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Mark Billings joined BFMP in February 2015 as a previous volunteer. As the program and communications coordinator, Mark manages the school, community-based and foster care programs in Dickinson, Hebron, Glen Ullin, Bowman and New England. He recruits and coaches mentors, facilitates mentee referrals in the public schools and initiates and manages the matches. Mark also writes organizational messaging. A 2018-19 participant in the Change Network North Dakota funded by the Bush Foundation, Mark is working with local immigrants from African countries in creating a cultural mural in downtown Dickinson and involving residents in the 2019 HarvestFest on Sept. 14 at Dickinson State University. An inaugural recipient of the 2017 MENTOR: National Mentoring Partnership Fellowship, Mark also worked with BFMP staff in creating the Family Fun Day 10K, 5K & Youth Competition — an event which has attracted 700 participants and raised $40,000+ for mentoring since its inception five years ago.
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Kris Fehr joined the BFMP in August 2000 as the first full time executive director funded by a grant from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. When she was hired, there were only two matches in the program. Since then, the organization counts an estimated 2,000 matches! She has worked on board and staff training, strategic planning and evaluating program results. Kris is in charge of administration, policies, staffing and board of directors relationships. She has written grants to advance the program and started the organization’s two signature fundraising events, including Family Fun Day — which now spans 21 years — and A Chocolate Affair Plus celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2019.
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Urja Aryal began as a BFMP mentor in December 2015 while an international student at Dickinson State University. A native of Nepal, Aryal has continued to put down roots in Dickinson after graduating from DSU in 2017. While continuing her four-year mentoring relationship and taking on volunteer leadership roles at various BFMP events, Aryal also works with people in the community through her position at ABLE, Inc. The Rotary Club of Dickinson named Aryal a “Rising Star” for her leadership and innovation in expanding the club’s social media presence and for regularly volunteering at events. Aryal also took another important leadership role this past summer when she joined the BFMP board of directors. “I am excited to continue serving an organization that impacts youth in our community,” said Aryal.
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Sylvia Hartford started in January 2001 as a contracted bookkeeper. She is highly respected by BFMP’s auditing firm, Brady Martz. She has worked as a bookkeeper and office manager for Wendy’s and Engineered Well Services, a company owned by her and her late husband serving the oil field during the 1970s and 1980s oil boom. Sylvia has also contracted her bookkeeping services with several other small businesses and nonprofits, including Youth for Christ, and has donated supplies, an office color copier and other items to BFMP. She is also known for her quilting skills. Her “baseball quilt” sold for $250 during a Badlands Big Sticks game in July 2019.
Dorothy Mosbrucker joined BFMP in August 2012 as the administrative assistant. With her six years of experience, Dorothy has contacted thousands of mentor applicant character references and provided a steady, helpful disposition in-person and on the phone to callers and office visitors. A former truck driver and home health care provider, Dorothy is placed at BFMP through Experience Works, a government-funded job training program for seniors.
Helping guide Best Friends is the Western Wellness Foundation board of directors — a group comprised of hard-working, committed volunteers! Some are former mentors, have had a youth in the program or work on the local schools. The Western Wellness Foundation board is comprised of: