MAY  2021
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Envisioning the Future  

As we begin to wrap up this fiscal year, we have a lot to be grateful for and many accomplishments to celebrate. In this space next month, I’ll share some exciting news and highlights of the year. 

Over the past few years, we have explored what is possible for Leadership Montana. We have deeply considered what leaders in Montana need. We are well positioned to expand based on what we have discovered and are excited for the years ahead. 

This summer, the Leadership Montana team will gather to envision the future and start our latest strategic plan. This process historically begins with you and your thoughts on how we move into the future. 

We invite you to share your ideas in this brief survey. Your experiences with Leadership Montana help us shape our programs and events. Your feedback is very important to us and helps drive our planning process.

Thank you for being a part of this process and for the many ways that you lead in Montana  

Be well and lead well,

Chantel M. Schieffer
President & CEO
Class of 2010, Masters 2019

CLICK here to share your opinion
CLICK here for Administrative Coordinator Application

Get your tickets today for Leadership Montana’s annual Celebrate Montana! Join us for an evening with fellow alumni and friends celebrating honored guests, the graduating 2021 Flagship class, and an opportunity to reconnect with your own classmates.

All registrations will be entered to win two tickets to your choice of one of two sold-out concerts in Missoula, ZZ TOP, or BRANDI CARLILE.

Join us to celebrate the recipients of our annual awards - Alumni Service Award, Alumni Leadership Award, and the Tom Scott Excellence in Leadership Award. 

You won’t want to miss the silent auction including exclusive items and experiences from all corners of Montana.

The special event is one of the highlights of the year as we gather to celebrate our participants, alumni, and the great state we call home. We hope you can join us this year virtually!

CLICK here to register


Jennifer Fritz, Great Falls, Calss of 2014
Interviewed by Alice Buckley, Bozeman, Class of 2018

Jennifer Fritz’s identity is tied to being a Montanan. It’s fitting because she exudes the very same qualities she loves about the people of Montana: kindness, integrity and deep appreciation for one’s surroundings and community. Jennifer has a way of making you feel like you’ve known her for years, perhaps because of her graciousness as she asks questions and her openness as she tells stories. In addition to the people of Montana, Jennifer loves the state’s big skies and fresh air; a perfect day is spent learning and laughing with her family and watching her two kiddos play and grow together.

Jennifer’s journey starts in Great Falls where she was born and raised. After high school, she headed west to Missoula, where she graduated from the University of Montana College of Business. Jennifer spent the next two years after college in Missoula where the community worked its way into her heart – Great Falls is home but she can’t shake her love for Missoula.

In 2007, Jennifer moved back to Great Falls where her husband (Jen’s high school sweetheart) had launched his career in life insurance before building a successful banking career. Jennifer spent the next five years working for the Holiday Inn in marketing, sales and catering before The Wendt Agency spotted her talent and hired her as an account manager. 2021 marks eleven years for Jennifer at the Wendt Agency, where she now leads The Wendt Agency’s client services as the Vice President of Client Relations. The nature of her role would not be surprising for anyone who meets Jennifer, she leads with kindness and an intent to listen and to connect. 

Jennifer started Leadership Montana in the fall of 2013, and announced she was pregnant with her first child at the Miles City session in February of 2014. That moment marked her favorite memory of Leadership Montana: Jennifer had shared the very first session she and her husband were hoping to grow their family by adopting a puppy, and to everyone’s surprise by January the “puppy” turned out to be a baby! A beautiful part of Jennifer’s story is the way her leadership journey and motherhood journey go hand in hand. Leadership Montana’s lessons of vulnerability, patience, slowing down and truly listening have been formative for her career at Wendt, but she talks as well of applying those skills to motherhood, an equally powerful form of leadership.

Jennifer sees the potential of Leadership Montana to continue to build a network of leaders passionate about the state and about strong leadership built on civility and kindness. The power of the program comes from a growing constellation of leaders striving to make our state a better place to live and work.

Active Alumni Membership Dues

Our annual Active Alumni Membership Dues Campaign launched in February. We are 81% towards our goal.  Can you help us meet or exceed our goal?

The Class of 2019 continues to hold the lead for the class competition, 75% of the Class of 2019 have paid their Active Alumni Dues! 

We are grateful to our Alumni that have renewed their commitment to building a better Montana. 

Class of 2021 - Your dues are current for 2021. We look forward to you joining the campaign in 2022. 

CLICK here to renew Active Alumni Membership
CLICK here for help with the Alumni Portal
Thank you to all Alumni that have paide their annual Alumni dues. This is thanks to those Alumni that have paid their 2021 Active Alumni Membership Dues between
April 28, 2021 -May 28, 2021. 


Alumni Dues and Pay It Forward
Toby O'Rourke 2017, M 2019

Alumni Dues Plus
Pete Johnson 2017
Carole Jones 2020
Llew Jones 2020

Alumni Dues
Nick Pancheau 2019
Lisa Koski 2019
Stephen Knudson 2016
Danielle Scharf 2019
DeeAnn Richardson 2018
Chris Fastnow 2010
Cari Yturri 2017

Alumni Dues
Noah Davis 2020
Melanie Schwarz 2006
Bridget Wilkinson 2019
Sunni Heikes-Knapton 2019
Jan Stoddard 2019
Nicole Divine 2014
D.J. Clark 2017
Amber Parish 2012
Nancy Schlepp 2017
Mary Jane McGarity 2007
Amy Hyfield 2017
Courtney Babcock 2020
Lenette Kosovich 2014, M 2020
Barb Cestero 2015, M 2020
“I want my entire team to experience Leadership Montana. Can we do that?” 
Yes, you can! 

In 2020, nearly 1,000 Montanans participated in a Leadership Montana training through their company or community. With three main workshops to offer, we can help you build a culture of leadership in your organization. 
CLICK here to learn more about workshops


Our gratitude this month goes out to The High Stakes Foundation. Supporting visionary people and organizations in Montana through grants and program-related investments, they fund transformational ideas that promote equality, climate change solutions, economic development, local agriculture, sustainable communities, ecosystem preservation, and leadership. We are honored to have their support and are thankful for our continued partnership.

If you are interested in learning about sponsorship partnerships with Leadership Montana, let us know.

EVENTS - Opportunities to Listen, Learn and Build Connection

June 15 6:00 PM Celebrate Montana. Our annual gala celebration will be held virtually again this year. Save the date to join with alumni, graduating class members, sponsors, and friends as we come together to celebrate all that is great about our state and organization. 

September 23-24, 2021The Confluence, White Sulphur Springs.  Alumni that are current on 2021 Dues will have early opportunity to register June 2-9. General registration will open June 9. We expect this event with a max attendance of 50 to sell out quick. 

December 1-2, 2021. Men's and Women's Leadership Forums.  Alumni that are current on 2021 Dues will have early opportunity to register at a discount rate on June 2-9. General registration opens June 9. 

March 14-15, 2022, The Confluence, Red Lodge. Alumni that are current on 2021 Dues will have early opportunity to register June 2-9. General registration will open June 9. We expect this event with a max attendance of 50 to sell out quick. 

Copyright © 2021 Leadership Montana, All rights reserved.

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Leadership Montana is a non-profit collaboration of leaders from business, labor, healthcare, higher education, non-profits and government coming together to form a strong partnership for the betterment of Montana.

Leadership Montana exists to develop leaders committed to building a better Montana through knowledge, collaboration and civility.