I was born and raised in Lewistown, Montana and graduated from Fergus County High School. I had a variety of jobs beginning with sacking groceries, then as a gas station attendant, and finally washing vehicles for UPS until I graduated. Lewistown didn’t offer many opportunities for a high school graduate, but I always had a job and learned the lesson of an honest day’s work. I did a variety of construction jobs before being hired by the Montana Department of Highways (now Dept. of Transportation) as a Surveyor’s Aide in Hysham, Montana in March of 1977. I stayed with the department and was soon located in Billings as a Surveyor’s Aide II.
I married Vicky Murray in 1978, who was also from Lewistown and in the same graduating class. Vicky was soon pregnant with our son Aaron and we realized that I needed a job with a higher pay grade to support our growing family. I applied and was accepted as a GVW (now MCS) Officer I in Kalispell in the winter of 1979. I spent the summer of 1979 at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy and graduated from the MLEA Basic Class #35 as a certified Peace Officer of the State of Montana. Vicky also worked a variety of jobs, mostly with special needs adults and children. Kalispell was our home for the next four years before I was transferred to Great Falls, where our daughter Amy was born. I was promoted to Assistant Supervisor in 1985 and transferred to Glendive. In the fall of 1986 I was promoted to Assistant Chief of Enforcement and transferred to Helena, which has since been our home. In 1989, I was promoted to the Administrator of the GVW (MCS) Division which was charged with licensing, permitting, and regulating commercial and farm vehicle traffic in Montana. In the spring of 2000, I accepted a position as Executive Vice President of the Montana Motor Carriers Association. I was only in that job for 9 months before Governor Elect Judy Martz convinced me to come back to the Department of Transportation as Director. My time at MDT provided me with a challenging and fulfilling career and I had the opportunity to work with talented and wonderful people.
When Governor Martz’s term expired in 2004, I was hired by the Montana Petroleum Association as their Executive Director. It was an interesting time as oil production in the Bakken was just hitting its stride and causing significant impacts to parts of Montana while also raising our State’s revenue considerably. After 10 years with the Petroleum Association, I left to join the firm of Browning, Kaleczyc, Berry and Hoven as a contract lobbyist in 2016. I lobbied for a host of industrial clients, but also non- industrial clients such as the Montana Sheriff’s and Peace Officers Association and the Association of Montana Public Retired Employees. BKBH gave me a wider scope of lobbying experience and a deeper appreciation of the expansive scope of issues addressed at the Montana Legislature. I semi-retired from BKBH in 2019 and have provided contract government affairs services to a few clients. One being the Calumet Refinery in Great Falls, where I am working with them to convert a large portion of the plant to a renewable diesel process.
While I worked as an Administrator of GVW/MCS, I attended Carroll College at night and during the summers. It took me eight years, but I earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in December of 1996. At the same time Vicky attended Carroll full time and graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor of Arts degree (Education and Special Ed). I look back at a lifetime of hard work, not only on my part but by all members of our family, and feel proud that I took every opportunity to work hard, further my education, and accept professional challenges. I am a product of, and believe in, private and public education. I am a retired state employee and hold high regard for Montana’s State employees, their pension benefits, and the value of public service. I have also learned a deep respect for those that work in the construction, mining, timber, oil and gas, and trucking industries that support the great State of Montana. Public service has been a part of my professional life and serving in the legislature is one more avenue to continue contributing to our state.
Paid for by Dave Galt for SD 41. Republican. PO Box 1585 Helena, MT 59624.