Candidate Forums

We know that when young people turn out, progress happens. That’s why hosting candidate forums in local elections in our three major cities – Missoula, Bozeman, and Billings – is a cornerstone of our work. Along with local partners, we host fun, engaging and youth-oriented candidate forums so that local government candidates understand they are accountable to us, too.


“I had no idea what was going on at the Badlander when I walked in. Pretty soon after I’d sat down, I was watching candidates for city council play flip cup and talk about how high the rent is in Missoula.”
– Sarah P., Missoula
Youth Turnout

When young people host candidate forums, young people show up. We know how to throw forums that are less of a yawn and more of an informational, educational party. Young people consistently make up a significant portion of the audience for our candidate forums across the state.

“When I was new in Bozeman, it was FMT that I looked to for information that I could trust about candidates in local races.” – Chris T., Bozeman
Meaningful Millennial Content

I had no idea what was at stake in these races and FMT helped me identify candidates that lined up with my values.” – Amara R., Bozeman

At the 2017 Missoula Municipal Candidate forum, over 50 young people engaged with city council candidates on issues that matter to us. Forward Montana pressed candidates to talk about the impact of the University’s budget crisis and how they were going to ensure housing is affordable to young Montanans. When young people are meaningfully included in candidate forum planning, candidates are held accountable to our values and needs.