I believe that we are stewards of all that we’ve inherited, and that it is our obligation to give back to our communities through public service, in pursuit of the common good. My commitment is to work hard and embody the values that make Missoula County great. My main priorities and core values boil down to five main areas:


From working as a wildland fire incident commander for the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service to serving as a supervisor, project manager, and business partner in the private sector, I know what it takes to set a vision and get the job done. I also know from my eight years on the Missoula City Council what it takes to balance competing interests and diverse viewpoints to pass legislation. As commissioner, I will:

  • Adopt an open-door policy with staff and the public
  • Collaborate with elected officials and the public to set a clear vision for Missoula County and then implement that vision
  • Nurture a sense of respect and teamwork, even when sharp differences of opinion occur

As a lifelong hunter, fisherman, and conservationist, I know the importance of wildlife, wild places, healthy habitat, public lands, pure water, clean air, and food security. We can and must be good stewards of Missoula County for current and future generations. This is an ethic that I held while chairing the City of Missoula’s Parks and Conservation Committee and it will be my goal as commissioner. As commissioner, I will:

  • Acknowledge the reality of climate change as one of the greatest moral challenges of our time, and work to make Missoula County carbon neutral through energy conservation, smart development, and sustainable transportation
  • Ensure adequate environmental review of projects that may affect our air, water, and sensitive ecosystems
  • Keep public lands public, and fight against any efforts to privatize public lands in Missoula County

Whether you live in Condon, Lolo, the Ninemile, or in the heart of Missoula, we all live in Missoula County and we must bridge the urban-rural divide that too often dominates land-use and economic development rhetoric. I’m a strong believer in the value of neighborhood plans, something that was affirmed by the Montana Supreme Court when they overturned a Rattlesnake Valley subdivision proposal that I, too, felt violated the spirit of the local neighborhood plan. As commissioner, I will:

  • Ensure adequate public involvement and respect for neighborhood plans and historic resources
  • Promote our agricultural heritage and protect our finite and precious prime agricultural soils
  • Improve infrastructure, ranging from broadband to streets and roads. I’ll also continue my advocacy for the return of passenger rail service through southern Montana.

I served as the chair of the Missoula City Council’s Public Safety and Health Committee for four years, during which time I championed initiatives such as cracking down on DUI and distracted driving, investigating health impacts from freight rail operations in Missoula, reducing speed limits, and providing our emergency responders with the resources they need to protect our community. As someone who has served as a firefighter and EMT, I will bring a fresh, and valuable perspective to the commission. As commissioner I will:

  • Address jail overcrowding through supporting and implementing a jail diversion program and working with community partners to provide adequate mental health and drug treatment facilities and services
  • Work with the Sheriff’s and County Attorney’s offices to address the flow of meth & heroin into our community
  • Promote public safety and sound land-use planning in the wildland-urban interface

I believe the role of elected officials is to look out for the most vulnerable in our society and promote the common good. On the Missoula City Council, I was a champion for LGBT equality and during my 2012 congressional campaign spoke out publicly for marriage equality. I initiated efforts to establish government-to-government dialogue between the city of Missoula and the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes (CSKT), and believe that environmental justice and social justice go hand-in-hand. I will also be an advocate for cultural enrichment. As commissioner, I will:

  • Strengthen collaboration with the CSKT
  • Promote equal pay for equal work
  • Establish a 1% percent for public art program
  • Coordinate with the City of Missoula and other partners to promote dignified, adequate housing for all