Kelli Hess

This community has earned a reputation as a leader in sustainability and responsible citizenship, not only across the state but across the nation and beyond. What allows this modest city to accomplish programs like the Zero by Fifty zero-waste plan or keep nearly a million tons of waste out of the landfill? I believe it is our robust, thriving citizenry who accept responsibility for the planet, people and economy.

Through Home ReSource, Western Montana’s Community Sustainability Center and many other nonprofits, people across our region come together to work for a just, vibrant and sustainable community.

I am proud to announce that I have accepted the position as Home ReSource’s Executive Director. I look forward to joining the team and wide community of Home ReSource supporters. Together, we will build on the impactful work of those who served before me — the volunteers and staff who built this organization from the dream of two University of Montana students to the thriving hub it is today.

As a born and raised Montanan and long-time Missoulian, I’ve been fortunate to have served our community through the Missoula Food Bank & Community Center and the Missoula Family YMCA. I am thrilled to lead the effort to realize our shared vision as a community. We see a sustainable future for Western Montana, where today’s needs are met in ways that preserve tomorrow’s possibilities and inspire our children’s futures.

We are accelerating the transition to a thriving and sustainable community by creating systems that bend the linear take-make-waste economy. As we bend the line, we are creating a circular, inclusive economy where resources are reduced, reused, repaired, repurposed and recycled. In doing so, we decrease greenhouse gasses and demand on our natural resources, while generating opportunities for meaningful work. Planet, People, Economy.

I look forward to exploring circular economy concepts with you in the coming months and am proud to help bring this approach and all it represents into our collective consciousness. But ask your fifth-grader, or any child who’s become a zero waste ambassador through Home ResSource’s ZWAP! program. These kids easily understand the “re” values embedded in the circular economy.

Through ZWAP!, our Fix-it Clinics, zero waste systems initiatives, youth and adult work programs, and of course our largest program, the building materials reuse store, Home ReSource leads the sustainability effort through partnerships with many other nonprofit and public organizations. Together, we continue to innovate. We can be proud to be on the cutting edge of systems and activities that protect our planet while honoring the value of each individual person and our community as a whole.

I would love to see you at our event on Friday, October 21: Celebrating ReUse, Building Community Auction. Tickets are available here. If not there, rest assured, you’ll hear from me again as we, together, achieve our vision of a promising tomorrow.

Kelli Hess is the executive director at Home ReSource

Sustainability Happenings

Here we offer ideas about sustainable ways to stay involved in our community. If you like these offerings, consider signing up for Climate Smart’s eNewsletter here. And sign up for the Home ReSource eNews via their homepage here.

Oct 18  — The US Clean Water Act is 50 years old today. A new Clean Water Act Owner’s Manual is available here.

Oct 21  — Home Resource annual FUNdraiser/banquet/auction. Celebrate & support Missoula’s community sustainability center. Fun, food, friends, music. 5:30-10 pm at Missoula Fairgrounds.  More info here. 

Oct 22  — Climate Ride Day of Action in Missoula. FUNdraiser. Info & sign up here (will need to scroll down at that site for info).