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Montana District Office

Success Stories

Success Stories

In February of 2002, Laura Garber and husband Henry Wuensche, started Homestead Organics Farm in Hamilton, Montana.  For over a decade the farm has served as a gathering place for food and learning in the Bitterroot Valley. The farm encompasses 14 acres, including; six unheated greenhouses, 350-foot-long rows of fruit and nut trees, a farm stand, a 10’ x 12’ walk-in cooler, and a certified commercial kitchen. 

This family-run vegetable farm serves as one of the farms within the Community Support Agriculture (CSA) program and an on-site farm stand from summer through fall. Within the CSA program, Homestead Organics offers produce on a sliding scale to its members serving from two to eight people.  Participants in the CSA program pledge to support one or more local farms, therefore growers and consumers share in the risks and benefits of food production. In return they  receive monthly shares of produce, grains, cut flowers, eggs and a variety of meat including pork, lamb and... Read More

A visit to Lisa Wareham Photography’s website, lisawareham.com, reveals not only amazing images, but the quote “Life. It’s meant to be felt even after the moment is gone.”  Reading that quote really divulges what Lisa Wareham is all about.

After graduating from the University of Montana with a degree in Journalism as well as working in various journalism jobs, she stumbled upon her passion for photography, and in 2008 Lisa Wareham Photography was created.  Much like the quote says, looking at Lisa’s images the characters come to life and the “feelings” of that particular moment are felt.  Her journalistic approach is what sets her apart from other photographers in the area.

Lisa started her business in a rented space in the basement of a historic yet run down building in uptown Butte.  Then in 2012 Lisa and her husband decided to purchase the building and renovate it to its previous historic glory.  Lisa quickly turned to Julie Jaksha, Butte Small Business Development... Read More

After recognizing a great love for her salsas in the community of Bozeman, Claudia Krevat started Claudia’s Mesa in 2009. At the time, Claudia was working as a designer for a local flooring business and she gifted her salsa to her construction clientele. She would arrive at construction sites dressed in her Latin-Caribbean flare and offer chips and salsa to the construction workers. Claudia, along with her salsa, quickly became a local favorite and she recognized a greater opportunity for her salsas.

She started to sell her salsas in local grocery stores and began teaching cooking classes, which helped her develop her brand and credibility. Today, Claudia’s Mesa offers a unique line of marinades, chutneys, salsas and dips. She also features pop-up events and cooking classes, which have become the most thriving part of her business.

As a young child growing up in Barranquilla, Columbia, Claudia spent most her time in the kitchen helping the family cook of three... Read More

Lessons to be Learned from Tanya Chemodurow of Abatement Contractors of Montana

After eight years, Tanya Chemodurow finally has a place to hang her kimono. 


Sitting in Tanya’s very modern office at Abatement Contractors of Montana, LLC, with a kimono hanging on the wall, it’s hard to believe she started in an old 100 square foot apartment building in East Missoula.  Touring her new 6,000 square foot facility, Tanya’s passion and devotion for the business she has developed from the ground up is evident. 


Chemodurow is an SBA all-star.   She’s received an SBA 504 loan through Montana Community Finance Corporation, became 8(a) certified for federal contracting and graduated from SBA’s e200 Emerging Leaders program. 


“All really go hand-in-hand,” said Chemodurow.  


She learned about the 8(a) program while attending a PTAC (Procurement Technical Assistance Center) conference.  SBA’s 8(a) Business Development program is a nine-year program established to assist eligible socially and economically... Read More