BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Doug Burgum will present the North Dakota Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award to former U.S. Secret Service agent and author Clint Hill on Monday, Nov. 19, in Washburn, N.D., where Hill grew up and graduated from high school.
Burgum announced Hill as the 44th recipient of the Rough Rider Award, the state’s highest commendation for its citizens, on Oct. 5.
The governor will present the award to Hill during a public ceremony at 1 p.m. Monday at the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center at 2576 8th St. S.W. in Washburn, at the intersection of U.S. 83 and State Highway 200A. A reception will follow.
The ceremony is free and open to the public and media, and it will be livestreamed on the governor’s Facebook page. No RSVP is required.
In addition to Burgum and Hill, speakers during the ceremony will include:
- North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, who was among several people who nominated Hill for the Rough Rider Award.
- Lisa McCubbin, co-author of Hill’s three books detailing his experiences as a Secret Service agent.
- Joe Scargill, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Secret Service’s Minneapolis Field Office.
North Dakota Secretary of State Al Jaeger and State Historical Society Director Claudia Berg, both of whom concurred with Burgum’s selection of Hill for the Rough Rider Award, will assist in unveiling the official portrait of Hill. The portrait was painted by Minot-based artist Vern Skaug, who since 1970 has painted many of the portraits hanging in the Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Hall of Fame at the North Dakota Capitol.
Hill was born in Larimore and grew up in Washburn. He served in the U.S. Secret Service from 1958 to 1975, protecting the presidency through five administrations: President Dwight D. Eisenhower, President John F. Kennedy, President Lyndon B. Johnson, President Richard M. Nixon and President Gerald R. Ford. He was in the motorcade as a member of the First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy’s detail on the day President Kennedy was assassinated. Hill ran from his position on the running board of the Secret Service follow-up car and leapt onto the back of the presidential limousine as shots were being fired, shielding President Kennedy and the First Lady from any further shots.
Hill retired from the Secret Service in 1975 as Assistant Director responsible for all protective forces and continues to participate with Secret Service personnel in discussing protective activities and procedures.
The Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award recognizes present and former North Dakotans who have been influenced by the state in achieving national recognition in their fields of endeavor, thereby reflecting credit and honor upon North Dakota and its citizens.