Group of adults working together in a team building exercise.

Vibrant communities are reliant on the leadership of their citizens.  Communities with skilled volunteer leaders gain access to more resources and opportunities for their communities and the whole community enjoys increased quality of life. 

Big Sky, Big Leadership, MSU Extension's leadership program, was created as a tool that MSU Extension Agents and citizens can use to advance the leadership in their community.  The objective of Big Sky, Big Leadership is to help community members build their own leadership skills and community groups work more effectively together for positive change.

Over time, communities where these programs have been offered enjoy countless benefits including more effective board meetings; new connections which lead to new jobs; new business starts; and large grants to solve large community problems like housing and sewer issues.

Participants learn more about the inner-workings of their community, problem solving skills, working with groups, enhancing cooperation, and dealing with conflict.

Big Sky, Big Leadership was modeled closely after the University of Wyoming’s Extension Volunteer Organization for Leadership Vitality and Enterprise (EVOLVE) and Park County Montana’s Leadership 49 programs. These programs have been effectively implemented in rural, frontier communities for nearly two decades.