About Commissioner Curtiss
Growing up on the family farm in the Swan Valley, the values of working hard and working together were instilled in Jean at a young age. She grew up in a family of strong, involved women. Her grandmother was born in Bannock and educated as a teacher. She served on the Swan Valley School board for 16 years. She was instrumental in getting Seeley-Swan High School funded and built. Prior to its opening in 1964, students in the Swan had the longest bus ride in the United States – 180 miles per day. Jean’s mother served on the first board of directors for the Seeley-Ovando-Swan Health Center, providing access to health care in the valley. Curtiss learned by example to get involved and get things done to improve your community.
Curtiss served in leadership roles at the local, state and national level in PTA. She served on the board for the Montana PTA for 12 years. Curtiss was President/CEO for 4 years during which time she also served on the board of the National PTA. She produced and edited a set of training videos that were used across the state by local PTAs.
Serving as Missoula County Commissioner for the past 17 years, Curtiss has demonstrated common sense leadership for the county. While serving on 10 boards and/or committees may seem overwhelming, she is fully engaged in the issues of each one – ranging from underage substance abuse to providing services to help seniors live a life of dignity in their own homes as long as possible. As a leader in economic development in the region, Curtiss has worked tirelessly to bring new jobs to Missoula County. First, serving as the President of BitterRoot Economic Development District, BREDD, and then as a founding member of the Missoula Economic Partnership.
As a Missoula County Commissioner, Curtiss’ signature stewardship and conservation efforts demonstrate the effectiveness of blending common sense leadership and strong partnerships to get things done for the county.
While the Milltown Dam has been gone for some time, this summer the Milltown State Park will open at the confluence of the Blackfoot and Clark Fork Rivers. The project to replace the I-90 bridges that cross the Blackfoot will also begin this summer achieving the community goal of having the piers out of the river making is safer for the public.
The old Bonner mill site continues to thrive and has added more manufacturing, a brewery and a beautiful amphitheater. Over 400 people work at the mill site again.
The 2006 Open Space Bond has protected 30,000 acres of private lands with voluntary conservation easements to protect working farms and ranches, timberlands, water quality and critical habitat. We even bought a farm for Garden City Harvest to have a permanent home on River Road.
13 mine reclamation projects in the 9 Mile Valley focused over $2.4 million cleaning up toxic sites and removing tailings to allow streams to reconnect and fish to get back to their spawning grounds.
The Missoula to Lolo Trail is complete and 5,000 people per month have been recorded walking and biking this new route.
Voters approved a $42 million bond to build Fort Missoula Regional Park, invest in city park playgrounds and connecting trails throughout the county. Last fall, Missoula was able to host the Boys and Girls State High School Soccer Tournaments for the first time. This spring the new softball complex will open to the public.
Curtiss has proven that developing relationships, forming partnerships is the best way to get things done for Missoula County families. She works to connect the dots and look for solutions.
Curtiss is married to Brad Curtiss, who retired from Blackfoot Telephone after 30 years of service. She has three children, Shane, Pamela, and Kevin, a daughter-in-law Sarah and three wonderful granddaughters Addison, Lilly and Macie.