Action for Eastern Montana Timeline


  • First recorded minutes of Southeastern Montana Opportunity Center serving six (6) counties
  • 650 brochures on SEMOC containing statistics on mental health and retardation
  • Fr Haverlenat first chair of Board


  • Official word from Senator Mike Mansfield of OEO funding – $19,516
  • Calvin Rice Director, Dr. Edwin Stickney, chair of Mental Health Committee
  • Three pronged Mental Health facility proposed by Dr. Karl Kraenzal & Francis McDonald Opened Mental Health centers in Glasgow, Miles City, and Glendive  Started plans for a retardation facility in Glendive (Eastmont)


  • Job Corps begins in Miles City
  • Demonstration Community Worker project funded Neighborhood Youth Corps (NYC) begins


  • General Education Degree (GED) program in all 16 counties
  • Comprehensive health grant approved by OEO
  • Three senior programs started in: Forsyth, Baker, and Glendive
  • Community outreach in Garfield, Powder River, Wibaux, Rosebud, and Prairie counties
  • Jim Bowen – Executive Director


  • SEMOC changes name to Action for Eastern Montana
  • DCC & AEM develop Adult Basic Education mobile unit
  • AEM opens Neighborhood Services Center for child day care
  • Emergency Food and Medical program begins


  • Drug & Alcohol program funded; 24 hour phone line established in referral communities
  • Neighborhood Services Center closes day care
  • 1300 GED’s issued in the first 25 years –one graduate elected president of AEM Board


  • Northeast five (5) counties demonstration program – Daniels, Sheridan, Roosevelt, Valley, and Phillips – to find out needs and problems and to provide a wide range of preventative services
  • Drug and Alcohol program: 1) 24 hour emergency call, 2) school drug program, 3) public education, 4) experimental reporting, 5) counselor in-service training, 6) Half-way houses in Miles City and Glasgow, 7) Ala-teen, Ala-non, AA groups, 8) Three (3) councils on alcoholism, one drug action committee, 9) family counseling
  • Dawson County Taxi Stamp program underway $65 stamp good for one-way ride in three (3) mile radius
  • Treasure County joins AEM making 17 counties in service area
  • Impaired drivers program starts in Wolf Point under Drug & Alcohol
  • Senior Opportunity programs Funded


  • Mobilization of Resources project, AEM to act as project sponsor, to benefit low-income Emphasis is AEM and community supporting mutual goals, contract funds to the Chamber of Commerce in Glendive for a “chamber manager”- first program of its kind in nation
  • Emergency Food & Medical program ends
  • Earl Hubley – Executive Director
  • Auditory program offers free hearing testing in area
  • Recreational Work program funded: helped with the construction of a camp in Treasure County and worked on the track facility in Miles City
  • Housing Authority begins
  • Push to bring medical doctors to eastern Montana begins
  • Alcohol & Drug program rated #3 in the nation


  • President Nixon announces phase out of OEO
  • Five Housing Authorities created – Rosebud, Roosevelt, Garfield, Fallon and Daniels
  • DCC takes over Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP)
  • State Aging Services grant to AEM to set up County Councils on Aging (CCOA) and write 5 year plan 14 CCOA’s started
  • Audiologist hired
  • 172 enrolled in Youth Corps summer work program projects: Camp Needmore – Ekalaka; playground – Plentywood; lighting of horseshoe pit – Glendive


  • AEM Designated Area Agency on Aging (AAA) – 17 CCOA’s
  • Coal impact study started
  • Phil Sullivan – Executive Director
  • Aging becomes separate department
  • Old Wet Regional Grant (OWRG) funds rent subsidy and Housing Specialist


  • Seasonal Farm worker program in District I – 107 people served Funded through OWRG
  • Winterization contract from Denver for emergency home repairs
  • Eleven Housing Authorities contract with PAC’s who screen applicants First such program in MT
  • Meals-on-Wheels started in Malta
  • Concentrated Employment and Training Act (CETA) granted to AEM, funds SPEEDY, Youth Conservation Corp and Seasonal Worker programs
  • AEM budget $1,039,746
  • Drug & Alcohol goes on its own
  • AAA services: 1) transportation, 2) nutrition, 3) information & referral, 4) home aid, 5) home health care


  • Community Coordinated Child Care (4C’s) grant approved
  • Youth developer program – 7th in Montana
  • 415 homes winterized with help from Kiwanis, Jaycees, and Green Thumb
  • AEM contracts with HUD to administer Section 8 – 60 units approved
  • 217 meals/day served t seniors in 17 counties
  • Funding for Aging buses
  • YCC hires 20 – purpose to teach environmental awareness and job training
  • Winterization expands to 17 counties
  • Pilot nutrition program started in Baker


  • AEM operating 6 programs within CETA – Youth Conservation & Community Improvement program – 96 youth enrolled
  • Older America’s Act
  • Solar greenhouse installed at Eastmont Training Center
  • Spouse Abuse Task Force set up in Miles City, Glasgow, and Glendive
  • Special Crisis Intervention Program started


  • Emergency Energy Assistance Program
  • Action for Children – program of services and advocacy introduced
  • Started Title VII Nutrition Programs to provide congregate meals


  • YCC working on nature trail at DCC, city parks in Baker, Plevna, Sidney; museum and fairgrounds in Glendive; baseball diamonds in Sidney and Crane
  • Energy Assistance program – 600 Applicants
  • AEM budget $1,500,000
  • 140 homes weatherized since July 1, 1978
  • Crisis Intervention averaging 20 calls/day – energy related
  • Youth Employment and Training enrolls 132 Summer Youth employs 100
  • Patricia Callaghan – Executive Director SCIP set up
  • Migrant Youth Program operated in 17 counties 18,000 senior meals served/month
  • Utility intervention project funded 4C’s to go independent
  • First natural gas utility rate intervention before the rate initiated, Tom Powers hired as expert witness
  • YCCIP building greenhouse at Maker high school, known as Great Jeans Project


  • Local Emergency Energy Preparedness program for people who run out of heating fuel sets up temporary shelters
  • AEM’s weatherization program tied for 1st in the State
  • Energy Crisis Association project – 859 applications
  • PSC hearings information out on MDU rate increase and customer service change
  • Food buying Club established Community Food and Nutrition program
  • Agency newsletter developed
  • Low income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP)
  • AEM helped write the grant to start the first rural home health agency in eastern Montana


  • President Reagan’s budget eliminates Community Services Admin
  • Farmers Markets in eastern Montana organized
  • AEM budget is $32 million
  • YCC sites: Hysham – Amelia Island, Miles City – Far West recreation area, Rosebud – horse trail, Wibaux – Pierre Wibaux house, Makoshika Park-picnic grounds/painting
  • SRS begins making LIEAP payments
  • Spouse abuse project transferred to local group
  • AEM contracts with Dawson County Dept. of Public Welfare to distribute food stamps
  • Personal Energy Program (PEP) & hypothermia – health program aimed to educate and prevent hypothermia – pilot project – first in Montana


  • Farmer’s market goes on its own
  • Food Coops in Glendive, Terry, Miles City, Forsyth, Fairview and Colstrip
  • Community Service Block Grant (CSBG) becomes agency funding source
  • “Lifeline” electric rate introduced
  • LIEAP – 5 counties
  • Section 8 moves to Glendive
  • Weatherization opens bids to private contractors
  • AEM started a “Cheese Distribution” program in eastern Montana using USDA Government surplus cheese and other food items
  • AEM started an “Energy Share” program


  • Burlington northern grant purchases walk-in cooler for commodities
  • Older Worker program begins with AAA-works 55+ years under JTPA
  • Phillips County Food Bank opens
  • Dawson County Food bank opens
  • Food banks in Miles City and Sidney to open soon
  • PEP project closed out
  • Section 8 housing – 165 units
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency contracts with AEM to provide emergency food and shelter
  • Jobs training Partnership Act (JTPA) replaces CETA


  • Low Income in Ekalaka raise money to refurbish public buildings for centennial
  • 365 homes weatherized for year
  • 1039 LIEAP applications
  • AEM organizes Needy Family Christmas project in Glendive


  • AEM funds Glendive Lawn Care Service to help provide lawn care to needy households
  • Phillips County starts low-income house painting
  • Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Miles City/Glendive accepted by BB/BS of America
  • MDU rate case intervention
  • UPS designates AEM as chartable payroll deduction recipient


  • Section 8 – 204 units
  • Big Brothers/Big Sisters becomes delegate agency under AEM, hires caseworker
  • Veterans Employment & training program funded
  • Richland County organizes client emergencies project known as Friends Helping Friends
  • Phillips County holds turkey raffle for funds for food bank and Energy Share and conducts Christmas Clothes for Kids project


  • Phillips County hosts Commodity Cook-off and compiles recipes
  • AEM administers Emergency Food and Shelter money (FEMA) for 17 counties
  • Federal guidelines for Summer Youth Employment & Training programs (SYETP) implements literacy assessment in math and reading and provides tutoring as needed
  • Circle Senior Center opens, serving congregate meals
  • MDU works with Aging Office to start “gate keeper” program watching homes for unusual activity in partnership with Neighborhood Watch


  • $18,000 Homeless grant expands available services
  • Wibaux Food Bank opens with freezer purchase and shelving Montana Food Bank Network, housed at AEM, with in-kind office support, distributes over $3,000 worth of products to 17 counties
  • OPI awards AEM a homeless grant
  • AEM receives service award from Legacy Legislature
  • Glendive’s Bread for the World Bazaar boosts client emergency fund
  • Older Americans Act mandates ombudsman service from Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) and provides certified long-term care ombudsman training
  • AEM moves to 111 West Bell


  • Miles City and Malta obtain free swimming lessons for low-income children
  • AAA Director’s Association votes to create Office on Aging under Governor’s office
  • the millionth meal in Montana is served by congregate meal program on May 17th
  • Poplar’s new Life mission feeds an average of 38 for lunch, houses 17-23 per night, feeding them breakfast and dinner
  • Computerized client tracking system is established
  • Section 8 receives 5 disabled certificates
  • AEM started a Veteran’s Employment & Training


  • Counselor based in Glasgow operated an E&T Displaced Homemaker program in the 5 northern counties
  • Food stamp outreach contracted with AAA’s information & referral technicians
  • David Bradley, CCA lobbyist in Washington DC bikes through Eastern Montana publicizing community action agencies and their efforts
  • AEM for a Day held in Malta June 21st
  • E&T awarded incentive grant for exemplary performance
  • AEM brought a Displaced Homemakers program as part of Employment & Training


  • AEM is designated lead agency in Richland, Roosevelt, and Valley counties for the Welfare Reform program JOBS
  • Summer Food Service program grant funded through OPI provides lunch for children 0-18 years old in Glendive
  • “Threshold” a self-sufficiency program, will help families move off welfare programs through case management
  • Long distance learning pilot project for small business development using PBS will begin at test sites in Malta, Glasgow, Sidney, Glendive, and Miles City
  • AEM celebrates 25 years of service to low-income person in eastern Montana with the following programs: weatherization, Section 8 Rental Assistance, Fuel Assistance, Area Agency on Aging, Planning, Employment & Training, Emergency Services


  • 4,682 meals served at Dawson County Summer Food Service Program
  • AEM awarded head Start in Valley and Phillips Counties
  • AEM awarded SEEM (Supported Employment for Eastern Montana) grant
  • AEM started Enterprise Opportunities to help small business owners receive Micro-business loans and as well as technical assistance
  • AAA awarded 3 new grants: project Care, Health promotion & ICA
  • Al Kaschube resigns as governing Board chair


  • Head Start begins in Glasgow and Malta
  • Duane Lutnes becomes Governing Board Chair
  • Bev McIntyre retires after 27 years as Office Manager
  • Matthew’s house opens in Sidney-Shelter for domestic violence and abuse
  • AEM awarded micro Business Development Loan Program (MBDC)
  • AAA Information & Referral changes to Information & Assistance
  • Head Start expands to Dawson County. Renovation of the Little Red School House for Head Start
  • LIEAP administers program in 17 counties
  • AEM fiscal agent for marketing alliance


  • Head Start classes begin in Dawson County
  • Home based program expands in Phillips County
  • AEM started regional access cooperative for assistive technology
  • AEM approved as HUD certified Housing Counseling Agency
  • Weatherization staff honored at Region 8 conference
  • Summer Food program begins in Poplar
  • Aging starts Home Chore program in McCone County
  • Sheridan County hires County Coordinator on Aging
  • Head Start expands home based program in Valley County
  • Governing Board of Directors expands from 9 to 12, adding Minority representative, Head Start representative and Local office at-large
  • Allen Rustad elected Board Chair
  • Aging receives grant to become a Regional Access Cooperative for Assistive Technology to help people with disabilities


  • School-to-Work program begins (in 5 counties) in cooperation with the local schools
  • Patty Callaghan announces retirement after over 20 years of service
  • AEM takes over Miles City Head Start
  • Commodity program comes to an end


  • SRS becomes a part of the “super” Department after total reorganization of the State Social Service Programs – Montana Department of Public Health & human Services
  • AEM provided $9,000 from the Montana Food Bank Network to distribute food to the local eastern Montana Food Banks
  • AEM loses the Valley/Phillips JOBS program
  • Summer Feeding program moves to Miles City in cooperation with the Head Start program
  • AEM moves to 100 Fir St in Forest Park
  • AEM receives assistance from the Rural Community Assistance Corp for first Affordable Housing project in Glendive


  • AEM receives funding for Victim/Witness program to advocate for Victims and Witness of violent crimes in 3 counties (Valley, Phillips, and Roosevelt)
  • AEM no longer provides the JOBS program
  • Area Agency on Aging is granted $3,432 for Lien Law assistance
  • Provided assistance to the Fallon County Commissioners for an Elderly Housing facility
  • AEM searched for a new facility Board of Directors decided to build a new building Moved to temporary building in the Kmart Mall while waiting for the building to be built, October 31st, we moved into the new building
  • Total AEM budget was $3,696,294


  • Weatherization assumes the Northern Cheyenne program
  • AEM gives the School-to-Work project to the local schools
  • The Summer Feeding programs were given to local agencies to administer


  • Weatherization program receives funding for the Residential Energy Assistance Challenge
  • Section 8 changes to all vouchers
  • Energy Share and Weatherization are funded by the Universal Systems Benefit charges from local vendors
  • AEM starts an Endowment fund through the Montana Community Foundation
  • The Welfare-to-Work program is funded to assist long time-public assistance families obtain and maintain employment
  • Section 8 administers 346 units


  • AEM started a Senior Companion program


  • AEM constructed Savage Sunrise Manor assisted living complex


  • AEM started a Medicare Part D counseling program in eastern Montana


  • AEM helped Phillips County Food Bank organize as a 501c3
  • Partnered with Dawson County Economic Development Council to construct Makoshika Estates


  • AEM started a transportation program (using Stimulus Funding) to help low-income individuals repair vehicles, purchase fuel to get to work or medical appointments, or purchase public transportation services
  • AEM started a dental, vision or hearing assistance program to help low-income individuals receive free or reduced medical care