Rugby High School Class of 1994 member Christina Lindseth received recognition recently from Fargo Inc! Magazine for her impact on business culture.
The latest news about Lindseth likely didn’t surprise her friends and former classmates; she’s been making an impact on her surroundings for a long time, according to her mom, Bonita.
Lindseth, who goes by the name Tina, first made news in Rugby April 20, 1977, at the age of one.
A story by Publisher Frank Hornstein told how Dave and Bonita Lindseth contacted Lutheran Social Services, expressing their desire to adopt, which led to correspondence with an orphanage in Bogota, Colombia. Staff at the orphanage sent photos of a baby girl and the Lindseths made preparations to take her home.
The baby died.
“I carried her picture for six months,” Bonita Lindseth said. “It was like being pregnant. She was Colombian as well. She died before we could get down there.”
“Tina was the second child we considered,” Bonita added. “Tina was strong.”
Strength was necessary for infants to survive their impoverished circumstances in third world nations such as Colombia, Bonita said.
“They give infants a lot of brown sugar water there because that’s what they can afford to feed them,” Bonita said, noting since many families can’t afford baby formula, they scrimp on infant nutrition.
With a smile, Bonita added, “(Tina) turned out to be our strongest child and our most athletic. She was the most interested in athleticism, too. She still plays soccer and sometimes she plays volleyball too. She plays soccer with a co-ed league. She’s always loved that.”
“Even right away, the first time we got her, she was spunky,” Bonita said of Tina. “She was very outgoing. She would go to anybody. She liked a lot of attention as a little kid and she still does now.”
“She still does because she goes around and gives speeches a lot. She wouldn’t be on my speech team, though,” Bonita, who taught at Rugby High for many years, added.
“Neither would my other daughter, and she’s going to give the commencement address in Jamestown to the graduate students. She wouldn’t be on my speech team, either,” Bonita added with a laugh. “My son did and he did well.”
“Calina Krogen is my other daughter,” Bonita said. “I have three children.”
The Lindseths’ oldest, their biological son Christopher, “was state chess champion and there’s a big article in the Tribune about him, too,” Bonita said.
“Tina was a good athlete,” Bonita said of Tina’s time at Rugby High. “She liked soccer and she still plays soccer. She played hockey. She also played basketball and did track. She did shot put and discus. Now, her daughter is doing discus.”
Tina also participated in a statewide high school business conference, her mom said.
She attended Concordia College after graduating from RHS.
“She did well and she did well at Concordia,” Bonita Lindseth said of Tina. “She majored in biology. She trains people and she has 20 people under her. She’s a manager at Cognizant Technologies.”
Lindseth’s journey from a distant land as a child turned into one of self-discovery in her adult years, Bonita said.
Fargo Inc! chose Lindseth for her work to advocate for LGBTQ rights and visibility in workplaces, according to their profile of her.
“Tina has two daughters,” Bonita said, showing photos of two smiling girls on her smart phone. “This one’s Rayme and this is Ellie. “
“Tina was the head of gay rights organizations in Fargo,” Bonita said of her daughter. Lindseth now brings awareness of LGBTQ inclusion to the corporate world, but still volunteers for civil rights issues and other causes through The United Way.
“She also volunteers for Habitat for Humanity,” Bonita added.
In the Fargo Inc! article about her work, Lindseth said:
“I am a first-generation Colombian-born American citizen adopted into my Norwegian/Irish farming family of central North Dakota. When I was growing up, everyone worked hard to the benefit of the family and the farm. When we gathered, it was always around a table of food,” Lindseth said. “This is how we connected.”
“Additionally, when I came out, my family supported me, along with my friends and also my workplace. This allowed me to thrive through that time in my life and take many lessons and grow from the, versus face challenges and be filled with resentment,” Lindseth added.
Lindseth went on in the article to describe how she enjoyed “connecting with those I work with and I make it a priority to get to know who they really are – ideally spending time with them gathering for a meal/food! I have found that the more you know your teammates, the better you understand everyone’s strengths and you can empower them to thrive.”
Bonita Lindseth said Tina’s success through making and maintaining connections doesn’t surprise her.
“She’s always been outgoing,” Bonita Lindseth said with a smile. “She’s a very busy and well-rounded person.”