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Get to know your Rugby Public School board

By Staff | Sep 9, 2016


The Rugby School Board consists of seven members Superintendent Mike McNeff, five district members and the business manager.

The five district members include Kristi Blessum (President), Carlie Johnson (Vice President), Dustin Hager, Shane Livedalen, and Brenda Heilman. The business manager is Dawn Hauck.

The purpose of the school board is to govern the school district, including such items as adopting policies and monitoring the budget.

Regular meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month, at 7 am.

Member bios



Shane Livedalen grew up in Towner, ND and attended Towner High School when it was the home of the Cardinals.

He currently works at Rugby Homes & RV Center.

In his spare time, Livedalen enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing and camping.

Livedalen joined the school board so that he can have an active role in the school that his children are attending and can learn more about what it takes to keep a school operating.



Brenda Heilman grew up on a ranch located northwest of Towner. As the daughter of a rancher and a schoolteacher, she learned early on the importance of education and work ethic. Heilman enjoyed her college years at NDSU, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science.

Heilman works full-time for the State of North Dakota as the E-leaning Coordinator for the Department of Human Services (DHS), where she manages the Learning Management System, builds online training modules, assists other DHS units with online training, and provides consultant services to divisions looking at online training.

Because Heilman works from home, she also helps to operate the family farm/ranch located south of Rugby, raising beef cattle, wheat, barley, peas, soybeans, hay, corn, and her children. She has been married to her husband, Kevin, for 20 years and together they have three children, Kaycee, Allison and Cade.

Heilman has served on the Little Flower Church Council and coached the 4-H Hippology team. In addition to the RHS School Board, she currently serves on Pierce County’s Farm Service Agency County Committee.

Heilman, a lover of adventures, enjoys reading, horseback riding, and Rugby Panther sports. She is a Kansas City Chiefs fan.


Kristi Blessum, School Board President, is in her third year on the board.

She attended the University of North Dakota and graduated with a degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education.

Blessum and her husband, Jim, farm and ranch southeast of Rugby. Together, they have four children: Elizabeth, a sophomore at NDSU; Jacob, a senior at RHS; Maria, a sophomore at RHS; and Sarah, an eighth grader at Rugby Junior High.

In her spare time, Blessum likes to spend time with her family and participate in her children’s activities.

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