Parents and Family News: Published by the Parent and Family Association

  Resource Education and Agriculture Leadership
July 2017

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Introducing REAL Montana Class III!

Twenty current and emerging leaders from Montana’s natural resource industries have been competitively selected to take part in Class III of REAL Montana (Resource Education and Agriculture Leadership).  Class III will begin their leadership journey on September 7, 2017 at their first seminar in Bozeman.

“REAL Montana continues to strengthen its mission of building a network of informed and engaged leaders to advance the natural resource industries in Montana.  The individuals selected for Class III are a diverse group of leaders who will offer a variety of perspectives and experiences. We look forward to the next two years," says Howard Skjervem, chairman of the REAL Montana Advisory Board and Class I graduate.

Class III participants are:

  • Jack Alexander, Belgrade: Range Management Consultant and President of Synergy Resource Solutions
  • Bradley Cook, Helena: Certified Public Accountant, Partner, and Agriculture Practice Leader at Wipfli, LLP
  • Bonita Cremer, Melville: Owner of Sweet Grass Land & Cattle, LLC
  • Shawn Erickson, Hobson: Retail Account Manager with DuPont Crop Protection
  • Kimberly Gibbs, Miles City: Agriculture Instructor at Miles Community College
  • Lynda Grande, Columbus: Vice President of Grande Ranch Company
  • Karen Helfrich, Butte: Environmental Engineer with Pioneer Technical Services
  • Kevin Kanduch, Philipsburg: Logger at Kanduch Logging, Inc.
  • Ben Lehfeldt, Lavina: Rancher and Partner in Lehfeldt Rambouillets
  • Andy Lundquist, Dillon: Branch Manager for Northwest Farm Credit Services
  • Bridger Mahlum, Helena: Government Relations Director with the Montana Chamber of Commerce
  • Rose Malisani, Cascade: Agriculture Extension Agent with MSU Extension
  • Sarah Norcott, Helena: Corporate Counsel for NorthWestern Energy
  • Lexi Palagi, Great Falls: Marketing Representative for Calumet Montana Refining
  • Christian Rohloff, Great Falls: Regional Precision Agriculture Manager for CHS
  • Lori Shaw, Colstrip: Co-founder and Director of Colstrip United
  • Jillien Streit, Chester: CFO and Owner of Stricks Ag
  • Brian Thompson, Helena: Associate Attorney with Browning, Kaleczyc, Berry and Hoven, PC
  • Jeff Welborn, Dillon: Owner of Stock Drive Trailer Sales and State Legislator
  • Alysha Wilson, Ringling: Office Manager at Tintina Resources

Photo courtesy of Class I graduate Whitney Klasna

REAL Montana welcomes 3 new board members and elects new board chair

We are excited to announce the addition of three new members to our advisory board team: Mike Honeycutt, Bryan Lorengo, and Molly Schwend. Additionally, Class I graduate Howard Skjervem was recently elected board chair. The REAL Montana Advisory Board consists of 12 industry leaders from across the state who donate countless hours to ensure REAL Montana is a success. CLICK HERE to meet our full 2017 Advisory Board.


REAL Montana Sponsors

REAL Montana is made possible through the generous support of a broad group of public and private entities. CLICK HERE for a complete list of program sponsors. For information on becoming a sponsor of REAL Montana, please contact the Program Director.





We are excited to introduce Class III!  These twenty participants were selected from a pool of highly qualified candidates.  Thank you to everyone who submitted applications or nominated candidates.  REAL Montana continues to grow stronger with each class and we are truly looking forward to working with this new cohort!
- Janelle Booth
Director, REAL Montana

Seminar 1: Ethical Leadership and Montana's Growing Economy: September 7-9 in Bozeman

Seminar 2: Media and Communications: November 2-4 in Billings

Seminar 3: Coal and Culture: January 18-20, 2018 in Colstrip/Hardin


REAL Montana
Janelle Booth, Program Director
Tara Becken, Program Coordinator

MSU Extension
Culbertson Hall
PO Box 170535
Bozeman, MT 59717-0535

Tel: (406) 994-6480
Fax: (406) 994-1905