Chris Pope is a Bozeman business and community leader who is running as a Democrat for State House District 65 to improve the quality of life for working Montanans and their families.
Chris is an advocate for a strong, transparent and efficient state government, and is committed to finding practical solutions to critical issues facing residents and taxpayers working across the aisle to break down the political polarity that has recently undermined the effectiveness of state leadership.
Chris believes that Montana is well-positioned to grow its agricultural, tourism and high-tech industries, with an objective of creating high-quality, well-paying jobs and expanding markets for value-added Montana goods and services. An essential component of Montana’s future economic success is the continued stewardship of Montana’s environment and wildlife, as is a robust public education system and affordable health care.
Chris enters his third run for public office with extensive private sector experience, not to mention volunteer service in the non-profit and public sectors.
During the 64th Legislature, Chris was an advocate for clean energy, investment in critical state infrastructure, and expanded opportunity for students with disabilities. He served on the Business and Labor, Local Government, and Federal Relations, Energy and Telecommunications committees.
Chris and his wife, Maddy, relocated to Bozeman in 1991 from Washington, DC, where Chris worked in the high-tech energy sector as a marketing manager for Amoco Corporation’s solar electric energy subsidiary. Upon arriving in Bozeman, Chris and Maddy started The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company, an educational toy store located on Main Street in Bozeman’s historic business district. The Popes sold the business in 2005, after growing the business to four store locations.
Chris additionally holds a Certified Commercial Investment Member [CCIM] designation as a licensed commercial real estate agent with NAI Landmark in Bozeman, where he has worked for 10 years.
Chris is active in service to the Bozeman community, having served on various City advisory groups during the 15-year renovation of the Historic Downtown Business District. He chaired the Bozeman Parking Commission for 12 years, during which time the City successfully built a $12 million parking facility downtown. He was presented with the city’s Life is Downtown achievement award in 2011.
Chris has served on the boards of Eagle Mount, the Yellowstone Business Partnership, and is currently Board Treasurer for the Montana Conservation Corps. He is a 17-year member of the Bozeman Noon Rotary.
Chris has a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish Literature from the University of Oregon, Eugene, OR , and a Masters in Public and Private Management from the School of Management, Yale University, New Haven, CT .
Chris is 65 years old, and lives with his wife, Maddy, in Bozeman. They have two adult-age children, Jessie and Ben.
The vitality and health of our communities depends upon a robust, entrepreneurial and growing economy capable of delivering well-paying jobs and a sense of opportunity for all Montanans. I have worked for 20 years in Montana-based small business. I know what businesses need to thrive and I will work hard to create jobs and economic opportunity in House District 65 and across the Treasure State.
State government plays a critical role in supporting the Montana business community – preparing a future workforce, assisting with new market development, and helping create conditions for entrepreneurial activity in the state. Montana needs to increase its share of new and emerging markets, and State government must do its part to help businesses transition to best practices of sustainability, technology transfer and industry collaboration.
Montana is blessed with an abundance of natural beauty – a core contributor to our remarkable quality of life. Clean air and water, world-class wildlife and wild lands, pristine rivers, bountiful parks and public lands, are also an essential part of Montana’s modern economy. I will fight for access to public lands, clean air and water, a serious pragmatic approach to addressing climate change, and leadership in energy conservation and renewable energy development – to ensure that Montana continues to be that special place to live, work and recreate.
I believe affordable healthcare for all Montanans is an essential goal, and a core value of our future quality of life here in the Treasure State. A healthy and productive workforce is an immediate outcome. But, it’s also just a beginning to a vision of Healthy Communities: the State needs to move swiftly to improve mental health services, to reduce health care costs to seniors, to encourage active lifestyles in our communities, and to take meaningful steps to end substance abuse that is epidemic across our state, most tragically among our youth.
Public education is a cherished institution in the Treasure State – but it demands our constant attention to ensure relevance and achievement in a rapidly changing world. Our kids need to graduate with an improved sense of self, with experience in service and volunteerism, skilled in the new technologies, as citizens ready to assume responsibility in their community and economy. I will advocate for proper funding, merit-based management, and programmatic innovation to promote excellence in our K-12 and higher-ed schools. And, as an extension to excellence in formal education, I will advocate for opportunities for our students to volunteer and to give back to their community – a Montana version of the 21st Century Conservation Corps.
I am a proponent for the careful, timely reinvestment in our state’s critical infrastructure – whether that be for roads and bridges, community water and sewer systems, or public energy and communications infrastructure. The prudent use of public finance to preserve and maintain our essential public assets is key to a healthy and functioning economy, and to our quality of life. I would expressly include the renovation of the iconic Romney Hall on Montana State University’s campus in the conversation of infrastructure investment. We Montanans owe a debt of gratitude to our state University system, which provides a world-class educational path for our students, and which is a significant contributor to new and emerging technology and economic growth. Re-investing in our state universities is a win-win, and should be a high priority in our state budget process.
Please help me forward the vision for a better Montana by contributing to my campaign.
If you are interested in becoming involved in our efforts please fill out the contact information and let us know how you would like to be involved by checking all the volunteering options that apply. Thank you for your support.
HD 65 Candidate, Democrat
Treasurer, P.O.BOX 6546
Bozeman, MT 59771