Letter from the Director November 2023

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Humanities Montana Staff at the National Humanities Conference in Indianapolis. L to R: Megan Sundy, Jill Baker, Jenny Bevill, John Knight
Jill Baker and Mary Jane Bradbury in Winnett

Humanities Montana staff have been traveling across the state and country this fall to meet with friends and make some new friends along the way. Last month, I had an opportunity to attend a Humanities Montana program at the newly built Petroleum County Community Center in Winnett. It was a wonderful venue and an excellent program for their annual Harvest Dinner. Thanks to Winnett for the warm welcome, and to Mary Jane Bradbury for her talented storytelling of Nancy Russell!

On my way back to Missoula, I stopped in White Sulphur Springs and stayed at the Camas Ranch with former board member Jamie Doggett. Her service to the humanities is nothing short of amazing. She was appointed to the Humanities Montana Board by Governors Stan Stephens and Marc Racicot. Then, she was elected to the board for the Federation of State Humanities Councils. Jamie went on to be appointed to the board for the National Council for the Humanities by President Bush. Her service to the Humanities spanned 1989–2010; she then served another term from 2020–2023. I can tell you that the arts and humanities are alive and well in rural Montana, no doubt due to her influence!

Our staff rounded out the month of travels in Indianapolis at the National Humanities Conference. It was a great learning experience and an impressive community of humanists. Our staff are inspired to make our program offerings and grant making even stronger.

I am optimistic about the future at Humanities Montana!

Jill Baker
Executive Director