Our amazing members in the 2013 Montana Legislature

Fourteen MEA-MFT members served in the 2013 Montana Legislature. Thirteen of them deserve special recognition as outstanding friends of public education, public services, and public employees.

All of these member-legislators work long, intense hours for the people they represent, both during the legislative session and between sessions. Some of these members are legislative veterans; others were freshmen this session.

One freshman legislator, Amanda Curtis of Butte, posted a daily YouTube video during the session, describing her experiences. On her last video, she said this:

“I’ve learned that Montana truly does have a citizen legislature. Ayone can be involved. I’ve also learned that people across Montana really are interested in having a voice. They are paying attention. You are paying attention.

“You can be involved. We should be doing it, so we are at the table when decisions are being made that affect us. Because if we don’t make the decisions, someone else will make them for us.”

Our thanks to all of these members for doing double-duty Work That Matters for Montana’s people!

Representative Edie McClafferty,
Butte. Fifth grade teacher. Third term. Passionate supporter of Head Start; carried our Head Start bill this session and last.

Senator Dick Barrett,
Missoula. Retired economics professor, U of M. Two terms in the House. First session in the Senate. Strong voice for fair taxation.

Representative Franke Wilmer,
Bozeman. Political science and international studies professor, MSU Bozeman. Third term. Fought eloquently for pensions, voting rights and against school privatization.

Representative Casey Schreiner,
Great Falls. Middle school science teacher. First term. Worked especially hard on the state pay plan, voting rights, and student truancy.

Representative Bob Mehlhoff,
Great Falls. Retired math, chemistry, business teacher. Third term in the House. Especially helpful this session on pensions.

Representative Jean Price,
Great Falls. Retired art teacher. Second term in the House. Served on House Education Committee: a real test of patience and perseverance.

Representative Doug Coffin,
Missoula. Molecular genetics professor, U of M. First term. Forceful advocate for higher education.

Representative Frosty Calf Boss Ribs,
Heart Butte. Elementary teacher. Second term in the House. Especially strong on voting rights for all Montanans.

Senator Tom Facey, Missoula.
High school science teacher. Four terms in the House. Second session in the Senate. One of our main go-to folks in the Senate, particularly on public employee pensions.

Representative Amanda Curtis,
Butte. High school math teacher. First term. Carried MEA-MFT’s bill to use lottery revenues for higher education.

Representative Tom Woods,
Bozeman. Molecular biology and physics professor, MSU Bozeman. First term. Heroic sponsor of the bill to save the Teachers Retirement System.

Senator Robyn Driscoll,
Billings. Education support professional. Four terms in the House. First term in the Senate. Spoke forcefully against privatizing Montana Developmental Center.

Representative Mary McNally,
Billings. Business professor, MSU Billings. Second term. Eloquent spokesperson on the House floor.