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April 2018

APRIL 2018

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Bernard Rose Believes in Books’ Impact

Billings’ Bernard Rose was a gifted economics professor. He finds that the arts and humanities are an important part of his life. He leads the One Book Billings program that provides books, sets up discussion groups, and brings authors to the Billings Public Library to discuss their Montana-based books. He also serves on the advisory committee for the Montana Center for the Book at Humanities Montana, helping select recipients of the MCB Prize for programs focused on literacy and literary discussions.

It’s with special appreciation, then, we acknowledge Bernie has named Humanities Montana in a planned gift. His support assures his values and enthusiasm will endure. Visit this page to see members of our Legacy Society—and consider joining this distinguished group by making a planned gift today. Contact Ken Egan for more information.

Thanks so much, Bernie!

Spotlight On: Plant a Seed...Read!

Plant a Seed...READ! received the 2017 Center for the Book Prize for their commitment to promoting literacy and literature in their communities.

This innovative new organization is laying the foundation for the next generation of emotionally healthy and literate children in rural Montana. The Havre-based nonprofit supports children and families by enhancing literacy, language and social/emotional skills from birth to age five.

Click to read more.

NEH Makes Such a Difference for Montana

Thanks to everyone who advocated for federal funding for state humanities councils, Humanities Montana will see a small increase in our general operating support grant for 2018. Our goal is simple but profound: Humanities for every Montanan! Our gratitude to Senators Tester and Daines and Representative Gianforte for their support for quality programs throughout Montana and especially in rural and reservation communities.

Grant Deadlines

Humanities Montana's next grant application deadline is April 20, 2018 for regular grants (over $1,000).

Opportunity grants are available for up to $1,000. These quick-action grants are especially helpful for new or emerging humanities projects in smaller communities.

Event Calendar

Visit our online calendar to find out about upcoming Humanities Montana-sponsored events.


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Humanities Montana strives to enrich the lives of all Montanans by fostering inquiry and stimulating civil and informed conversations about the human experience.

Much more information on Humanities Montana and its many programs and services is available on our website.

Write us at:

Humanities Montana
311 Brantly
Missoula, MT, 59812-7848

or contact us via email, or call us at 406-243-6022.

Nominate a Montanan for Governor’s Humanities Award by April 27

Humanities Montana seeks nominations for the 2019 Governor’s Humanities Awards, to be conferred at a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on February 7, 2019.

Nominations of individuals aged 40 years and younger are especially welcome so we may recognize and honor great promise, innovation, or achievement in the humanities. The deadline for nominations is Friday, April 27, 2018.

Nominations should be no more than 1,000 words and should address the nominee’s contributions to the humanities in Montana. The humanities include the study of literature, history, Native American history and cultures, philosophy, languages, religious studies and other disciplines. Nominations for both individuals and organizations will be considered. Members of the Humanities Montana board and staff are not eligible for consideration, nor are deceased individuals. Nominations should be e-mailed here or sent to Governor’s Humanities Awards, Humanities Montana, 311 Brantly, Missoula, MT 59812. If you have questions, call (406) 243-6022 or visit our website.

Discuss Journalism’s Role in Your Community with Leading Scholars

What is the future of journalism? How can local journalism, so long a mainstay of community life, be revitalized? What can be done to increase news literacy and combat "fake news"? How has American journalism historically responded to periods of political upheaval and change?

Humanities Montana now offers a new catalog of programs focusing on these questions and others in order to encourage all Montanans to explore the role of journalism in a democratic society. Join the discussion in several ways:

  • Book one of more than a dozen programs from our special Informed Citizen catalog (see directions below).
  • Work with Humanities Montana staff to put together a community conversation featuring local journalists and journalism scholars—send us an email or call Kim Anderson at 406-243-6022.
  • Watch for news about presentations by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists coming to Montana later this year.

You can apply for a program funded by Humanities Montana using our easy online application (identical to our Montana Conversations and Speakers in the Schools applications). All Informed Citizen discussion leaders are selected through a careful application and review process in order to assure the highest quality. Thank you to The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Federation of State Humanities Councils for your generous support of this initiative, and the Pulitzer Prizes for your partnership.

Apply to Host Hometown Humanities 2018-19

Hometown Humanities is a program of Humanities Montana that brings a year’s worth of free humanities programming and support for humanities projects to one Montana town. In the past year, Humanities Montana has provided over 40 programs and supported multiple projects in Sidney, including a discussion series on diversity in Montana, readings and workshops with the Montana Poet Laureate, a community conversation on the importance of journalism amid charges of "fake news," and a variety of programs designed for area schools.

Do you want your town to be the next Hometown site? Tell us why through our online application. Any town with a population under 20,000 is eligible and the application deadline is May 15th. We look forward to discovering our next Hometown!

Visit our Hometown Humanities page for more information and a calendar of events, and contact Brooke with questions or requests.

Hometown Humanities Sidney Features Poetry Month

It’s a busy month in Sidney as teachers and cultural organizations celebrate spring with poetry, Native American literature, and dance:

Born to Poetry: a Collection of Montana Indian Poets and Poetry with Dorothea Susag, 7:00 pm, MonDak Heritage Center

Introduction to The Round House by Louise Erdrich with Dorothea Susag, 6:30 pm, Sidney-Richland County Library

Montana’s Historic Poets with Tami Haaland, 7:00 pm, MonDak Heritage Center

Developing Community Literary Programs with Tami Haaland, 6:30 pm, Sidney-Richland County Library

WordSongs: Bringing Poetry to Life with Dave Caserio, 7:00 pm, MonDak Heritage Center

Express to Speak with Tahj Kjelland, 7:00 pm, MonDak Heritage Center

Dottie, Tami, Dave, and Tahj will all be working in classrooms as will Mark Matthews, who returns for two full days teaching kids of all ages about American dance.

The Montana Center for the Book will be at MLA

If you’re attending the Montana Library Association annual meeting in Bozeman (April 11-14) please drop in on our session Friday morning at 9:30! Director of Programs and Grants, Kim Anderson will be sharing details about new programs including the Montana Center for the Book Prize and support for book groups, and she’s looking for input on how the Center can better support libraries and communities.

Word Meisters Compete in Great Falls April 12

Do you suffer from logophilia? If so, attend the Great Falls Grand Word Meisters Contest Thursday, April 12 at 7 pm at the Great Falls Public Library. There is still time to enter a 2-3 person team. Costumes are encouraged! This fabulous event is in its 11th year. Participate or cheer on your favorite costumed group. For more information contact Jude Smith.

Scholars Apply for Hiett Prize in the Humanities by April 20

Montanans can compete for the prestigious Hiett Prize offered by the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. Each year it is awarded to a humanities scholar of promise and pays $50,000. The deadline for applications is April 20—you can read much more about this opportunity and access the application here.

In Memoriam:
Ruthann Knudson

Montana lost a gifted scholar and teacher with the passing of Ruthann Knudson. Dr. Knudson served on Humanities Montana’s Speakers Bureau/Montana Conversations roster for many years, delivering enthralling talks on American Indians from the Paleolithic period to the present. She was the owner of Knudson Associates, a cultural resource and interface management business in Great Falls, as well as an adjunct faculty member at Montana State University-Great Falls and former executive director of the Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian. Humanities Montana’s board and staff extend our condolences to Ruthann’s family and friends.

Grants Awarded:
March 2018

2018 Celebrate Islam Week, SALAM Missoula, Missoula, $900: Funding for a week of community events that highlight the cultural depth and breadth of Islam as a faith and way of life. 2018 Celebrate Islam Week will take place April 9 - April 13, 2018 in Missoula at the First Presbyterian Church, University of Montana, and Har Shalom Congregation.

One Robe Mentor, The Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana, Great Falls, $1,000: Stipend for Dr. Nicholas Vrooman to assist Kimberly McKeehan with a children's picture book about the history of the Little Shell Tribe.

The Ivan Doig Archive Curriculum Project, Montana State University Libraries, Bozeman, $917: Funding to support curriculum development using the physical and digital Ivan Doig Archives at MSU Bozeman. The project will promote place-based learning by giving students open access to primary materials that reflects the unique history, economic issues, working life, and folkways of Montana.

Scatter Their Own Workshop, Montana State University Billings, Billings, $1,000: Support for Scatter Their Own, A Native American (Lakota) rock band, to provide a workshop at the MSUB powwow. The workshop and concert will demonstrate the importance of indigenous people protecting the environment.

Thanks to Our Generous Supporters — March 2018


Kim Anderson*
Dave Caserio
Ken Egan*
Tami Haaland
Carla Homstad
Raela Hulett
Hal Stearns**
Dorothea Susag


Canton Church Restoration, Inc.
Daly Mansion Preservation Trust
Frenchtown Pond State Park
Gallatin History Museum
Georgetown Lake Homeowners Association
YWCA Missoula
Lewis and Clark Library

*Current Board and Staff Members
**Former Board and Staff Members