included Scott Davis of the North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission and Theodore Roosevelt V, among others.

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When Theodore Roosevelt V spoke, he addressed what this project means, saying, “You are on the cusp of creating something meaningful. Theodore Roosevelt’s legacy reminds us of the importance of being an American citizen in the broadest sense, and that’s increasingly important work.”

Overall, this meeting proved just how many national and local associations have positive interests in the future of the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum. The event inspired all involved to think about the larger impact of the library and museum. As Ed Schafer concluded in his opening remarks, “We are all here to advance the actions and direction of Theodore Roosevelt to the rest of the world.”