Montana Tech to Recognize 2022 Distinguished Alumni


Four alumni will be recognized during Homecoming Week as Distinguished Alumni of Montana Technological University. The awards are conferred by the Montana Tech Alumni Association.

“The 2022 class of Distinguished Alumni honorees share an exemplary commitment to the mission, vision and values of Montana Technological University and continue a time-honored tradition of Digger Excellence,” Montana Tech Foundation CEO Jamie Heppler said. “I am personally moved by the honorees’ steadfast loyalty to the university and their individual contributions, leadership and service to the Butte community. This year’s class proves the value of a Montana Tech education – a real time example of what’s possible when you put your degree and dreams to work.”

In its 122-year history Montana Tech alumni have used their connections and opportunities to help change the world. This year’s honorees are leaders at some of Butte’s largest and most influential companies.

“This is an extraordinary group of honorees whose breadth of expertise, generosity, and commitment to Montana Tech and our community is immense,” Chancellor Les Cook said. “Each has brought distinction to their career and the university, and we look forward to celebrating them later this month.”

Receiving the award are: Elizabeth Erickson BS ’88 Geophysical Engineering and MS ’95 Geoscience/Hydrological Engineering; Mike McGivern BS ’89 Occupational Safety & Health; Dan Manson BS ’92 Environmental Engineering; and Kristen Manson BS ’92 Engineering Science.

Elizabeth Erickson is Water & Environmental Engineering’s (WET) founder and principal hydrologist, an environmental consulting firm in Butte.

“I am honored to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award,” Erickson said. “I have always valued my education from Montana Tech. It has enabled me to have an amazing and diverse career; ranging from exploring for oil along the East African Rift to starting an environmental consulting business in Butte, Montana, which has grown from 3 people to now over 100. My greatest professional achievement, however, is the ability to provide well-paying jobs here in Montana (and now Wyoming) and enabling Montana kids to come home and make a good living.”

Mike McGivern is the vice president of human resources at Montana Resources, which operates the Continental mine in Butte, a producer of copper and molybdenum.

“I’m very honored to receive this award from Montana Tech,” McGivern said. “Tech helped me land my first job. The GM at a mine in South Dakota was an alum of Tech and reached out to the OSH/IH Department inquiring about students who could fill an IH position. Out of the blue a HR person called my house and asked if I would like to come interview. That’s the great thing about Tech. There is a network of very successful people in the industry that continue to support and recruit Tech students. I’ve always felt an obligation to Tech for helping me get my foot in the door and launching my career in the mining industry.”

McGivern has taught as an adjunct professor since 2007. He has also served on the OSH/IH Advisory Board and the Montana Tech Foundation Board. He is married to an Oredigger alumnae. One daughter has graduated from Tech, and another is a current student.

Dan and Kristen Manson are married and reside in Butte. Kristen serves as manager of producer & utility services at JETCO Services, LLC, which is a natural gas marketing firm.

“I am honored to be recognized as a Distinguished Alumni,” Kristen said. “Montana Tech provided me with an excellent education, valuable opportunities, and an intimate network of industry professionals who hold our university in high regard. Based upon my experiences, I am a firm believer in the positive aspects Montana Tech brings to our youth and our community.”

Dan serves as chief legal counsel for Town Pump, Inc. He received his J.D. from the University of Montana in 1996 and a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Washington in 2006.

“I am honored and humbled to be recognized for the distinguished alumni award,” Dan said. “Although my career path has diverged from my engineering degree at Montana Tech, the foundation provided by a degree from Montana Tech prepared me very well. Serving many years on the Board of Directors of the Montana Tech Foundation afforded me the opportunity to remain connected to this wonderful university. The dedication of the staff and faculty, and the generosity of alumni and friends of Montana Tech are truly amazing.”