Michael Nelson
Year
2019
Chapter
Position
Forward Montana, Field Manager

Born and raised in Missoula, Michael Nelson graduated from the University of Montana with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, a Minor in International Development Studies, and was a graduate of the Global leadership Initiative. In college he developed his passions for youth organizing and interdisciplinary problem solving. During the budget crisis at UM, Michael was central in organizing student efforts to protest budget cuts to the Humanities. Michael was a field canvasser for Montana Conservation Voters where he personally knocked hundreds of doors to advocate against Legislative Referendum 126 that would have eliminated same-day voter registration in Montana. Currently, Michael is Field Manager for Forward Montana in Billings. He advocates for higher education funding, affordable housing solutions, and accessible elections. Additionally, he develops young leaders through field and classroom training, and oversees get -out-the-vote programs that reach thousands of voters every election cycle.

During his tenure as Billings Field Manager, Michael tripled the amount of active volunteers, exceeded numeric goals for get-out-the-vote efforts, and registered over 1,200 voters in Yellowstone County.

Michael believes deeply in the power of young people changing our communities through civic participation, and has spent the majority of his professional life cultivating space for young leaders to explore careers in community organizing. While not at work, Michael hikes in Montana’s pristine public lands, gardens, plays Dungeons and Dragons, and travels to new places across the globe.