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Apr 22, 2023
NBC Montana

Wilderness Speaker Series Features Salish Kootenai College Professor

By NBC Montana Staff

The 2023 Wilderness Speaker Series will hold its final event with a Salish Kootenai College professor.

Tim Ryan will be a guest speaker at the Flathead Valley Community College's Arts and Technology Building #139 from 7 to 8 p.m. this Wednesday.

Organizers released the following information:

The third and final event in the 2023 Wilderness Speaker Series will be on Wednesday, April 26th at Flathead Valley Community College’s Arts and Technology Building #139. From 7:00 to 8:15 PM, the evening will feature Salish Kootenai College professor Tim Ryan as the guest speaker.

Ryan has extensive experience in the backcountry that started with the Boy Scouts and Young Adult Conservation Corps, then continued with his solo ventures and archaeological work with the Tribal Preservation Department of CSKT. He has long been fascinated by the vast network of trails that were traveled by indigenous tribes during seasonal rounds to reach different ecosystems, food sources and cultural resources throughout the year. Ryan’s talk will explore how the Salish used these trails to connect to the vital resources that made it possible for generations not just to survive, but to thrive in their homelands.

Ryan is the department head of Culture and Language Studies and Indigenous STEM instructor for the Native American Studies Division at Salish Kootenai College, lending experiential learning on subjects of culture and science. Previous to this position he spent eight years as a business partner and field supervisor for an archaeological firm called EthnoTech, and served as the as the supervisor of archaeological field survey for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Historic Preservation Department. Ryan’s experiences with his elder’s teachings and his decades-long study of traditional ecological knowledge, ethnobotany, and indigenous sciences, combined with his extensive experience in field archaeology, bring a unique quality and perspectives to his teachings and outdoor experiential opportunities.

There is no charge for this event and all are welcome to join the discussion.

Held on the fourth Wednesday of February, March and April, the Wilderness Speaker Series is hosted by the Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation, the Northwest Montana Lookout Association and the Flathead-Kootenai Chapter of Wild Montana, with support from the Natural Resources Conservation & Management program at FVCC. The series kicked off in February with a talk by local author John Fraley on his newest book, My Wilderness Life. In March, wolf biologist Dr. Diane Boyd discussed the relationship between humans and wolves.

To learn more about the Wilderness Speaker Series and watch recordings of previous presentations, please visit