Rich Aarstad

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Born in Wyoming and raised in Libby, Montana, Rich holds a B.S. and M.A. degree from the University of Montana. In 2015 he received his archivist certification through the Academy of Certified Archivists. A long time employee of the Montana Historical Society, he started out as the Lewis and Clark Reference Historian in 2001.  Then in April 2006 he transferred to the archives to work as the accessions archivist and oral historian and in 2012 he became the Senior Manuscript Archivist. Married for 28 years, he and his wife have one son and two granddaughters. He describes his wife, Kim, as the love of his life, his hunting buddy and four-wheeler sidekick, who lets him stay in the camper at least on the cold and stormy nights.

Liv Anderson


Liv Anderson was born in Norway and her first encounter with Family History was at the State Archive in Trondheim, Norway at age 12.  She came to Utah at age 19 and shortly thereafter started to work for the LDS Church in the renowned Salt Lake City Family History Library.  She has worked in Reference since November of 1995 and is accredited by the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen) in Norwegian Research and Certified by the Board of Certification for Genealogists.  She has worked in the LDS Church Family History department for more than 30 years.

Sylvia Brown

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Sylvia Brown grew up on a farm and ranch in Bynum Montana in a large family of 12. She graduated from Ricks College with a degree in Early Preschool Education. After marrying a wonderful man, they were blessed to have 7 children. Family is her life and she loves recording the precious memories of her children and 7 grandchildren. In 2014 she became one of the Lead Consultants at the Kalispell Family History Center. This gave her a new love of helping people to navigate and understand the FamilySearch website. She also likes to sew, bake, sing, garden, play pickleball and the ukulele.

Diane Denney

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Living in Kalispell, Diane taught in elementary school for 28 years. Her specialty is math.  She serves as a Lead consultant in the Kalispell Family History Center, where she assists those who need help doing their family history.  Teaching and guiding people of all ages on their family history journey brings her much joy.

Natasha Hollenbach

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Born in Seattle and raised in East Tennessee, Natasha Hollenbach moved to Montana in 2014 and is now the self-appointed newspaper whisperer of the Montana Historical Society. It’s a paradox of her job that as the Digital Projects Librarian responsible for making newspapers available online, she spends a ridiculous amount of time looking at those same newspapers on microfilm. This time is not shortened by the fact that newspapers are wonderfully distracting, always ready to prove the adage: The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Jeff Malcomson


Jeff Malcomson has been a public historian for 20 years in Colorado, Arizona, and Montana, mostly working as an archivist specializing in government records.  He is currently the Photograph Archives Manager at Montana Historical Society, where he has worked for 13 years. Jeff earned a Master’s degree in history from Colorado State University.

Frank and Yvonne Muchmore

Speakers-Muchmore-Yvonne and Frank

Though born and raised in Montana, the Muchmores have lived in many places over the years.  Proud parents of eight children, three girls and five boys, they have many grandchildren and great, grandchildren. Frank spent 37 years as a structural engineer, designing and building bridges for the Forest Service and the State of Alaska.  His favorite retirement project was to restore a 1971 Ford pickup. He has also written several Family History books. Yvonne worked as a stay-at-home mom and later dipped into land conservation employment in the last years before retirement.   Yvonne fell in love with indexing back in the day when it was called extracting. Both she and her husband have served four Family History related missions for the LDS church.

Bill Pitts


Born and raised in Cardston, Alberta, Bill has been married for 50 years and has 5 children and numerous grandchildren.  Moving to Kalispell in 1988, he worked for years in the construction industry and raised his family. This left little time to pursue his interest in genealogy.  When he retired and began working in the Kalispell Family History Center 5 years ago, he was finally able pursue his interest in genealogy. As he sought to become acquainted with his ancestors, he discovered how easy and quickly one could search for and find family records. Since his ancestors hail from both England and Ireland, Bill has become very proficient in using British and Irish websites to document his deceased family members.

Shirley Rogers


Raised on a farm in western Pennsylvania, Shirley is an educator with a B.S from Shippensburg University and M.S. from Johns Hopkins University. She and her husband are the proud parents of seven children and 24 grandchildren.  Her passion for family history began approximately 15 years ago and her family’s roots can be traced to the Pennsylvania Dutch. Presently she serves as the director of the Kalispell Family History Center. She loves to help others build their family trees and her three favorite tools for doing genealogy are FamilySearch, Ancestry and RecordSeek.  In addition to family history, Shirley is an avid gardener who also  loves to explore backroads, visit public gardens and listen to audio books.

Ken and Loretta Sears

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Loretta grew up with three sisters in North Hollywood where her father was a tech specialist for a Los Angeles TV station.  Her husband, Ken, the oldest of 6 children, was born in Preston, Idaho, but moved to Montana when he was in his teens. He met his wife, Loretta, at Brigham Young University while they were students.   For most of their married life they have lived in Whitehall, Montana. They celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2015. Loretta’s family history experience includes over three years as Family History Center Director. In November of 2017 she and Ken became Regional Family History Representatives for the LDS Church.  Their new responsibilities require intensive and ongoing training on FamilySearch, as well as other family history skills.

Zoe Ann Stoltz

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Zoe Ann Stoltz is the Reference Historian for Montana Historical Society Research Center. After growing up in eastern Montana, and raising three daughters in the northwestern corner of the state, Zoe Ann pursued her dream of becoming a Public Historian.  To this end, she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Magna cum Laude from Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts and earned her Masters from the University of Montana. Current projects include introducing students to the delight of primary document research and an examination of Montana Foodways. As Reference Historian, Zoe Ann’s career combines her two passions, the people and history of Montana!

Sylvie Wood

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Sylvie Wood is the treasurer of the Flathead Valley Genealogical Society and is also a presenter for them. Passionate about history and family history, she started researching her family in the 1980’s and is very happy that modern technology has made it easier. She is bilingual and the first French-French Canadian generation in the United States.  

Bev Zierow


Bev has been doing genealogical research since March of 1981. On her father’s side she descend from the kings and queens of England through a Mayflower ancestor; on her mother’s side,  she is a second generation American.  For almost 20 years she has taught family history in the Continuing Education program at Flathead Valley Community College, as well as having taught in Flagstaff, Arizona at the Coconino Community College. As a speaker at several local conferences and at the Montana Governor’s Conference on Aging in October 1999, she has given talks on genealogical research and writing a personal or family history.  In January 2018, she was invited to Panaca, Nevada to be a guest speaker in the Lincoln County High School’s 11th grade US History class to help students personalize the Depression & W.W. II eras by researching and interviewing their relatives. She has written two books about her parents and short biographies about her grandparents and great-grandparents.