I feel fortunate to live and work in Montana, and I don’t take it for granted. I was born here, earned degrees here, and have made lifelong friendships here for which I’ll always be grateful. But it’s not clear whether future generations of Montanans may be so lucky. While many of us would willingly pay a little extra to support strong communities and healthy landscapes, it’s becoming more expensive to be a Montanan. This is why sustainability, affordability, and equality will be my guiding principles as a state legislator.
My worldview has been shaped by our public schools and from having lived in our urban and rural communities. I was born in Missoula and grew up on the Flathead Reservation as a member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT). After earning my bachelor of science in resource conservation at the University of Montana, I stayed here to obtain my law degree as well. I wanted to work directly on the issues I had seen and experienced growing up. After topping off my legal studies at the University of Arizona with a master of laws, I was fortunate to land a job with the CSKT after graduating, first as a prosecutor, and then as a member of the Tribes legal department. I own a home in Missoula with my wife who is also an attorney who works in House District 95.
I filed as a Democratic candidate to represent House District 95 because I know that our great state can and should be a place of opportunity for all Montanans. We have accomplished a great deal, but there is much more work to be done. It is time for us to fully achieve equality for women, minorities, and low-income families. It is time for us to candidly face our issues in addiction, mental health, homelessness, and student debt. As an attorney who has assisted in passing legislation in 2013 and 2015, I have the skills and working relationships to hit the ground running as your state legislator in 2017.