MISSOULA – The University of Montana Alumni Association Board of Directors has chosen winners for its second year of the Grizzly of the Last Decade Award.
This year, UMAA highlights seven alumni who represent the best of the Griz spirit through their trailblazing, service and leadership:
- Jonathan Adams ’10 first put his degrees in psychology and counseling to work by helping create a clinical service for dementia patients and caregivers. He has worked as a mental health clinician for low-income clients and a counselor for employees experiencing work-related stress, but he is most passionate about career counseling.
For the past six years, he has been a career counselor and adjunct faculty member at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Wake Forest University and UNC Chapel Hill, where he served underrepresented student populations at the career center. He currently is working on his own venture that creates day-in-the-life experiences using immersive technology to help organizations maximize retention and employee engagement.
Adams earned the North Carolina Association of Colleges and Employers’ President’s Award in 2018. His team at UNC Greensboro received national accolades in 2015 for integrating Gallup's Clifton Strengths Assessment across campus, and his team at UNC Chapel Hill received similar recognition in 2017 for holding a Food Truck Rodeo for career education.
- Luke Bahnmaier ’10 began his career as a graduate assistant athletic trainer for the University of Oregon football and women’s lacrosse teams, before earning a place among the country’s competitive athletic training residencies at St. Luke’s Sports Medicine in Boise.
From 2013 to 2017, Bahnmaier worked as a clinical athletic trainer, and he now manages St. Luke’s Orthopedic Urgent Care clinic, the first in the St. Luke’s health system. With a focus on improving care for patients with injuries, he shares his knowledge with athletic trainers and physicians at state, regional and national conferences, including Montana’s annual athletic trainers’ symposium.
As well as mentoring athletic trainers, he collaborates with boards in Montana, Washington, Oregon and Alaska as vice president of the Idaho Athletic Trainers’ Association and serves as a volunteer preceptor to the UM Athletic Training Program.
Bahnmaier earned the Northwest Athletic Trainers’ Association New Horizon Award in 2018.
- Bryce Carver ’13 has incorporated his experience as a Griz football receiver into his position as head football coach for Hamilton High School since 2017.
Under his leadership, the Hamilton Broncs have played in two state championships and posted a 30-5 record. He coached the Montana Shrine Game in 2018 and 2019 and the Montana-North Dakota game in 2018.
Carver is involved with numerous service activities, such as Hamilton Athletics Community Service Day, an Emma’s House Fundraiser for children’s advocacy, the Marcus Daily Memorial Hospital Fundraiser and various Hamilton football and basketball camps. He also hosts summer programs, as well as a youth football program – all while serving as Hamilton High School’s assistant basketball coach.
Carver follows a line of Griz and often connects his football players with UM after they graduate.
- Emily Graslie ’11 is the first-ever chief curiosity correspondent for the Field Museum in Chicago and the developer of the popular science education channel “The Brain Scoop.”
In the more than 200 episodes of “The Brain Scoop,” created with YouTube educator Hank Green in 2013, she interviews scientists, tours collections and describes how to prepare museum specimens.
Graslie has earned multiple awards for her creativity, including six Webby Awards, listings on the 2018 Forbes 30 under 30 list in Education and the Chicago Tribune’s 2017 “Chicagoans of the Year.” The Wahydra graslieae butterfly species found in Ecuador is named after her.
The University featured her on the 2019 Odyssey of the Stars, and UM has a Graslie Curiosity Internship in her honor, which encourages students from any major to pursue a creative project with the Philip L. Wright Zoological Museum.
- Svein Newman ’09 has served Montana with his political science expertise for the past decade.
As a staff member of the conservation and family agriculture nonprofit Northern Plains Resource Council, he helps develop community leaders and works with Montanans to help protect water quality, family farms and ranches and Montana’s unique quality of life.
Newman’s initiatives have focused on natural resource conservation, improved water quality standards for agricultural water users, and strengthened clean energy and local food systems. He is a frequent leader for other like-minded organizations around the state.
Newman co-founded Soft Landing Missoula for refugee resettlement and is the vice chair of the Montana Human Right Network’s board of directors. In 2018, he organized crowdfunding efforts that saved 31 low-income households from losing their homes to back taxes, and in 2019, led a successful state property tax reform campaign to save hundreds of additional Montanans from losing their homes in the future.
- Ashlynn Reynolds-Dyk ’08, M.A. ’10, Ph.D., is known for her focus on active and engaged learning in the classroom, as well as high-impact practices incorporating civics and service.
She taught writing and communications at UM, Colorado Mesa University, Colorado Christian University and Rocky Mountain College. She currently is an assistant professor of English at Rocky Mountain College, where she has taught for the past four years.
At RMC, Reynolds-Dyk helped pilot the new Technology Enhanced Active Learning classroom and created a new course in digital and media literacy. She coordinates service learning projects for her students and received RMC’s Active and Engaged Learning Grant two years in a row for a major community service project with her freshmen. Her students have helped numerous local nonprofits.
A mother of three, Reynolds-Dyk finds time to volunteer in her children’s schools, youth sports programs and the local PTA and contribute to Simply Local Magazine Billings.
- Daniel Zolnikov ’10, M.B.A. ’19, is completing his fourth and final term as a representative in the Montana State Legislature. Since 2013, he has protected the civil liberties of all Montanans.
He helped create the first, full-time law enforcement agents to combat human trafficking and pass the nation’s strongest freedom of the press bill, as well as leading legislation protecting Montanans’ privacy rights with new technologies.
Zolnikov also helped pass legislation ensuring Montanans under 21 would not receive a Minor in Possession misdemeanor for calling 911 during a medical emergency and carried legislation that brought Uber and Lyft to the state to reduce drunk driving. He helped reform asset forfeiture laws and removed laws allowing the state to seize professional licenses of people who default on student loans.
As chairman of the House Energy and Technology and Federal Relations Committee, he successfully wrote and passed further legislation reforming major energy and utility laws.
Zolnikov ranked as one of Forbes’ “30 Under 30” policymakers in the nation in 2014.
Read more about these Grizzlies of the Last Decade at www.grizalum.org.