Meet Our Newest Team Member – Ashley Kavanagh!

Joining our BSED Team as the Senior Director of Recruitment & Community Development is Ashley Kavanagh!

She answered a few questions to help us get to know her, check them out below! Please join us in welcoming Ashley to the team!


Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Northern Michigan until I was 15 and my parents moved our family to Billings. I graduated from Central in 2011 and I’m excited to be back “home”.   

Career background before joining the BSED team?
I graduated from Carroll College and worked in PR/Marketing in Helena and Boston before moving to the Hi-Line with my husband in 2018. I bought two flower shops in Cut Bank and Columbia Falls and grew our shops to include a coffee shop and full wedding program. Being a business owner naturally led me to care about economic development and I got involved in numerous projects and boards – trails, healthcare, tourism – before having an itch to move back home and work in economic development full-time.

What is something most people don’t know about you?
I moved about every three years growing up throughout Michigan until settling in Montana, and I’ll always be a “new kid” at heart. I always look out for people who are new to a situation or table to try and include them.

What’s your favorite snack?
I am an appetizer rather than dessert kind-of person, and enjoy anything spicy or salty.

What was your first job?
I went in for a birthday cake to our local Baskin Robbins in the Heights for my 15th birthday and walked out with a job (thanks a lot, Mom 😊).

How do you prefer to start your day?
Slowly – Exercise outside, quick daily reflection, breakfast and coffee.

What led you to this career field?
I genuinely care for and enjoy seeing communities thrive and accomplish things that didn’t seem possible. I got into this work by just showing up, volunteering, and getting involved and realized that I’d enjoy combining my background in communications and owning businesses with this career.