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Bonus Episode: Stories for Action, "Strengthening Community in a Changing Montana"


"Strengthening Community in a Changing Montana" originally aired on Stories for Action podcast, October 23, 2021.

Stories for Action's mission is to share the human connection around a thriving environment and strong communities. Join us for conversations with people taking bold steps, bridging divides, and creating calls to actions, helping you find your role in creating a healthy world for all. 


Today’s episode looks at changes and pressures being felt in Montana communities, and the importance of community involvement in navigating how this change can occur in a sustainable way. Changes are nothing new for Montana communities, but as you listen to residents from around the state, they know that the changes currently taking place, are a bit more ramped up than before. Trends of folks with higher, out-of-state incomes, moving into Montana have been on the rise for decades, but with the pandemic, these trends are amplified. As housing prices skyrocket, working class local residents are unable to afford to stay, making many towns, large and small, feel pressures in their own sustainability.


We will hear from Pat Baltzley of Gardiner, MT, who joined other community members to be proactive with the felt pressures of rapid growth, we will speak with Hermina Harold, Executive Director of Trust Montana, about the community land trust model as a way of ensuring long-term, housing and farmland affordability, and finally we will hear from the Program Leader of MSU Extension’s Community Development Program, Tara Mastel, who is working on a different type of change occurring in Montana’s towns and who explains why we should rethink the narrative of “rural decline”.



Successful Gardiner:

Trust Montana:
MSU Extension Community Development Program:
Reimagining Rural Series:
Future West 
Shirley Sherrod & the Center for Community Land Trust Innovation


Stories for Action: Facebook & Instagram @Storiesforaction Twitter: @Stories4Action


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