Board Candidate 2019 / Voicing Our Values

Bennett Cawthon

June 14, 2019

CEO, Streamline Farms

(Bozeman, MT)

What is your experience with Forward Montana, or our sister organization Forward Montana Foundation, and why is our work important to you?

Forward Montana has always texted and/or called me during election cycles. They have engaged in stimulating and thoughtful conversation with me regardless of my views on voting topics. I think this neutral approach that is explicitly conveying the absolute facts of a specific bill is paramount in maintaining an open and true democracy.

Why are you interested in joining the Forward Montana Board?

I want to represent both my community and my generation to work towards a future that accurately addresses the pressing issues Montanans face now, and will in the years and decades to come.

What skills, characteristics, experience, or insight do you have that would be a valuable addition to the board?

I have close ties to my community, strong organizational skills, and a track record in project management, delegation, and seeing a project through to the finish. I am extroverted and thrive with stimulating conversation that I feel matters to a ‘bigger picture’. My passion for open land, resource efficiency, and building resilient local economies would be my greatest contribution. I currently also serve on the ‘Next-Gen’ board at the Gallatin Valley Land Trust (GVLT).

What experience do you have fundraising, and what is your comfort level with asking for money?

I have successfully raised six figure sums to start my own company, and secured all sales. I graduated with a Business Finance degree from MSU and have worked in wealth management. Numbers do not make me uncomfortable.

Being a board member requires a time commitment to meetings, phone calls, occasional events, etc. Will you be able to fulfill these time commitments? Does anything give you pause?

Yes I will be able to fulfill these commitments with zero hesitation.

Good board members invest their time into Forward Montana, are ambassadors for the organization, are familiar with the work of the organization, and are responsive to other board members and staff. How will you go above and beyond being a good board member? How will you be a great board member?

I work 7 days a week. Not by necessity, but by choice. I will be a local advocate and engage with other board members on a regular basis to ensure that our message is unified, cohesive, and being directed towards the right people. I will be a great member because of my strong ability to work with a team and my ability to be a dynamic problem solver who doesn’t lose the ‘big picture’.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

I appreciate the board taking the time to review this application. I hope that if I am not selected, it is because a more qualified candidate has been chosen. I would be more than happy if that is the case, so long as Forward Montana is in the best hands with representation that fit the organizations long-term aspirations.