Staff

Kiersten Iwai

(she/her/hers)

Executive Director

Inside the office: Kiersten spends her time bragging about Forward Montana’s badass programs, staff, and interns.

Outside the office: You can find Kiersten eating french fries after a long day in the mountains or dancing the night away.

Amara Reese-Hansell

(she/her/hers)

Program Director

Inside the Office: Amara enjoys telling poorly delivered jokes to anyone who will listen and being inspired by the young people that walk through the doors of FMT everyday.

Outside the Office: Amara likes to drink wine and spend time with her angel pup, Ren — also known as Rennifer, and provide skincare consultations to her friends (even when they haven’t requested one).

Annie Warner

(she/her/hers)

Senior Operations Manager

Inside the Office: Annie is most likely on her fourth cup of coffee and feeling jazzed about expense reports and democracy!

Outside the Office: Annie is either shredding fresh pow on the mountain or tossing out unsolicited podcast recommendations. Or else, check Costco.

TW Bradley

(they/them/theirs)

Development Manager

Inside the Office: Bradley can be found listening to classical music and thinking up new ways to get more people involved within democracy.

Outside the Office: Bradley enjoys caring for their plants, propagating new plant babies, and can be found at any local farmers market buying even more plants.

Erin Miller

(she/her/hers)

Senior Organizing Manager

Inside the Office: Erin is doing her best to know the whos who and the whats what after relocating to Missoula from Kentucky in January 2018. #AspiringHBIC

Outside the Office: Erin can be found basking in the sun like an iguana.

Pari Kemmick

(she/her/hers)

Billings Field Manager

Inside the Office: Pari gets SO excited about the people and places of Eastern Montana and how hard our volunteers and interns work to make it a better, more inclusive place.

Outside the Office: Pari can be found drinking champagne or exploring the state, finding every last body of water to soak in with her sweet partner and pup.

Emma Bode

(she/her/hers)

Bozeman Field Manager

Inside the Office: Emma gets nerdy with the data and is energized by intern and volunteer passion for youth engagement.

Outside the Office: Emma can be found rambling around the mountains, rescuing overripe produce, or making unconventional concoctions in the kitchen.

McKeely Shannon

(she/her/hers)

High School Program Manager

Inside the Office: McKeely can be found being a general enthusiast about the dedication of high schoolers to create change in their communities and state.

Outside the Office: McKeely is usually moseying around the outdoors, cooking for her friends, and reading one of the many library books she has checked out.

Trista Fery

(she/her/hers)

Digital Communications Manager

Inside the Office: To the tune of whatever new artist she’s listening to that week, Trista is most likely consuming copious amounts of coffee while tracking social media accounts and following breaking news.

Outside the Office: Trista can be found experimenting with new recipes, taking laps at Bridger Bowl, or obsessing over her cat Meeko with whoever will listen.

Kenzie Carter

(she/her/hers)

Missoula Field Manager

Inside the Office: Kenzie can be found making reliably undignified facial expressions during Zoom calls and happily wrangling a small but mighty herd of interns.

Outside the Office: Kenzie chronically overuses the word “Yeehaw” and channels the major horse-girl energy leftover from her childhood into watercolor paintings of oddly-proportioned cowgirls.

Brian Hoffman

(he/him/his)

Flathead Field Manager

Inside the Office: Brian can be found reconnecting with his hometown community of Kalispell after moving back from Brooklyn and brainstorming ways to get folks in the Flathead Valley excited about voting.

Outside the Office: Brian can be found birdwatching, eating lots of cookies, and stealing his parents’ dog to go swimming in the lake.

Angie Hoang standing in front of brick wall

Angie Hoang

(she/they)

Content Creator

Inside the Office: Angie can be found sitting cross-legged in their chair or laying on the floor while they figure out how to make cute graphics that gets people excited about democracy!

Outside the Office: Angie is either recording music, helping a friend mix their next album, or loudly playing tunes while trying out a new recipe.

Izzy Milch

(they/them/theirs)

LGBTQ+ Advocacy Organizer

Inside the Office: Inside the ‘office,’ you can find me getting all riled up about various injustices and touting the benefits of blue light glasses.

Outside the Office: Outside the office, I’m either at the skatepark, in the woods with my dog, or curled up somewhere reading a trashy young adult novel or playing the Sims.

Siesa is sitting cross legged on the ground in front of a smooth rock formation at dusk, and wearing a light toned head scarf, hoop earrings, a black sweater and dark green pants

Siesa Shuman

(she/her/hers)

Billings Leadership Development Organizer

Inside the Office: Siesa can be found snacking and connecting the Billings community through civic engagement.

Outside the Office: Siesa is pretending its not actually that cold and camping in one of Montana’s beautiful backyards.

Forward Montana staff member Abby Sophir, smiling in front of mountain background scene

Abby Sophir

(she/her/hers)

Census/GOTV/Issue Advocacy Manager

Inside the Office?: You can find me dreaming up ideas about how to spread the census word across our state and supporting our awesome census team!

Outside the Office?: Find me seeking out new wildflower patches and swim holes, aimlessly wandering through thrift stores, or cozied in up my room with a craft project and book.

Forward Montana staff Grace standing on dirt road with small donkey

Grace Benasutti

(she/her/hers)

Census/GOTV/Legislative Organizer

Inside the Office?: Drinking coffee, creating way too many checklists, spreading Census eXcItEmEnT, and keeping my roommate’s cat out of my plants (when WFH).

Outside the Office?: Drinking (more) coffee and/or beer, supporting local businesses, and playing in the water! (Recently learned how to float on my back, so that’s been fun) Also continuing to keep my roommate’s cat out of my plants….