We give voice to Western values in the national conversation about energy development and public lands conservation – a space too often dominated by industry lobbyists and their allies in government.
A majority of folks who live in the Rocky Mountain West strongly believe in balancing energy development with protecting our Western way of life.
It’s why businesses locate here, people visit from around the world, and why millions choose to call the region home. Westerners want and expect our public lands to support good-paying jobs, provide world-class recreation and tourism opportunities, and support healthy, thriving communities – a mix only possible when our government and industry strikes the right balance between energy development and conservation. Founded in 2013 and based in Montana and Colorado, Western Values Project echoes that belief.
Western Values Project focuses its efforts on five major themes:
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Chris comes to the Western Values Project following years of holding powerful special interests accountable throughout the American West, and beyond. He has engaged in investigative research-driven accountability efforts as the Communications Director of the Montana Democratic party and for the Service Employees International Union in Arizona and Colorado. In these positions he exposed how the relationships between elected officials and corporate special interests undermines the public interest.
Jayson joins Western Values Project having previously worked on Montana policy over the past decade. He served as Governor Brian Schweitzer’s Policy and Communications Advisor, Minority Chief of Staff in the Montana Legislature and Communications Director at the Montana Department of Agriculture. He’s also worked in the outdoor industry as an Assistant Manager at Great Divide Ski Area where he still volunteers on their ski patrol.
Andrew Gulliford is a professor of history and Environmental Studies at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. He teaches popular college courses on wilderness, national parks and environmental history and is the author of America’s Country Schools, Sacred Objects and Sacred Places: Preserving Tribal Traditions, and Boomtown Blues: Colorado Oil Shale, which won the Colorado Book Award. He also edited Preserving Western History, which was voted one of the best books on the Southwest by the Tucson-Pima County Library. His most recent book is Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology which won the 2014 Arizona/New Mexico Book Awards in the category of nature/environment and Best Book on Arizona.
A longtime resident of Moab, Utah, Jason is an attorney, twelve-year veteran as the Access Fund’s national policy director, and current owner of Jason Keith Consulting, LLC, a government relations firm catering to mid-size non-profit/public interest organizations with a need for Federal and State level representation on a variety of policy issues affecting public lands. Jason has negotiated national agreements with the US Forest Service, National Park Service, and Bureau of Land Management, submitted Congressional testimony on public lands legislation, founded and represented non-profits on federal agency rule making, and submitted dozens of NEPA comments letters concerning public land management proposals around the country.