Ponikvar was influential voice on Iron Range

Veda Ponikvar and Jim Oberstar
On her 92nd birthday, Veda Ponikvar, left, received a birthday cake from former U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar and then-Congressional candidate Rick Nolan (not pictured).
Dan Kraker | MPR News 2012

A woman named one of the state's 150 most important people by the Minnesota Historical Society has died.

Veda Ponikvar, a newspaper publisher, editor and writer in Chisholm for 50 years, passed away Tuesday at the age of 96.

She founded the Chisholm Free Press in 1947.

Over the years she helped inform and shape public opinion on important Iron Range issues like mining, labor rights and preservation of the wilderness.

MPR's Cathy Wurzer spoke with Wanda Moeller, who got to know Ponikvar when Moeller was publisher of the Hibbing Daily Tribune and the Chisholm Herald.

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