Bitterroot Resilience Forum

On October 13 and 18, 2023 more than 75 participants gathered at Hamilton City Hall to give their ideas and concerns on meeting the challenge of climate change in our valley.
On this page you will find video documentation of the the forum event and other resources which we have developed to increase resilience in the Bitterroot Valley.

Download These Resources!

Click here to download the Bitterroot Valley Climate Resilience Resource Guide distributed at the forum.









Click here to download the report from the Forum.

Click Here to download an executive summary .pdf of the slides summarizing the forum results presented on October 18th

The Bitteroot Valley in a Changing Climate
Dr. Bruce Maxwell, an Montana State University soil scientist and a co-author of the Montana Climate Assessment gave the keynote presentation.

What Happened at the Friday Forum?  Going Forward from Here?
BCAG Chair Peter Reynolds presents a summary of the October 13 forum and sets up the breakout groups at the October 18 forum.

The Bitterroot Resilience Forum included:

  • An expert presentation to increase understanding of our community’s vulnerabilities to anticipated climate changes
  • Resilience planning through facilitated group discussion and deliberation
  • Defining our own local action strategies to adapt to and mitigate climate impacts
  • Exploring a spectrUM science exhibit on climate impacts
  • Intergenerational dialogue
  • Ongoing follow-up planning for resilience preparedness

Forum Topics

  • Drought & Flooding
  • Smoke & Fire
  • Extreme Heat



Hamilton City Hall
223 S 2nd Street

Friday Oct. 13, 2023 10-2pm 

Resilience Day

Dr. Bruce Maxwell presented on forum topics followed by facilitated breakout groups for discussion. Following lunch, the forum concluded with a panel comprised of Charlie Harris, Trout Unlimted board member; Erik Hoover of Ravalli County Emergency Response; Laura Jackson, former USFS employee and BCAG Secretary, and Dr. Bruce Maxwell.

Wed Oct. 18, 2023  5:30-7:30pm

Resilience Night

BCAG Chairman Peter Reynolds gave a summary of key takeaways from Resilience Day and the 44 participants broke into two facilitated groups for additional discussion and follow up on issues and solutions.

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Bruce Maxwell is a Montana State University professor specializing in Agroecology, Invasive plant ecology, ecological modeling, precision agriculture.  He is currently lead investigator of a project on agricultural management optimization under high uncertainty.

Dr. Maxwell was lead author for the Agriculture Sector of the Montana Climate Assessment in 2017 and was appointed by Governor Bullock in 2019 to be on the Montana Climate Solutions Council.  He was co-author of the Montana Climate Change and Human Health Report in 2021. 

He has received national awards for best researcher, outstanding teaching, best peer reviewed research papers and outstanding graduate student from the Weed Science Society of America. During his career he has published over 100 scientific peer reviewed journal articles and 13 invited book chapters, chaired and been a member of numerous national agricultural and ecological research grant review panels and been a member of two National Academy of Science National Research Council Committees on Agriculture.