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GFDA Top 16 5/9/2016

Here's the GFDA Top 10 for this week, celebrating great things happening to move Great Falls Forward. Welcome home to the 219th Red Horse members back from deployment!


1) The Farran Group announced a major 216-unit upscale apartment home development to be constructed on the west side of Great Falls. Similar to the successful Talus Apartment Homes, the new site will include nine 24-unit buildings, along with a club house with fitness center, pool and community space. Construction is scheduled to start this summer. This is another big step forward for Great Falls! More details in Tribune story.

2) Networked and exhibited at the Montana State Chamber's Montana Manufacturing & International Trade Day, combined with the SBA State Awards luncheon in Missoula.

3) Congratulations to Elkin Family Dentistry PC for the opening of their new Great Falls building in December! The newly constructed building is located on Bobcat Way, so drive by and take a look at the beautiful structure. We're proud to have helped make this possible with a long-term SBA 504 loan commitment.

4) Montana is a beautiful place for a lifestyle change, just ask Tim and La Rue Roberts of Fort Benton, MT. They recently move from Utah to Fort Benton after purchasing Benton RV Parks and Campground. The Roberts wanted to get away from the corporate world and have started off the summer with a bang. They enjoy getting to know and talk to the travelers coming through their park. Congratulation to the Roberts for being able to realize a dream. Another deal made possible with an SBA 504 loan.

5) The Great Falls City Commission allocated $40,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds to GFDA for loan capital. If you know of a business start-up or expansion, or real estate development, that can't get off the ground because there's a financing gap, give us a call, email, text, signal flag, pony express -- just let us know, we might be able to help.

6) The City Commission also approved using tax increment financing to bring fiber optic cable into the first phase of the Great Bear Innovation Park, just north of ADF.

7) Join the Great Falls Area Chamber to celebrate the opening of the new Fresenius Great Falls Clinic Dialysis Center this Wednesday, May 11, 5-7 PM, 1724 26th Street South.

8) The Hotel Arvon, C.M. Russell Museum, and Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art are being recognized with Preservation Awards by the Great Falls-Cascade County Historic Preservation Advisory Commission. The awards will be presented at a public reception on May 26, 5:30-7:00 PM in the Missouri Room of the Great Falls Civic Center.

9) Join us for a workshop covering the legal responsibilities and best practices for developing and sustaining a successful board of directors. Board Legal Responsibilities; Board-Staff Teams; Board Structure; Better Board Meetings and Committees; Recruitment and Orientation; and Board Roles in Fundraising. Thursday, May 26, 2:30-4:30 PM, Great Falls College MSU, Heritage Hall. This workshop is free to participants; sponsored by GFDA and High Plains Financial; taught by the Montana Nonprofit Association. A reception will follow. Register at

10) Great Falls residential combined water/sewer rates are the lowest of the 7 major Montana cities, even after the new rate increase the City just adopted to pay for improvements to the systems. Great Falls rates are 25% lower than the average of the other 6 cities, a savings of almost $20/month. Commercial rates are also lowest in Great Falls; 24% less than the average of the other 6 Montana cities.


A shout out to Brad Livingston of the Great Falls Area Chamber of Commerce for pulling together a team working to create a new relocation package to help companies pitch Great Falls to prospective employees!


See you this Friday, 9 AM at Darkhorse Banquet Hall under the Celtic Cowboy for the Great Falls Downtown Showcase (see details below). Being your developer and entrepreneurial friends! Untame your entrepreneurial spirit!


Connect with me on LinkedIn to connect with other Great Falls business and community leaders.


To the Great Falls Clinic Hospital on being named one of America's 100 Best Hospitals for Patient Experience by the Women's Choice Award.


To new graduates of the University of Great Falls and Great Falls College MSU!


To Will Weaver, dean and CEO of Great Falls College MSU from 1985 to 2001, on being awarded an honorary doctorate by Montana State University!

Quote of the Week

"I'm convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance."

Steve Jobs

Great Job Opportunities

GFDA has three great job openings for Loan Portfolio Manager, Business Development Leader, and Loan Officer. Please pass the word to friends and colleagues. Help us find some amazing new team members! GFDA is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Great Falls Tourism Seeks Sales Manager

Passionate, creative, self-motivated, energetic Great Falls Montana Champion sought to join our forward-thinking, hardworking and resourceful tourism team as a Sales Manager. This position is relied on to be productive, detailed, and focused on building relationships that will result in conference, meetings, events and group commitments to the Great Falls Montana market. This position is expected to solicit planners and organizers of meetings, conventions, trade shows, seminars, and training sessions in a variety of industry sectors; submit leads to area hotels; assist in convention follow up and services; research and contact local individuals who are members of, or are affiliated with national or regional organizations, to gain information on and garner support of bidding for future meetings; prepare and present formal bid presentations to organizations; represent Great Falls, Montana at trade shows to distribute information to future visitors; develop and maintain close working relationship with all hotel/motel/public facilities management; sales and services personnel. Great Falls Montana Tourism is looking for the right team member who demonstrates taking initiative, adding value, and solving problems. Anticipated salary $40,000 with health insurance stipend. EOE. Apply to Rebecca Engum, with a cover letter and resume.


Great Falls AgriTech Park

Manufacturers -- 20 or 31.5 acre, rail-served heavy industrial lot in Great Falls AgriTech Park ready for immediate construction start! Gas, electric, water, sewer, fiber, and rail all to your lot line for $30,000/acre. Join Pacific Steel & Recycling, Montana Specialty Mills, Helena Chemical, and Ruedebusch Development in this new industrial park. Contact Brett Doney at 1-406-750-2119 or

Upcoming Events

Employers looking for great workers can sign up for the Job Fair that will be part of the 2016 State Disability Employability Conference in Great Falls on May 11-13 at the Holiday Inn. The Job Fair will be held on May 12. More info at or contact Dave Ketelholn at the Job Service, 1-406-791-5857 or


Want to develop the next hot spot in Great Falls? Is your project the next Celtic Cowboy, Electric City Coffee or Lofts@503? You should be at the 2016 Downtown Showcase, Friday May 13th, 9:00 AM in the Darkhorse Hall of the downtown Arvon Block. Get project ideas and partners while mingling with developers, building, owners, and resource groups. Open your eyes to opportunity! Contact Lillian Sunwall to learn more or RSVP, 406-771-9024, or


Attention Non-Profits Board members! Great Falls Development Authority and High Plains Financial welcome our non-profit colleagues and directors to join us for a free Best Practices of Non-profit Boards workshop presented by the Montana Nonprofit Association. May 26 from 2:30-4:30 PM with a reception to follow. Please RSVP here Contact Jolene Schalper with any questions, 406-750-4481,


GFDA and partners will host a special Workforce Recruitment Summit the morning of Wednesday, June 29th, prior to our Investors Annual Meeting lunch. The Summit will present ideas of what other communities in Montana and across the country are doing to attract workforce to relocate to their cities. Mark your calendar and plan to join us for this important, lively discussion. We've confirmed some great speakers for the event.



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Great Falls, MT 59401
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Great Falls, MT 59403