18. Burleigh County, ND
Best Places Job Growth Bismarck ND
Towns include: Bismarck
Job growth (2000-2011): 22.9%

North Dakota has struck black gold, and Burleigh County is feeling the trickle-down effect. While it isn't one of the state's oil patch counties, the discovery of the gushing Bakken Shale to the west has it riding on a rush that's turned the area into Boomtown, USA. With an unemployment rate of 3.5% for 2011, Burleigh County boasts the lowest unemployment rate on our list.

A reputation for dependable workers draws businesses to the county, and easy access to transportation links goes over well with companies with goods to move. Burlington Northern Santa Fe's freight rail network serves the area, and Interstate 94, a major east-west artery, runs through the county.

Look for opportunities in Bismarck, which serves as a retail and health care hub. Aetna is a key employer, and two major hospitals, Medcenter One Health Systems and St. Alexius Medical Center, are located here.

  @Money - Last updated August 20 2012 08:49 AM ET
Join the Conversation
Full list: Top 100

These terrific small cities offer strong job opportunities, great schools, low crime, quality health care, and a true sense of community.

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.