2022 Leadership Presenters
Montana’s Constitution, Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson is a former Montana Supreme Court Justice and frequent commentator in newspapers across Montana.
Reproductive rights, Nancy Keenan
Nancy Keenan is the former Executive Director of National Abortion Rights Action League, former Executive Director of the Montana Democratic Party, and former Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Indian Education for All and Critical Race Theory, Denise Juneau
Denise Juneau is the former Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction, Superintendent of Seattle Public Schools, and Indian Education Specialist for the Office of Public Instruction.
The assault on voting rights, Mike Cooney
Mike Cooney ran for Governor in 2020. He served as Lieutenant Governor for Governor Steve Bullock, as Secretary of State, and in the Montana Senate.
Direct Action, Jake Kreilick and Dan Funsch
Jake has a long history of involvement in forest protection and restoration, including two-plus decades of organizing direct action and civil disobedience with groups including Earth First!, Native Forest Network, and the National Forest Protection Alliance. Jake's international activism took him to Australia and Malaysia, where he blockaded a logging project and spent 3 months in jail in the late 80's.
Dan's involvement with direct action began in the early 80s in upstate New York, where he was arrested in anti-nuclear protests with the Berrigan brothers (Jesuit priest Daniel and Catholic priest Philip). Dan's focus then shifted to neighborhood organizing around the issues of utility rates, healthcare and clean water, and he brought his organizing experience to Montana in the mid 80s before shifting to
conservation and forest issues.
Labor, James Burrows
James Burrows is the communications director for the Montana AFL-CIO, a federation of 38 unions and more than 50,000 workers across Montana. During the 2021 legislative session he led labor’s rapid response team and coordinated messaging that helped kill more than a dozen anti-worker bills.
Agriculture issues in Montana, Walt Schweitzer
Walter Schweitzer is a rancher and current President of Montana Farmers Union. He also worked in Brian Schweitzer’s administration as well as numerous campaigns at the local and state level.
Commencement speech and social hour, US Senator Jon Tester