Center Staff

Larry Swanson is the Center Director and Scott Endowed Senior Fellow in Regional Economy.  Larry is a Ph.D. economist and regional scientist who has done hundreds of studies of local and area economies throughout the region and does continuing studies on conditions and trends shaping economic and population change in the region.

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William Farr is the Center’s Senior Fellow in Regional History.  He is a Ph.D. historian and UM History Professor Emeritus who focuses much of his work at the Center in researching and writing books on western regional and Native American history.

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Doug Lawrence is the Center’s Computing Coordinator and IT Specialist.  He has a Masters’ degree in computer science and programming and manages and maintains all of the Center’s web sites, computing systems, and data bases.

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Matthew Frank is the Center’s Fellow in Regional Journalism and managing editor of the Center’s web-based regional news service, Mountain West News.  Matthew also is an adjunct professor in the University of Montana School of Journalism.  He has an undergraduate degree in Masters’ degree in regional and environmental journalism.

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Clay Scott is a noted journalist and radio program producer who manages and produces Mountain West Voices – a longstanding series of radio programs and podcasts that highlight the lives of diverse people living in the diverse places throughout the region.

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Affiliates of the Center

Rick and Susie Graetz write, edit, and produce the Crown of the Continent and Greater Yellowstone E-Magazine, which is produced in association with the O’Connor Center.  The on-line magazine was inaugurated in 2008 and is published three times a year, available at no charge.  It focuses on two magnificent ecosystem regions, providing essays, reports, articles and special features on landscapes, science, history, biosystems, geography, socio-economics, art and literature of these regions and their communities.  The magazine is written in “public speak” and features contributions by UM faculty and staff as well as others doing important work in the region.  Photos, artwork, and other visual materials are featured in every issue. <>

Rick and Susie also produce “This is Montana,” focusing on stories about the state and region, produced in part for use by Montana educators.<>

Rick is a faculty member in UM Geography and noted photographer and publisher in the region.  Susie is a journalist, layout artist, and photographer who assembles materials and articles for each of the issues.

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Pat Williams is a former nine-term U.S. House of Representatives member from Montana. He continues to write on subjects of interest to Montanans and speak at a variety of meetings and conferences in the state and region.  Following his 18 years of service as a U.S. Congressman from Montana, Williams returned to Montana and the University, where he is now a Senior Fellow Emeritus.