Anna-Margaret Goldman, M.A., Ph.D., recently joined the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities as the Director of MonTECH. Anna-Margaret graduated from Miami University of Ohio in Organizational Communication. Following college, she served as an AmeriCorps VISTA and continued her work as a Youth Development Coordinator for The Flagship Program in Missoula, Montana. Anna-Margaret received her Master’s degree and her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration at The University of Alabama. During this time, she worked for the International Journal of Researcher Development and with the Center of Sustainable Service and Volunteerism to help run a school-based mentoring program. She is excited to bring her background in developing educational programs and trainings, partnering with community organizations, and grant writing/management to the assistive technology community. She enjoys hiking, running, skiing, and spending time with her husband and dog in her free time.
Julie Doerner, M.S., CCC-SLP, is the Clinical Coordinator for the Montana Assistive Technology Program (MATP) in Missoula. Julie has a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education, and a Master’s of Science in Speech Language Pathology. Prior experience includes teaching preschool, working as a para-educator, and serving as a speech language pathologist in many different settings (schools, rehabilitation centers, home health, hospice, and private practice). Julie relies on a wealth of knowledge, experience, and continual research to find the right assistive technology to meet a client’s needs. Julie also serves as an adjunct instructor for the University of Montana’s Communicative Science and Disorders Department. A native of North Dakota, Julie is now the quintessential Montanan who enjoys hunting and traveling. A self-professed ski bum, in her downtime you are most likely to find her on the ski hill.
Claire Adam, DPT, joined the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities in November, 2016, as the Clinical Coordinator for the Montana Adaptive Equipment Program (MAEP). Claire is originally from Seattle and has a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from the University of Washington. As a physical therapist, Claire has worked primarily with pediatric clients in both school and outpatient settings in Washington, Idaho, and Montana. She is looking forward to using her experience as a physical therapist to help people find the best adaptive equipment to meet their needs. She is happy to be in Missoula and enjoys outdoor activities, especially hiking, backpacking, and cross-country skiing. She also enjoys swimming, yoga, reading, and going on adventures with her husband.
Marlena Lanini, MOT, P.E., OTR/L, joined MonTECH in October of 2016 as the Eastern Clinical Coordinator for MonTECH’s new office in Billings. Marlena received a Master’s of Occupational Therapy from Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins, CO. During this time, she worked for CSU’s Assistive Technology Resource Center, where she developed a love for helping connect people with the right technology. Marlena subsequently served as an occupational therapist in school districts in Colorado and Nevada. Prior to training as an occupational therapist, Marlena graduated from Northwestern University in Environmental Engineering and worked as a consulting engineer for ten years. Marlena is a Billings native and is excited to return to Montana. She enjoys camping, running, gardening, and spending time with her family.
Mindy Renfro, PT, Ph.D., DPT, is a research scientist for the University of Montana’s Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities. She works with MonTECH on initiatives related to healthy aging, fall prevention, aging-in-place, telehealth, and assistive technology. She is the Montana faculty for the interdisciplinary Utah Regional LEND program working to ready health care providers, educators, and families to work effectively with and advocate for children with disabilities. Her current research interests are in evidence-based fall prevention programs for older adults and special populations, including adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities. She is the Principle Investigator for Wheels Across Montana, providing adaptive trikes to people with disabilities through the generous funding of the Dana & Christopher Reeve Foundation. Mindy enjoys family time outdoors in Montana whenever possible with her husband, Tim, their 5 adult children and 4 grandchildren.
Dave Gentry, B.S., is MonTECH’s Assistive Technology Resource Coordinator and has been with MonTECH since March, 2014. He manages the shipping and receiving of MonTECH items. He is also an expert in the use of low-vision equipment and regularly demonstrates that equipment. Dave has a Bachelor of Science in Social Science from Frostburg State University in Maryland. He has had a long career in human services, working with the Housing Authority, WORD, Summit Independent Living, and in the Senior and Long-term Care Division for the state of Montana. Dave likes working with people with disabilities, playing a part in improving their quality of life. In his off-time, Dave is a classic-car enthusiast. His favorite completed project is a beautiful ‘57 Chevy two-door, hardtop Bel Air, which he rebuilt using parts from 15 different cars. Dave also enjoys live music and traveling the globe.
Scott Thomas, B.S., joined MonTECH in June, 2016, as the Social Media Coordinator. He assists MonTECH in multiple areas, including writing blog entries, assisting with social media management, and sharing his personal experiences with eye gaze technology and home environmental controls. Scott earned a degree in Business Finance from Montana State University. His previous work was as a sales executive for PayneWest Insurance. He lives with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), and uses an eye-operated computer for work and communication. He is passionate about helping others learn about and benefit from assistive technologies, as he has personally benefited. Scott has traveled extensively in the United States, Mexico, and Ireland. He enjoys time outdoors, reading, and spending time with his partner and dog.
Shawna Hanson, B.A., is the Media Outreach Coordinator for MonTECH. With degrees in journalism and English, and seven years working in academic publishing, she is pleased to promote MonTECH through presentations, print, and social media. Her unorthodox career path has permitted her to work with people facing a wide range of challenges: those working toward recovery after serious accidents or stroke, those who are aging, and people who are living with mental illness. As the mother of a son who is nonverbal with severe autism, she has experienced first-hand the powerful difference assistive technology can make in the life of a family. Her experience, both at home and in the workplace, makes her an enthusiastic supporter of MonTECH. When not thinking, writing, or talking about MonTECH, Shawna is engaged in the daily struggle not to be outwitted or outplayed by her teenaged sons. She is also an avid reader and dog-mom to her bulldog, Lu.
Charles “Chuck” Taylor is a warehouse manager for the MAEP warehouse and has been with MonTECH since January, 2015. His duties include shipping and receiving equipment for the loan program, along with managing the inventory both on the website and in the warehouse. Chuck is a senior at the University of Montana and will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Biology in spring 2017. Chuck enjoys enriching the lives of the people who utilize the MonTECH programs and loves to help out in any way he can. He hopes one day to work for a state or federal agency as a wildlife biologist and return to school to pursue his Master’s and/or Ph.D. in Wildlife Biology. When not working, Chuck enjoys fishing, hunting, camping, backpacking, and most other outdoor activities. He also loves music and going to concerts, and baseball is his true undying passion. “If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be.” -Yogi Berra
Bobby Dutreix, B.A., provides technical support to the MonTECH team. He checks in, maintains, and updates equipment. When new devices are purchased, Bobby learns the device and how it is used so that he can share the information with the MonTECH team and the consumers who access the MATP program. He also helps with day-to-day operations and customer service, providing expert feedback during demonstrations and evaluations involving high-tech equipment. If your visit to MonTECH involves computer use or computer access, there is a good chance Bobby will be involved. He is currently a senior at the University of Montana pursuing a degree in Management Information Systems. As a transplant to Montana from Texas, Bobby enjoys travelling, backpacking, hiking, and generally exploring all Montana has to offer.
Kailey Gaustad joined MonTECH in December, 2015. She first gained experience with the MAEP program and the mobility and positioning equipment that we offer. Kailey then transitioned to the Wheels Across Montana program (WAM), which loans adaptive trikes of many sizes and styles to Montanans with disabilities at no cost. Currently, Kailey works with MATP, interacting with those who check out MonTECH’s assistive technology, providing excellent customer service, maintaining equipment, and tracking inventory. Her favorite role at MonTECH is interacting with the public at events; with her warm, friendly personality, she is a wonderful ‘face of MonTECH’ at these events. She will be graduating in May, and plans to move to Seattle later in the summer for her new career in accounting. She enjoys spending time with her dog and traveling for both work and pleasure.
Nathan Hensley is a warehouse manager for MonTECH, a position he has held since September, 2016. He is responsible for the maintenance, cleaning, delivery, shipping, and receipt of equipment checked out by MAEP consumers. Nathan is a native of Big Timber, Montana. In Big Timber, he worked at the Pioneer Medical Center. His experience with patients in the critical access hospital/nursing home exposed him to a wide variety of challenges and disabilities people live with every day. That experience helps him provide excellent customer service to the people who access MAEP. Nathan is currently pursuing a degree in Criminology at the University of Montana. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, skiing, and playing video games.
Megan Smisek joined MonTECH in March of 2017 as a student worker for MonTECH’s new office in Billings. She will assist MonTECH with various projects in the Billings office and day-to-day operations. Megan is currently a graduate student in the Master of Occupational Therapy Program at the University of Mary in Billings, MT. Prior to moving to Montana, Megan earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Movement Science from Winona State University. Megan is originally from Minnesota, and is excited to be in Billings pursuing her degree and living in a new place! She enjoys spending time with family and friends at the cabin, water sports on the lake, and reading whenever time allows!