BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Doug Burgum today appointed entrepreneur Kevin Black of Minot and reappointed business consultant Danita Bye of Stanley to the North Dakota Board of Higher Education.
Black co-founded Creedence Energy Services, a business creating specialized chemical solutions to enhance performance and production of oil and gas wells, in 2014. He previously worked in account management and sales for Baker Hughes in Minot and Champion Technologies in Williston.
Black earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and management from North Dakota State University. He currently serves as vice chair of the Minot Area Chamber EDC and as a board member for the North Dakota Economic Development Foundation and the North Dakota Petroleum Council. He also serves on the North Dakota University Development Foundation Board of Trustees and the University of North Dakota Petroleum Engineering Industry Advisory Council.
“As a business leader, Kevin is well-suited to drive efficiency, strategy and innovation within our university system,” Burgum said. “His experience serving on various boards at three of our 11 university campuses and on the North Dakota Development Foundation will bring a unique and strong perspective on how to transform higher education. We’re deeply grateful to Kevin and all of the candidates who demonstrated their passion for higher education in North Dakota.”
Bye, who was originally appointed to the board in 2020, has been a leadership and sales development consultant since 1997 for small- to medium-sized businesses in the science, technology, engineering, manufacturing and medical device industries. She previously worked as an investor and sales manager for Micro-Tech, a medical device manufacturer, and in sales and sales management for Xerox Corp.
Bye earned bachelor’s degrees in biology and psychology from the University of Sioux Falls (S.D.) and a master’s degree in transformational leadership from Bethel University in St. Paul, Minn. She also currently serves on the board of directors for the North Dakota Petroleum Council and The Triple T Inc., an oil and gas company. She previously served on the North Dakota Economic Development Foundation board, the Innovate ND board and the University of Sioux Falls Board of Trustees.
“We appreciate Danita’s service on the board these past two years and look forward to her continuing to drive positive change for higher education in North Dakota during a full four-year term,” Burgum said.
Black is being appointed to the seat previously held by Jill Louters, who resigned last month after accepting a position with the North Dakota State University Extension Service. Both Bye’s and Black’s terms run until June 30, 2026, and are subject to confirmation by the North Dakota Senate. Burgum expressed his gratitude for Louters’ service on the board.
The Board of Higher Education has eight voting members appointed by the governor, including one student member, and two non-voting members who represent the North Dakota University System’s faculty and staff. The board oversees the system’s 11 public colleges and universities.