Best Beginnings Advisory CouncilB B A C sun

Established in 2011, the Best Beginnings Advisory Council serves as the comprehensive early childhood advisory council and will serve as the collaborating entity for the early childhood system. The Early Childhood Services Bureau within the Department of Public Health and Human Services serves as the home for the Advisory Council.

The council includes representation from interested constituency groups, governmental agencies, the public at large, child care providers, state and local government, and tribal communities.

Best Beginnings Advisory Council Objectives

  1. Children have access to high quality early childhood programs.
  2. Families with young children are supported in their community.
  3. Children have access to a medical home and health insurance
  4. Social, emotional, and mental health needs of young children and families are supported.

Best Beginnings Advisory Council Executive Summary

The Best Beginnings Advisory Council's strategic goal is to ensure Montana has a comprehensive, coordinated, early childhood system that provides a governance structure and leads to strong collaboration in order to best meet the needs of Montana's youngest citizens.

Needs Assessment and Strategic Plan

Meeting Dates, Agendas, Minutes, and Resources

Local Coalitions

Complementing the work being done at the State level, are local Best Beginnings coalitions. There are 20 local coalitions statewide. The local coalitions are working to increase coordination across child serving systems at the grass roots level in towns, counties, and regions.

Local Coalitions: Counties-- Big Horn, Cascade, Custer, Dawson, Flathead, Gallatin, Hill, Lake, Lewis & Clark, Lincoln, Mineral, Missoula, Park, Ravalli, Richland, Roosevelt, Rosebud, Silver Bow and Yellowstone.  Reservations with coalitions: Crow, Flathead, Fort Peck, Rocky Boy's and Northern Cheyenne

Local Coalition Information

Anaconda Deer Lodge County Best Beginnings Coalition

118 East 7th Suite 2A
Anaconda, MT 59711

Serving: Deer Lodge County

Contact Phone and Email: 406 563-7972 /

Coordinator Information: 406 560-5485 /

Local Coalition Website: 

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Pintler Family Practice
  • Creative Kids Day Care
  • Anaconda Police Department
  • Anaconda-Deer Lodge Health Department
  • Tobacco Prevention Specialist - ADLC
  • Clague Law Office
  • Anaconda Pediatrics
  • Anaconda Family Resource Center
  • Family Outreach
  • Anaconda High School
  • Anaconda - Deer Lodge Head Start
  • SW Montana Neuropsychology
  • Anaconda High School; Graduation Matters
  • Country Bumpkin Child Care
  • Housing Authority
  • Tocher Toddlers
  • Bright Beginnings
  • Pauline's Day Care
  • Jeannie's Daycare
  • Play N Learn
  • The Tree House
  • A Place to Grow
  • Precious Angels
  • Care to Grow
  • Butte 4 C's
  • Perennial Doula Anaconda
  • WET & CPMP Superfund Specialist
  • Anaconda Local Development
  • Office of Public Assistance
  • Career Futures
  • Anaconda-Deer Lodge County
  • Child and Family Services
  • Lincoln Elementary
  • Fred Moodry Middle Schoool
  • Community Hospital of Anaconda; Baby Friendly Hospital
  • Anaconda Chamber of Commerce
  • Western Montana Mental Health
  • Anaconda Community Foundation
  • Anaconda Project Care
  • Tri-County Addition Services
  • Dwyer Elementary
  • Community Hospital

Big Horn County Best Beginnings Community Coalition

big horn

809 N Custer
Hardin, MT 59034

Serving: Big Horn County

Contact Phone and Email: 406 665-8720 /

Coordinator Information: 406 665-8720 /

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Big Horn County Extension Service
  • Big Horn County Public Health
  • Big Horn County Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC)
  • Big Horn Hospital Association
  • Bighorn Valley Health Center
  • Child and Family Services Division, Department of Public Health and Human Services
  • Crow Northern Cheyenne Hospital
  • Hardin Mental Health Center – South Central Montana Regional Mental Health Center
  • Hardin Parent Center, Hardin School District 17H&I
  • Hardin Kindergarten Readiness Center (School District 17H&I)
  • District 7 Human Resources Development Council (HRDC)
  • Noah’s Ark Preschool
  • Smarty Pants Preschool
  • St. Vincent Physician Network – Hardin Clinic; Support and Techniques for Empowering People (STEP) Program

Butte Community Council

101 E. Broadway
Butte MT 59701

Serving: Butte Silver Bow County

Contact Phone and Email: 406-723-4019 /

Coordinator Information: Lynette Petritz, 406-723-4019 /

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Big Brothers and Sisters
  • School District # 1
  • Butte-Silver Bow Co. Supt. of Schools
  • Southwest Montana Community Health Center
  • Butte Head Start
  • AWARE Early Head Start
  • Family Outreach
  • Legion Oasis Housing
  • Western Montana Mental Health Center
  • Butte Silver Bow Law Enforcement
  • Circle of Parents
  • Butte Exchange Club
  • Butte Literacy
  • Butte Silver Bow Health Department
  • St. James Healthcare
  • Family Child Care
  • Butte Cares
  • Montana Standard
  • Butte Silver Bow Chamber of Commerce
  • Career Futures
  • Butte Central
  • Butte Public Library
  • Butte Local Development Corp.
  • North American Indian Alliance
  • Safe Space
  • Healthy Families Network

Grounds for Change

grounds for change

210 South Winchester, 2nd Floor of VA Building
Miles City, MT  59301

Serving: Custer County

Contact Phone and Email: Tabitha Williams, 234-4765 or 852-0909,


Coordinator Information: Tabitha Williams, 234-4765 or 852-0909,

Community Partner Agencies:

  • oneHEALTH
  • AWARE, Inc.
  • DEAP

Dawson County Best Beginnings Community Council

207 W. Bell
Glendive, MT 59330

Serving: Dawson County

Contact Phone and Email: 406-377-5213 /

Coordinator Information: Timber Dempewolf, 406-377-5213 /

Community Partner Agencies: Dawson County Health Department (WIC, Home Visiting), Dawson Community College, The Nurturing Tree, Head Start, Fantastic 4’s & 5’s Preschool, Childcare Ministry, Child and Family Services, Glendive Public Library, Glendive School District, DEAP, Kiddie College, Busy Bear Preschool

Flathead Best Beginnings Community Council

PO Box 7354
Kalispell, MT 59904

Serving: Flathead County

Contact Phone and Email: Ned Cooney, 406-212-7242, 

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Abbie Shelter
  • CASA
  • Child Development Center
  • Children and Family Services Division (DPHHS)
  • Community Action Partnership
  • Community Health Center
  • Discovery Development Center
  • Evergreen Schools
  • Flathead City/County Health Department
  • Flathead Chapter - Montana Association for the Education of Young Children
  • Flathead County Superintendent of schools 
  • Flathead Valley Community College Early Childhood Center
  • ImagineIf Libraries
  • Kalispell Public Schools
  • Kalispell Regional Health
  • Medicaid Health Improvement 
  • North Valley Hospital
  • Nurturing Center
  • Northwest Montana Head Start
  • Pathways 
  • P.L.U.K. (Parents Let's Unite for Kids)
  • Sunburst Mental Health
  • Tamarack Grief Resource Center
  • United Way
  • Western Montana Mental Health
  • Whitefish School District
  • Youth Dynamics

Greater Gallatin Early Childhood Community Coalition

945 Technology Blvd. #101F
Bozeman, MT  59715

Serving: Gallatin County

Contact Phone and Email: Tyson Krinke, 406-587-2194,

Coordinator Information: Tyson Krinke, 406-587-2194,

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies: ASMSU Child Care Center; A.W.A.R.E., Inc.; Alcohol & Drug Services of Gallatin County; Belgrade Community Library; Belgrade Public Schools; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Gallatin County; Bozeman Health; Bozeman Public Library; Bozeman Public Schools; Child Care Connections; Montana State University Child Development Center; Children’s Museum of Bozeman; City of Bozeman Recreation Department; Community, Counseling, and Correctional Services, Inc.; Community Health Partners; Family Outreach; Family Promise of Gallatin Valley; Gallatin City-County Health Department; Gallatin Mental Health Center; Gallatin Valley YMCA; Gallatin Valley Food Bank; Greater Gallatin United Way; HRDC; HRDC Head Start; Montana State University College of Education, Health & Human Development; Montana Child Protective Services; Montana Children’s Trust Fund; Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services; Montana Early Childhood Project; Museum of the Rockies;; Park County Community Foundation; Park County Early Childhood Council; Thrive; Youth Dynamics

Early Childhood Investment Team


302 4th Ave.
Havre, MT 59501

Serving: Hill County

Contact Email: Marit Ita, 406-265-6794 ext. 2011

Coordinator Information: Jessie Fuzesy

Community Partner Agencies: Hill County Health Department, Bullhook Community Health Center, Havre Public Schools, Quality Life concepts, District 4 HRDC Child Care Link, Northern Montana Child Development Center, Hill County Buckle Up, United Way of Hill County, MSU-Northern and Northern Montana Health Care

Local Coalition Website

Hill County Strategic Plan

Best Beginnings Children's Partnership


Best Beginnings Children’s Partnership
C/O Lake County Health Dept.
802 Main St., Suite A
Polson, MT 59860

Best Beginnings Children’s Partnership
Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes
P.O. Box 278
Pablo, MT 59855

Serving: Flathead Reservation & Lake County

Contact Phone and Email: Lake County: Emily Colomeda; Phone: 883-7291 (direct);

Coordinator Information: Maerellen Rubley; Phone: 883-7373;

Community Partner Agencies: CSKT Social Services, CSKT Early Childhood Services; Ronan School District #30; Polson School District #23; The Nest; St. Luke Community Healthcare Network; Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center; The Nurturing Center; Sunburst Mental Health Center; Lake County Public Health Department; Fun and Fancy Free Day Care Center; Safe Harbor DV Shelter; CSKT Project LAUNCH; CSKT Tribal Education Department; Salish Kootenai College; CSKT Child Care Block Grant; CSKT Tribal Health; Child Development Center; Working Innovations; Success With Children; Dalrymple Counseling Services; Friends Forever Mentoring

Purpose Statement: The Purpose of the Best Beginnings Children’s Partnership is to improve long term school readiness outcomes for all children and families within Lake County and the Flathead Reservation.

Please contact our coordinator(s) for updated information on Strategic Planning and ongoing projects.

Early Childhood Coalition of the Greater Helena Area

early childhood coalition

75 E Lyndale Ave, Helena MT 59601

Serving: Lewis and Clark County, along with Jefferson and Broadwater counties in part

Contact Phone and Email: Trina Filan, 442-4360,

Coordinator Information: Trina Filan, 442-4360,

Community Partner Agencies:


Missoula Best Beginnings Council

200 W Broadway
Missoula, MT  59802

Serving: Missoula County

Contact Phone and Email: (406) 721-3000 x1023 /  

Coordinator Information: Anna Semple

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Missoula Forum for Children and Youth
  • Missoula County Public Schools
  • Missoula County
  • Early Head Start
  • YMCA
  • Missoula City-County Health Department
  • The Parenting Place
  • Child Care Resources
  • CTA Group
  • Missoula County Grants and Community Projects
  • Child Start Inc., Head Start
  • WORD
  • Child Development Center

Park County Pathway Early Childhood Coalition

103½ S. Main St., Suite 2
PO Box 2199
Livingston, MT 59047

Serving: Park County

Coordinator Information: Jessica Lilley, 220-2295

123 Invest In Me Best Beginnings Community Council

81 Kurtz Lane
Hamilton, MT 59840

Serving: Ravalli County

Contact Phone and Email: (406) 363-1217 ext. 111 /

Coordinator Information: Kristin Segall

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Public Libraries
  • CCR
  • CFS
  • RHS, Inc.
  • Mental Health agencies
  • Public Schools
  • Public Health
  • SAFE (local Domestic Violence prevention program)
  • PTA
  • Parents
  • Private child care providers

Roosevelt County and Fort Peck Tribes

Roosevelt County Health Department
124 Custer
Wolf Point, MT 59201

Fort Peck Tribes HPDP Wellness Program
415 13th Avenue East
Poplar, MT 59255

Serving: Roosevelt County and Fort Peck Reservation


Contact Phone: Roosevelt County Public Health (406) 653-6227, HPDP Wellness Program (406) 768-3052/3053

Coordinator Information: Roosevelt County: Michelle Barsness, Fort Peck Tribes: Donelle Buckles

Community Partner Agencies:

  • Fort Peck Tribal Executive Board
  • Roosevelt County Commissioner
  • Fort Peck Tribes Planning Department
  • Fort Peck Tribes Head Start
  • Family Violence Resource Center
  • Poplar Public Schools
  • DPPHS Wolf Point Office
  • High Line Home Programs
  • Indian Health Service Public Health Nurses
  • Fort Peck Community College
  • Fort Peck Tribes HPDP Wellness Program
  • Roosevelt County Health Department
  • Fort Peck Tribal Health
  • Fort Peck Child Care Program
  • Wolf Point Public Schools
  • Great Northern Development

Richland County Best Beginnings Coalition

1201 W Holly St, Suite #1
Sidney, MT 59270

Serving: Richland County

Contact Phone and Email: Cristin Henson 433-2207

Coordinator Information: Cristin Henson 433-2207

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies: Sidney- Richland County Library, Boys & Girls Club of Richland County, Sunrise Childcare Association, District II, Hi-Line Home Programs, Richland County Health Department.

Best Beginnings Yellowstone County

Yellowstone Coalition Logo

2173 Overland Ave

Billings, MT 59102

Serving: Yellowstone County

Contact Phone and Email: Kristin Lundgren, 406-272-8505,

Coordinator Information: Kristin Lundgren, 406-272-8505,

Local Coalition Website:

Community Partner Agencies: AWARE, Backpack Meal Program, BCCA, Billings Clinic, Billings Schools, Center for Children and Families, Department of Family Services, District 7 HRDC, Early Childhood Intervention, Family Support Network, Family Services Inc., Family Tree Center, Friendship House, Full Circle, Rimrock, SODEXHO, STEP, RiverStone Health, St. Vincent Healthcare, The Mental Health Center, United Way of Yellowstone County, Young Families Early Head Start, YWCA Billings.