Annie Kurtz

Last Updated 08/15/2019
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Annie Kurtz

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Get to know me-I’m happy to meet with people here in town to visit. I’d like to hear your ideas and concerns. If you have time to get involved with me and the election I’d gladly take help getting the word out about my campaign.

Meet the Candidate

Annie Kurtz campaign signI was born and raised in Montana in Helena, Hamilton, and Great Falls. I attended Montana State University in Bozeman and was involved in a number of leadership and student government activities on campus. It was at MSU that I met my future husband Dusty in 1996. I was finishing my degree and began full time work as a Resident Director at MSU. I graduated in 1999 with my Bachelors’ Degree and stayed in Bozeman working for the Residence Life Department.

In 2001, I spent time living in different cities in Montana figuring out what I wanted to do post graduation. I worked at a group home for severely emotionally disturbed children, worked as a 911 call taker, and as a social worker on the child abuse and neglect hotline for the State of Montana. It was this work that led me to pursue my Master’s Degree. I returned to Bozeman, and worked three jobs while pursuing my Master’s Degree and graduated in 2004.

After graduation, there were three different career paths I was interested in, and I decided that the first one to offer me a job was where I was meant to be. I was offered a job in Astoria, OR working as a social worker in child welfare. I moved out to the coast and loved living in Astoria with a good friend and my two dogs.

Dusty and I got engaged after I moved, and the plan was for him to join me in Oregon after our wedding. The universe had different plans, and he was offered a job in Denver, CO. We relocated to Colorado, and I worked in North Denver as a social worker for five years. In 2010, we had our first daughter, Brooklyn. At the same time, Dusty was offered a new position in Spokane, and we brought our family to Liberty Lake in the spring of 2011.

I stayed home with Brooklyn for about 10 months after we arrived and then decided I wanted to go back to work. I worked for the State of Washington as a social service specialist for about a year, and then transitioned to the role of Regional Program Manager for In-Home and Evidence Based Programs and Parent Child Visitation in 2013. In 2014, we had our second daughter, Callie Jo. When I returned to work after maternity leave, Performance Based Contracting (PBC) was added to my role, and I was the lead for the implementation of PBC—the only site in the state.

Our family consists of my husband Dusty, Brooklyn (8), Callie (4), and our dog Buddy and cat Meya.
I enjoy gardening, crafts, reading, and watching the girls be magical. Two years ago, we purchased a vintage 1960 trailer and I have had fun learning to tow it, learning how to fix and build new pieces for it, and we have had a blast camping.

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What qualifications or experience do you have that uniquely qualifies you to lead Liberty Lake?
As the Performance Based Contracting (PBC) Lead for the State of Washington, I served as the principal designee for Children’s Administration and regional management to monitor policy implementation, provide technical consultation, clinical consultation, policy interpretation, training, and oversight to agency staff, community, service providers, and other interested parties for these programs. I provided guidance and oversight for the day to day monitoring of the $14 million dollar PBC contract. I designed, negotiated, and executed multiple contracts that integrated legislative requirements, functional program and performance knowledge, desired outcomes, and performance standards for performance based contracting. As the Regional In-Home and Evidence Based Programs, Parent Child Visitation, CFWS/Permanency Program Lead I served as the principal agent for the saturation of knowledge, clinical oversight, and utilization of these programs in the region (13 counties in eastern Washington). I lead the region’s internal staff and external partners in the development, design, implementation, training, and monitoring of statewide programs to include the development, interpretation, and implementation of policy, procedures, and quality assurance and improvement plans for the effective delivery of all assigned programs. As a result of my work in government, I have the following skills and strengths that will position me well to be an advocate and voice for Liberty Lake:
  • Strategic planning and needs assessment
  • Policy development, design, dissemination, training, analysis, and revision
  • Program design, development, implementation, training, assessment
  • Solution focused style
  • Leadership experience
  • Research & data analysis experience
  • Inclusive problem solver
  • Community development
  • Quality assurance and performance based contracting
  • Contract design, development, negotiation and monitoring
  • Critical thinking for short term and long term success
  • Detail orientated
  • Direct communication style
Qualifications Quick List:

  • Master of Science, Health and Human Development, Family Science, Montana State University.
  • Bachelor of Science, Sociology, Justice Studies, Montana State University.
  • Montana State University Award for Excellence
  • Marie Moebus Award-Montana State University
What is your "day job" and how will that affect or influence your ability to serve the community?
I left the workforce last year to spend more time with my daughters who are eight and four years old. This opportunity allowed us to slow our family down a little and to for me to have time to enjoy things like volunteering in my oldest daughter’s classroom, joining the PTO at her school, spending time sewing for the new sensory room, not to mention being there everyday to pick her up and drop her off for school. My availability will allow me to dedicate a great deal of time and attention to my role as a City Council member. This availability is complimented by my experience working in city, county, and state government in four states over the past 21 years. I have the time to focus in detail on the issues presenting the city, as well as the skills necessary to develop positive solutions with my fellow council members.
Why do you want to serve Liberty Lake?
The simple answer is—it’s just something I really want to do, and I have time. I LOVE policy work. I love working behind the scenes to conceptualize an end product from the granular details to the big picture, and then build it from scratch to achieve the goal. I enjoy working with people, listening to the different perspectives that need to be considered, weighing the impacts, and coming together as a team to decide the best path forward. Not everyone has time and/or interest in these things. I do—and I hope that voters will find me to be a person they can trust to do this work on their behalf so that they can spend their time enjoying this beautiful city.
What do you see as Liberty Lake's greatest challenge? How will you overcome it?
Pacing the growth of the city and not losing the small town feel. The city is going to grow, and it has been a part of the plan for quite some time. We need to be thoughtful about expansion of the city, particularly when it comes to existing and necessary new infrastructure to support new residents and businesses. Projects like Harvard Road and the Henry/Kramer road overpass need to be a priority in order to properly support the egress in and out of the city. Trailhead is also a topic that needs a plan and a vision. I know the City Council is busy considering this important project for the long term needs of the city. I am hopeful that the City will reach out to actively engage residents of Liberty Lake in discussion about what to do with that area not only from a fiscal standpoint, but how any changes to that area can add to the Liberty Lake of the future.
What do you see as Liberty Lake's greatest strength? How will you build on that?
We are a small town community with lovely tree lined streets, amazing schools, beautiful parks, delicious restaurants, and community groups who put on great events for us all to enjoy throughout the year. I think we need to pace the growth of the city to avoid the pitfalls of cities who expanded too quickly and didn’t have infrastructure in place to support it. We live next to much bigger cities, and have the benefit of a small town to call home. We need to be open to new businesses that enhance living here, but don’t duplicate or take away from existing local shops and services.
How long have you been a resident of Liberty Lake?
8 years
In which Liberty Lake neighborhood do you live?
Legacy Ridge
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