Highlands College to Host Major Speaker Series

Highlands College to Host Major Speaker Series


Dr. John Garic, Dean of Highlands College, today announced a blue-ribbon list of guest speakers coming to Highlands College/Montana Tech as part of an exciting new course being offered this fall open to both students and community members. The course/speaker series is entitled “20th Century Montana – People, Policies & Perspectives.”

The timing of the course/speaker series is convenient for both students and community members being scheduled for 5-6:15 PM on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Room 111 at Highlands starting August 27 and continuing until December 10.

The instructor is Evan Barrett of Butte, new to the Montana Tech/Highlands College administration and faculty after serving 44 years at the top level of Montana government, politics, economic development and education, and most recently as Governor Brian Schweitzer’s Chief Business Development Director for 8 years. Barrett was Executive Director of the Butte Local Development Corporation for 18 years prior to joining Governor Schweitzer.

Dr. Garic said that “bringing to our students & community two former Governors, a former Congressman, the Supreme Court Chief Justice, a former Secretary of State, two key Constitutional Convention Delegates, a number of key legislative leaders including a Speaker of the House & Senate President, a former Public Service Commissioner, and top leaders in other sectors provides an unparalleled opportunity to learn first-hand from those who helped shape our state in the 20th Century.” Authors of three significant relevant Montana history books are also part of the agenda.

In addition to being available to students for credit, the course/speaker series is available as community education or continuing education for a modest fee of $80.

The list and sequence of guest speakers follows:
•         Chief Justice Mike McGrath, MT Supreme Court
•         Clem Work, UM Journalism School - author of “Darkest Before Dawn”•         Dr. Jerry Calvert, MSU Professor Emeritus, author of “The Gibraltar (Socialism and Labor in Butte, MT 1895-1920)”•         Jim Murry, Executive Secretary, Montana State AFL-CIO (1969-1991)
•         Marilyn Ross, Women’s History Specialist
•         Dennis Swibold, UM Journalism School - author of “Copper Chorus”
•         Mae Nan Ellingson, attorney & Constitutional Convention delegate
•         Wade DaHood, attorney,  & Con-Con delegate (chair of Bill of Rights Committee)
•         Dorothy Bradley, former State Legislator & Gubernatorial Candidate
•         Tom Towe, former State Senator & author of Coal Severance Tax & Trust Fund
•         Hal Harper, 30-year Legislator and former Montana Speaker of the House
•         Ellen Shannon Crain, Director of Butte Archives
•         Bruce Nelson, former Congressional & Gubernatorial Chief of Staff & Nat’l Farm Service Agency Director
•         Pat Williams, former (18 year) member of Congress from Montana & UM Prof
•         Bob Brown, 26 year Legislator, former President of the Senate, Secretary of State & Gubernatorial Candidate
•         Dave Lewis, State Senator & former State Budget Director
•         Eric Feaver, President MEA/MFT
•         David Ewer, former State Legislator & Budget Director
•         Ken Toole, former State Senator & Public Service Commissioner
•         Brian Schweitzer, former Governor of Montana  (2005-2013)
A special historical film appearance from former Governor Ted Schwinden (Governor 1981-1989) is also part of the course/speaker series.
“This is a great opportunity for Montana Tech students and community members to experience an incredible group of speakers,” said Montana Tech Chancellor Don Blackketter. “The speakers are truly a diverse group of individuals that have, are, and will continue to help shape Montana. I encourage folks to either enroll in the course or come out and participate as much as possible.”

For any further information about this issue or for information about participation in the course/ speaker series, should contact Evan Barrett (406-496-4489) (ebarrett@mtech.edu) or Dr. John M. Garic, Dean (406-496-3714) (jgaric@mtech.edu). Registration is going on right now and should be completed as soon as possible.