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Finalists announced for open Helena City Commission seat

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Posted at 5:19 PM, Aug 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-20 15:55:26-04

HELENA — Helena leaders have narrowed down the field of candidates to fill a vacant position on the Helena City Commission. The position had been filled by Eric Feaver, who passed away several weeks ago.

On Friday, the commission interviewed seven candidates for the seat, and they decided to move four of them forward and make their final case.

“It wasn’t easy at all,” said Mayor Wilmot Collins. “The candidates are all capable to do the job; from their resumes, I know they can work with us – but we have to make a choice.”

Initially, the commission planned to advance two or three finalists. But when each commissioner named their top three choices, four candidates received at least two votes:

  • Brianne Harrington is the owner of the Painted Pot, an arts studio and business downtown. She is a former board president for Downtown Helena, Inc.
  • Kim Mangold is a consultant and former deputy director of the Montana Department of Agriculture, and a member of the YWCA Helena board.
  • Troy McGee is retired after 23 years as chief of the Helena Police Department. He ran for city commission in 2021, coming a close third in a race for two open seats.
  • Andy Shirtliff is a business engagement specialist with the Montana Department of Labor & Industry. He is also involved in a number of volunteer efforts.

The commission will conduct additional interviews with the four finalists Tuesday, August 23, starting at 4 p.m.

“I think the final interview, we’ll be looking more at the nitty-gritty of the work – what’s expected of us from our community, what’s expected of us from our constituents,” Collins said.

Collins said the commission plans to make their decision on who they want to fill the position after the interviews on Tuesday.

The newly-appointed commissioner would then be sworn in at a special commission meeting on Monday, August 29.