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Meet our Staff and Board of Directors

Our staff consists of three full-time staff members and two part-time staff members, and our Board of Directors is currently led by 13 dedicated and passionate volunteers who give their time and talents to help our organization run effectively and efficiently. We love our team, and hope you do too.

 

Staff

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Kevin Sylvester
Executive Director
ksylvester@familypromisegv.org 

Originally from New England, Kevin is most recently of Billings, MT, where he worked as the Regional Program Manager for the Montana Conservation Corps. He has experience with marketing, public outreach, and non-profit organizations, three areas that will serve him well in his new role.

Kevin graduated with a BS in Business Administration from the University of Connecticut (Go Huskies!) and has worked as a youth leader in various outdoor programs throughout the northeast and west. He has been actively engaged in volunteer work ranging from Boy Scouts to helping with the Family Promise (Interfaith Hospitality Network) in Billings.

 

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Christine Armstrong
Volunteer & Outreach Manager
carmstrong@familypromisegv.org
A Montana native, Christine grew up in the Magic City, and moved to Bozeman in 2007 to pursue an education at Montana State University and seize Bozeman’s access to outdoor recreation. Christine earned a B.S. in Community Health from MSU and is also a Certified Health Education Specialist.Christine’s introduction to Bozeman’s non-profit community was through the Montana Conservation Corps, where she worked as an Administrative Assistant providing program and fundraising support. She then continued on to the Gallatin City-County Health Department, where she served as an AmeriCorps VISTA, leading projects aimed at improving health and community outreach. Christine’s next adventure was as a Preventive Health Strategist at TwoMedicine Health providing on-site health education, account management, and activity-planning. She continued on to the HRDC as a Services Navigator, helping connect low-income families and individuals with services and resources in the Gallatin Valley. Christine came to Family Promise of Gallatin Valley is June of 2015.
 
When the snow melts and the roads thaw, Christine can be found relishing Montana’s gorgeous views, and hitting the pavement to explore her home state. She also enjoys supporting her local non-profits through volunteering and attending community events, and taking in Bozeman’s thriving downtown culture and local farmer’s markets.

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Kara Meier
Family Case Manager
kmeier@familypromisegv.org

Kara Meier has lived in Bozeman since 2000 and brings to the job over 15 years experience in mental health, developmental disabilities, and most recently, nonprofit work with adult felons. Her exhaustive knowledge of community resources combined with her sharp wit and passion for advocacy make her a natural for the job. Kara has volunteered with Habitat for Humanity, the Help Center, and Big Sky Youth Empowerment, and loves anything to do with the outdoors. She is a graduate of MSU and the proud mom to 5-year old Stella who just happens to be the bee’s knees. Stop by to say hello or send her an email at kmeier@familypromisegv.org.

Debbie & Larry King
Sunday Coordinators

Larry and Debbie King are active members of the Mount Ellis Seventh Day Adventist Church. Larry is a native of Bozeman and Debbie is from Massachusetts. They have been married 28 years and have three children, all in college. Larry is a certified nurse’s aid and bus driver. Debbie is a registered nurse, but much prefers her home-based career in medical transcription. Since they have been volunteering through their church for all of their lives, Family Promise was a natural place for them to become involved.

Shelly Frye
Saturday Coordinator

 

Board of Directors

 

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Lisa Price, Community Volunteer
Board President

Lisa was born and raised in Colorado, giving her a great love and respect for the outdoors. She graduated from Texas Woman’s University with a degree in Criminal Justice, and has lived all over the country enjoying the many diverse cultures. Lisa retired in 2010 as a lieutenant with the Kent Police Department in Washington State after 26 years in law enforcement. While in Washington, Lisa was an active member of Rotary and served on the board of the African American Cultural Center.

Lisa joined the Family Promise board in 2011 and is also active with Bozeman Business and Professional Women, along with several social groups. She and her husband, Ron, enjoy all the activities and opportunities Bozeman and Montana have to offer. This includes biking, hiking, snowshoeing, skiing and playing with their beautiful Springer Spaniel, Jeffie.

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Jon Ayers, Bank President
Board Vice President

With over sixteen years of experience in all aspects of community banking, Jon relocated to Big Sky from Wyoming in 2008 to join First Security Bank, and during the summer 2010, transitioned to Bozeman. He is currently the Branch President for the Cottonwood First Security Bank location.  He is currently the Chair of the Big Sky Community Corporation, active with the Bozeman Sunrise Rotary Club, and past Treasurer/President Elect Nominee for the Rotary Club of Big Sky. Other community with which he has worked include the Cheyenne-Laramie County Regional Planning Commission, United Way, Junior Achievement, Ducks Unlimited, March of Dimes and the Chamber of Commerce.  Jon received his BS in Finance from the University of Wyoming in 1997, a Commercial Lending Degree in 2000, and an Advanced Banking Degree from the Pacific Coast School of Banking in 2005.

Betsy Crabs, Community Volunteer
Board Secretary

Betsy Crabs moved to Bozeman in 1984 from Denver, CO.  She began her career as a teacher in Oklahoma City, OK, and later earned an educational specialist degree in library media from the University of Colorado.  She and her husband purchased Charlie’s restaurant on Main Street in Bozeman in 1985.  They later co-managed a private fly fishing club in Island Park, Idaho.  Active in her church, First Presbyterian, she is the elder in charge of Mission and Outreach.  She has also served as the Family Promise Volunteer Coordinator for her church and joins the Board as Secretary.

becky colorBecky Turner, Certified Public Accountant
Board Treasurer

Becky is a native Montanan, having grown up on a ranch outside Helena.  She moved to Bozeman to attend Montana State University, and graduated in 2005 with Bachelor’s degree in Business Finance and then again in 2008 with Masters of Professional Accountancy.  She maintains a Certified Public Accountant license within the State of Montana and recently completed the Pacific Coast Banking School program.  Becky has been with Glacier Bancorp, Inc. for the past 8 years and is the Internal Auditor for their Bozeman division, Big Sky Western Bank.  She is active in Four Corners Toastmasters, Gallatin Valley Pheasants Forever, and the MT Society of CPAs.  Becky, along with her husband of 5 years, enjoys anything outdoors skiing, hiking, camping, gardening and spending time with their Springer Spaniel puppies.

 
kim colorKim Dickerson, Community Volunteer
Member at Large

Kim Dickerson is a relative newcomer to Montana.  With her husband, Logan and their two children Avery and Mason, Kim arrived in June 2013 from Charlotte, North Carolina, and are thoroughly enjoying all of the outdoor fun that the Big Sky state has to offer. In Charlotte, Kim was a volunteer, Board Member, and eventually an employee for Freedom School Partners, an independent  non-profit that provides quality summer Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools® programs for students in grades K-8 throughout Charlotte’s low-income neighborhoods. Through her work with Freedom School Partners she learned to work in partnership with corporations, faith-based institutes and dedicated volunteers. During Kim’s tenure with the organization it grew from serving 300 students to 1600. Kim is a passionate advocate for disadvantaged children and their families. She attended the University of Colorado in Boulder and graduate school at Queens University in Charlotte. 

 mary colorMary McMakin, Community Volunteer
Member at Large

Mary McMakin is a retired executive with Great Harvest Franchising and is an active volunteer in the public schools and First Presbyterian Church.  She is a former Peace Corps Volunteer in Gabon and a graduate of Emory University. She and her husband Tom live in Bozeman with their two children.

 
 
 
 
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James Powell, Vice President at Wells Fargo Bank
Member at Large

Jim serves as the Vice President of Wells Fargo Bank in Bozeman.   Over the course of his 30 years in banking, 27 of those years have been with Wells Fargo Bank in both the Billings and Bozeman markets.  Since moving back to Bozeman in 2004, Jim has been involved with, and part of the leadership team for a variety of community service groups and organizations such as The Exchange Club of Bozeman, Greater Gallatin United Way, and Prospera Business Network.  Jim grew up in eastern Montana and graduated from Montana State University Bozeman in 1983 in Finance.   He has a wife Nancy who works at Montana State University and has two children.

 
 
bob colorBob Schwahn, Pastor of Missional Mobilization at Journey Church
Member at Large

Bob has been involved in Christian ministry in the Gallatin Valley since the mid 1990’s.  He graduated from Montana State in Electrical Engineering in 1993 and has received an M.A. in Biblical and Theological Studies from Western Seminary in Portland, OR.  After graduation from MSU he joined the staff of CRU, an interdenominational Christian organization that works with students on the college campus.  He led and worked with CRU for nearly 20 years at the University of Montana and Montana State University.  Two years ago Bob took a position as one of the pastors at Journey Church in Bozeman.  He is married to his wife Carmen and has 3 children – Jadon, Josiah, and Abigail.

 

wendy colorWendy Wigert, Director of Operations at Montana Conservation Corps
Member at Large

Wendy Wigert has worked as the Director of Operations with Montana Conservation Cops since December 1995.   Wendy and her husband Sven have two children — Svea born in 2000 and Jack in 2002.

Wendy graduated from Wittenberg University in Springfield Ohio with a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting and Computer Science.  She worked with Ernst and Whinney for 3 years obtaining her Certificate of Public Accounting before specializing in non profit management. Wendy’s passion has always been with organizations focusing on empowering youth, community building, and fighting poverty. Wendy is currently a board member with The Corps Network and the Montana Girls STEM Collaborative Project. Wendy previously served with Greater Gallatin United Way, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Leadership Bozeman, Child Care Connections, and the Bozeman Youth Initiative.

morgan colorMorgan Darlington, Director of Scheduling, Greg for Montana campaign
Member at Large
 
Morgan’s roots can be traced back to the family farm and ranch southeast of Big Sandy, Montana where she was raised. She is a proud graduate of Montana State University. While obtaining her bachelor’s degree in Community Health at MSU, Morgan worked as an intern at Family Promise of Gallatin Valley. The internship led to a one year, full time position with Family Promise as the on-site AmeriCorps VISTA.Morgan continues to pursue a career in public service; she previously worked for the Office of Congressman Steve Daines in the United States House of Representatives before going on to join Senator Daines in the United States Senate.Morgan is active in her local church and is a member of Bozeman Rotaract. In her spare time, she enjoys the company of family and friends while embarking on all typical Montana adventures-running, peak bagging, branding, and brewing coffee over a campfire are a few of the favorites.
 
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Kevin Thane
Member at Large
Kevin Thane has been active as a Family Promise volunteer since 2011. A long time resident of Bozeman, Kevin currently serves on the Sweet Pea Board of Directors, the Greater Gallatin Homeless Action Coalition, and is vice-chair of the City of Bozeman Affordable Housing Advisory Board.  He retired from Montana State University in 2013 where he served two terms as president of the Staff Senate.  During his time in Bozeman Kevin has served as president of the Downtown Bozeman Association and the Monforton Education Association and has volunteered for various other community organizations. He and his wife Pam have four grown children, three of whom live in Bozeman. 
 
 
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Michael Tess
Member at Large
Mike Tess retired from Montana State University in 2009 after 28 years in academic research, teaching and administration.  Mike and his wife, Kathy, are the proud parents of four children and 15 grandchildren.  Mike owns a small consulting business, Packhorse Services, LLC and serves as an elder for the Bozeman church of Christ.  He has been involved with Family Promise in Bozeman for about nine years.
 
 
 
 
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 Matt Hudak, Financial Planner at Raymond James
Member at Large
After moving from Bozeman to Seattle where he earned his Bachelors degree in Biblical Literature specializing in Biblical Languages from Northwest University, Matt worked in the housing industry managing a large real estate rental portfolio until moving back to Bozeman, his hometown, with his wife Christa.  At that time, he worked at the HRDC in the Section 8 and Road to Home progams.  Now a partner in his family’s financial planning firm, Matt specializes in financial planning, charitable giving strategies, and asset management.  He holds several financial designations. Matt is passionate about serving people in our community and is actively engaged in ministry as a pastor at Bozeman Church.