Montana Association of Museums

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News To Share

Understanding the New Overtime Final Rule

On September 24, 2019, the U.S. Department of Labor announced its Overtime Final Rule that adjusts the salary level test, part of a three-part test for determining when white-collar workers are exempt or must be paid overtime for working more than 40 hours in a week. Effective January 1, 2020, the salary threshold for the white-collar exemption from overtime pay will rise to $684 per week ($35,568 per year). The Final Rule also raises the salary threshold for highly compensated employees who are exempt from FLSA overtime pay requirements from $100,000 per year to $107,432 per year and allows employers to satisfy up to 10 percent of the standard salary level by using non-discretionary bonuses and incentive payments.

The Artist, His Wife, and the Land of the Shining Mountains: Charles M. Russell in Glacier National Park

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
6 p.m. | FREE
C.M Russell Museum

In 1905, Charlie and Nancy Russell bought land in what would become Glacier National Park. Thereafter, they spent every summer for the next twenty years at the cabin they built on the shores of Lake McDonald, entertaining friends and prominent artists of the day, exploring the park, and reveling in the rugged beauty of the mountains. While Charlie’s paintings vividly captured the waning days of the mythical Wild West, much of the inspiration for his remarkable art came from the natural landscape of Montana itself often as seen from the shores of Lake McDonald.

Join historic interpreter Mary Jane Bradbury as she brings Nancy Russell to life, sharing the stories of summers spent at Bullhead Lodge with Montana’s cowboy artist, his gift for portraying, in image and story, the west of our imaginations, and his abiding connection to the place he called home.

Beautification Project Creates Inviting Community Space as C.M. Russell Museum Campus Grows

GREAT FALLS, Mont., November 5, 2019 – The C.M. Russell Museum will be kicking up dust in the coming months as it begins an exciting new chapter for the museum complex. With its recent acquisition of 1221 5th Avenue North, the museum now owns the entire north side of the 5th Avenue North block between 12th and 13th Streets. Long-term planning for this 2.1-acre campus expansion is underway while neighborhood beautification and green space development will begin soon.

“The C.M. Russell Museum is a premiere cultural center in our community, Montana, and the American West. We are challenging ourselves with this new space to reimagine our campus in a way that ensures our facility reaches its full potential,” said executive director Thomas Figarelle. “While we cultivate those plans, the home of Charlie Russell will get a new backyard.”

After a thorough evaluation and an environmental site assessment funded through a grant from the Great Falls Development Authority earlier this year, the existing structures on 5th Avenue North were determined not viable for museum use. Currently the museum is seeking opportunities for the community to benefit from the buildings through material donations to Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Removal of the buildings will begin in the coming weeks with a focus on conservation of mature trees and landscaping.

Once the buildings are removed, sod will be installed to make the new outdoor area inviting. Benches and picnic tables will also be added. “The museum prides itself on being a responsible friend to the community. We are already having great conversations with our neighbors and look forward to seeing them enjoy the green space,” said Figarelle.

Near-term and long-term planning for the expansion begins this month with a Campus Master Plan Task Force co-chaired by board secretary and Great Falls resident Anne Martinez and architect Steve L’Heureux of L’Heureux Page Werner Architecture. The 15 board, staff and community members began meeting in October and will draft a plan to be formally considered by the Board of Directors in 2020.

Some preliminary work is already underway to open up possibilities for the new area. A statement of intent was submitted to the City of Great Falls to express the Museum’s desire to rezone properties to Public Lands and Institutions (PLI), potentially moving city utilities, extending parking agreements, and vacating the section of road that separates the existing campus and new properties. City staff has provided guidance on how to proceed through a public process to consider the proposed changes. Many of these changes will require City Commission approval after scheduled public hearings.

About the C.M. Russell Museum

The mission of the C.M. Russell Museum is to collect, preserve, research, interpret and educate on the art and life of Charles M. Russell; the art and lives of his contemporaries; and the art of preceding and ensuing generations that depicts and focuses on the culture, life and country of Russell’s West.

For further information please contact:
Christina Horton, Marketing Manager
C.M. Russell Museum
406-727-8787, ext. 352

Friday Flash from Montana Tourism Partners

Is everyone signed up for the Friday Flash from the Montana Tourism Partners and the Department of Commerce? This is a great opportunity to see what is going on across the state with tourism and to receive notification of their grant programs. Information on how to subscribe is in the link below.
Subscribe Here

Montana Arts Council

Looking for a statewide arts calendar? We’ve got you covered! Although State of the Arts and Lively Times no longer offer print versions of arts and exhibit calendars, you can still find that information online – Statewide Arts Calendar

Brorson Church Replica on Loan from Pella Church at the Mondak

Elmer & Clara Hagglund created a gift for the community, a replica of the Brorson Church out of agates they collected in Montana. By the Hagglunds combining their hobbies of rock collecting with their artistic and carpentry skills, a replica of the Brorson Church (built in 1903) became a reality. The permanent home of the replica is with Pella Church, located in Sidney, MT. But they wished to bring this gift to the community for their enjoyment and offered the MonDak Heritage Center the opportunity to display this amazing piece of art. Not only did the Hagglunds create the outside of the church, but when you look in the front entryway you can see the inside of the church, seats, people, and more. The replica is available for viewing from September 3 to November 2, 2019.
This exhibit has been extended through December 15, 2019.

“National Forests: American’s Recreation Legacy”

Missoula, Montana –Climbing and Mountaineering legend Conrad Anker will speak at the University Center Theatre at the University of Montana campus on Tuesday, November 12th, 2019 at 7 pm. The presentation, which is co-hosted by the National Museum of Forest Service History and the Maureen & Mike Mansfield Center’s Ethics and Public Affairs Program, is free to the public. Anker’s talk will link our National Forests to the country’s climbing and recreation history.

Conrad Anker has been pushing the limits of mountaineering for the last 30 years, evolving into one of America’s best alpinists. The Bozeman, Montana-based father of three is one of the most prolific explorers and mountaineers alive today. At age 56, Anker’s resume continues to grow, having notched the long-awaited first ascent of the Meru Shark’s Fin in India with partners Jimmy Chin and Renan Ozturk in 2011, which led to the Sundance-winning documentary, Meru. Anker has climbed Everest three times, including a 2012 trip with National Geographic to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first American ascent of the mountain. On his most famous Everest climb in 1999, he discovered the remains of George Mallory, one of the two British climbers who died attempting Everest in 1924, helping to shed more light on one of mountaineering’s most famous mysteries.

But for many years, one of his greatest passions has been down in the valley—specifically the Khumbu Valley of Nepal. In more than 25 years of expeditions to Nepal, Anker and his wife Jennifer Lowe-Anker, have developed deep relationships with the Sherpa people and founded the Khumbu Climbing Center in Phortse, Nepal, which provides a variety of safety training courses to high altitude workers.

The National Museum of Forest Service History, who is hosting the event, is a nonprofit organization independent from the U.S. Forest Service whose mission is to share the rich story and history of America’s Conservation legacy. They tell this story through a 50,000-item archival collection, virtual and traveling exhibits, National Teacher Training Workshops with the Library of Congress, and a 36-acre campus located one mile west of the Missoula Airport. The Museum is working towards building the National Conservation Legacy and Education Center- a world class conservation history center which will be located at their Missoula campus.

Lisa Tate, the Museum’s Executive Director, says, “We’re thrilled to host Conrad Anker, a legend among climbers, who understands the rich recreational values and history of our public lands. This is a rare opportunity to hear from one of the world’s foremost mountaineers.”

Former Chief of the Forest Service and Museum Board Member, Dale Bosworth, will introduce Anker.

For more information, please contact

From the Library of Congress

New Online: Suffrage, Civil War, Architecture Collections
Collections Include Records of National American Woman Suffrage Association, President Lincoln’s Private Secretary, Olmsted Associates Landscape Architectural Firm, Federal Monetary Policy
Researchers and students have gained access to seven newly digitized collections of manuscript materials from the Library of Congress, including records of one of the most important women’s suffrage organizations, the papers of President Abraham Lincoln’s personal secretary and collections on the history of federal monetary policy. The availability of these collections added more than 465,000 images to the Library’s already vast online resources.

Montana Memory Project needs Volunteers!

The Montana Memory Project is seeking volunteers. Please see the linked announcement and flyer. Please share these documents. Someone in your community might be exactly who we need!
Ambassador Announcement

Ambassador Flyer

Grant Opportunities

Montana History Foundation Grant Cycle Opens November 1st, Applications due January 10

We’re investing $160,000 across Montana during our upcoming 2020 grant cycle. Grants up to $10,000 will be available for projects that help preserve and protect Montana’s history. 501(c)(3) nonprofits and exempt governmental units can apply for funds to preserve buildings and cemeteries, conserve and exhibit artifacts, collect oral histories and more. Funding details and the application link can be found here.

Applications due by January 10, 2020. Contact Grants Manager Carissa Beckwith with any questions or to discuss your project before applying.

During the summer of 2019, our grants helped to preserve more than 36,000 pages of five Montana newspapers published between 1897 and 1960. All of those digitized pages are now freely available to the public on Click here for the full story.

Montana Memory Project Funding

The Montana State Library has $10,000 in Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) funds available for adding special collections to the Montana Memory Project (MMP). Funding awards can be up to $1,500 per project and must be used for costs specific to scanning and digitizing materials. No match is required, but libraries are asked to track the time and funds contributed to the project.

All Montana libraries are eligible to apply for these funds. Museums, historical societies, and archives in the state may also apply to have collections added to the MMP working in partnership with a local library. The Project Funding award will be made to the partner library.

Applications are due November 29, 2019.

Learn more about MMP funding

Revitalizing Montana’s Rural Heritage
State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO)

Montana’s State Historic Preservation Office recently received a $391,067 award from the National Park Service. This award will be turned into a statewide grant program for historic preservation in rural communities.

The first stage of applications will be due near the end of the 2019 calendar year.

Stay tuned for more details

Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program
Department of Commerce

Our friends at the Montana Department of Commerce are hard at work developing guidelines for the proposed historic preservation grant program. This program will provide new and ongoing funding (up to $500,000 per applicant) from the state lodging tax for the preservation of historic buildings and for museum infrastructure improvements. They are asking for your input on the proposed grant guidelines. Grant applications will be due on February 28, 2020.

This is your chance to help develop a program that meets historic preservation needs in your community, so please help them out by providing comments.

Also, consider attending the public hearing in Helena on December 2nd to hear more about these grants.

Learn more and submit comments

Department of Commerce Community Development

The Department of Commerce Community Development Division will begin accepting Montana Main Street Program grant applications for the FY 2020 application cycle on November 15, 2019.
The Montana Main Street Program awards grant funding to member communities on a competitive basis and as funding allows. Applications are evaluated by the Department of Commerce in the order that they are received and grants will be awarded on a continual basis until all funds are allocated. Funding can be used to address long range community planning and revitalization needs as well as more specific prioritized projects. Priority will be given to projects that demonstrate the implementation of larger community vision and goals or as they relate to previous or concurrent larger planning efforts (such as a downtown revitalization plan, growth policy, historic preservation plan, etc.).
If you have questions regarding the application process or guidelines, then please contact our office to work with a Montana Main Street team member at 406.841.2770 or by email at
301 S. PARK AVE. | PO BOX 200523 | HELENA, MT 59620-0501
P: 406.841.2770 | F: 406.841.2771 | TDD: 406.841.2702
View webpage

Professional Development Opportunities

Upcoming Continuing Education from AASLH

Webinar: Introduction to NEH Preservation Assistance Grants
November 19
FREE for everyone

Webinar: Introduction to Audio, Visual, and Film Media and Their Care
December 5
$40 members/$65 nonmembers

Webinar: Beyond the Spreadsheet: Finance and Organizational Priorities [
December 12
$40 members/$65 nonmembers
Online Course: Basics of Archives [] []
January 27-March 1, 2020
$85 members/$160 nonmembers

New on the Blog

StEPs Spotlight: Our Latest Gold Graduate, The Manitowoc County Historical Society
Making History Matter: Agency
Best Practices for StEPs Success
Announcing the AASLH National Visitation Report
StEPs Spotlight: Jackson County Historical Society

You’re invited! We’re counting down the days until our free Virtual Conference

The Secret Sauce to Year-End: Tools, Trends, and Tactics for Success on Wednesday, October 30th. We have an incredible group of nonprofit thought leaders. See below for our full session schedule and speaker lineup! Save your spot now.

Sessions include:

Building Donor Loyalty: What Do We Know From Research
Speaker: Dr. Adrian Sargeant, Institute for Sustainable Philanthropy

How Fundraising Can Cut Through the Clutter at Year-End
Speaker: Brady Josephson, NextAfter

How to Amplify Your Fundraising Efforts Using Facebook
Speaker: Jennifer Ybarra, Facebook

7 Years of GivingTuesday: Changing Giving Cultures Around the World, and Lessons for your Organization
Speaker: Jamie McDonald, GivingTuesday

Creating a Culture of Resilience Throughout Year-End
Speaker: Beth Kanter, Master Trainer & Author

Last-Minute Touches: Preparing Your Website for Year-End Fundraising
Speaker: Rachel Clemens, Mighty Citizen

P.S. Unable to attend the virtual conference? Register and we’ll send you the slides and recording afterwards!

Job Openings

Jobs Available

Holter Museum of Art
Position Description for Education Coordinator
TITLE: Education Coordinator
REPORTS TO: Executive Director
LIAISON TO: Board of Directors
LOCATION: Holter Museum of Art, 12 E. Lawrence Street, Helena, MT 59601
HOURS: Exempt
Education Coordinator, full-time position, Holter Museum of Art needs innovative, energetic, and community oriented person.
Job Description: The Holter Museum of Art’s Education Coordinator, is responsible for planning, developing, implementing, and supervising an integrative art education and appreciation program. This position reports directly to the Executive Director.
The successful candidate will have a minimum of B.A. or B.S. degree in art, education, art education, art history or related field, two years related work experience in the arts, museum, or educational setting. Must be proficient in word-processing on IBM PC, and possess a strong working knowledge of the visual arts in Montana and the Northwest region.
• Requires a high degree of computer proficiency
• Knowledge of Best Practices in the field a plus
• Individual must possess strong interpersonal skills and be diplomatic in working with diverse constituencies
• Excellent customer service
• Flexibility and reliability to multi-task and meet deadlines; strong ability to prioritize
• Ability to work well with staff, artists, schools, and the general public to promote the philosophy and goals of the Education Department and the Holter Museum of Art as a whole
• Knowledge of and interest in editing and design of print and online materials
COMPENSATION: Competitive based on experience and qualifications

The Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art
Job Title: Executive Director Reports to: Board of Directors Classification: Full-time, exempt
The Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art seeks and Executive Director to provide dynamic leadership and to direct policy making, planning, organization, staffing, and operations. The Executive Director will work closely with the Board of Directors to refine, develop, and implement a progressive program for the Museum’s fundraising, exhibitions, collections management, educational activities, and community outreach. The Executive Director manages on an annual budget of approximately $430,000 and directly supervises a staff of nine in a historic 48,000 square foot facility that rests on a complete city block located in the heart of Great Falls, Montana. 
Mission Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art supports contemporary arts and cultural opportunities in North Central Montana.

Vision Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art cultivates public exposure to contemporary and self-taught art through dynamic exhibitions, thoughtful collection and preservation, and multi-generational educational programming while serving as a cultural center in a historic building. We are unique by: • Creating opportunities for visitors with diverse experiences, needs, and interests to make a meaningful connection with art; • Collecting, preserving, exhibiting, and interpreting art that actively engages a diverse growing population; • Providing educational programming that inspires artistic expression and understanding; • Expanding public knowledge of, interest in, and support for the arts and artists of the region; and • Serving as a cultural center, and continuing the preservation of the historically significant building.

  • Approved April 2015 by the Board of Directors


Development (30%) ❑ Coordinates strategic fundraising plan as approved by the Board. Works with appropriate staff, Board Members and volunteers to develop and implement strategies for long-term sustainable funding, including funds for capital projects for building and grounds. ❑ Oversees grant research and writing for government, corporate, and private funding. Works with appropriate department heads to coordinate administration of grants received and to ensure periodic and final grant reports. ❑ Solicits individuals, businesses, foundations and other appropriate organizations for contributions, sponsorships, and other types of financial or operational support.

Financial Management (25%) ❑ Develops yearly organizational budget for board approval based on organizational goals. ❑ Monitors and approves financial transactions for the organization to ensure all income and expenditures are operationally appropriate and properly recorded in accordance with the approved budget. ❑ Direct transfers of funds between museum-held accounts to meet contractual obligations and ensure positive cash flow. ❑ Directs and oversees contracted or staff bookkeeping services, and ensures that appropriate records are kept of all monetary transactions. Provides details of financial transactions to Board of Directors and auditor upon request. ❑ Acts as primary liaison with department heads regarding monthly budget reports. Provides direction and assistance in monitoring expenditures and recording allocations accurately, and responds to inquiries.

Administrative (25%) ❑ Oversees the general operation of the museum. ❑ Performs all human resources responsibilities including, but not limited to: hiring and termination of staff, job descriptions, performance tools, and staff performance reviews. ❑ Provides overall management and supervision of staff performance by creating an environment that supports productivity and professional development. ❑ Ensures that individual department heads are meeting performance and budgetary goals. ❑ Ensures that quality services are provided in fulfillment of the mission, vision, and strategic plan. ❑ Coordinates and implements strategic plans and operational policies as approved by the Board. ❑ Works with Board Committees as appropriate. ❑ Prepares and presents monthly reports to the Board of Directors.

Marketing (15%) ❑ Presents mission and vision of the organization publicly and promotes the museum to local civic groups. ❑ Coordinates with appropriate staff, Board members, volunteers, and local non-profit cultural institutions to promote the museum locally and regionally.

Facilities Management (5%) ❑ Ensure that the museum’s physical plant, equipment, and security are properly maintained in accordance with the historic nature of the building. ❑ Establishes rates and develops appropriate contracts for long and short term rentals.

Qualifications and Skills ❑ Required Bachelor degree, preferred Masters ❑ Preferred degree in art, museum studies, arts administration, or related fields ❑ Minimum three years’ experience managing a non-profit or for-profit business, or equivalent ❑ A strong passion for our mission, see above ❑ Ability to develop a strategic plan that aligns with the vision and mission of the museum ❑ General knowledge of accounting and basic fiscal practices, as well as grant management regulations. ❑ Established grant writing and fundraising experience. ❑ Excellent verbal and written communication skills. ❑ Strong organization and project management skills. ❑ Exceptional skills in donor and membership relations and cultivation. ❑ Ability to develop leadership and collaboration among museum staff and volunteers. ❑ Ability to establish effective, efficient, and professional policies and procedures for museum staff and volunteers. ❑ Committed to professional best practices for nonprofit museum management.

Salary: $45,000-50,000 DOE. Benefits available after probationary period. Average per capita income in Great Falls, MT is $28,399.

Community: Great Falls straddles the Missouri River in the heart of Montana and is known as the “Electric City” because of its numerous dams and power plants. It is a place for independent, outdoor adventurers; seekers of culture and history; as well as planners of meetings looking for a true, authentic Montana experience. Great Falls provides a basecamp for a wide range of outdoor adventures and offers a haven of rich arts, including the Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art; culture; and history in a vibrant, modern community where an expansive, unspoiled, diverse landscape renews one’s spirit! Currently the greater Great Falls area is home to approximately 65,000 residents. Please feel free to visit the following sites to learn more about Great Falls.

Application Requirements: Letter of interest, three letters of recommendation, and a resume or vitae. Please email application requirements to: Cortni Harant, PGSMOA Board President


MARCH 25-28, 2020

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