Tracy McIntyre is the Principal at Rural Economic Designs, LLC in Eureka, Montana. Loving Montana and striving to make a difference every day.
- Community Organizer
Project Management, Fund Development, Grant Writing and Administration, Leadership, Strategic Planning, Infrastructure planning & implementation, and Networking
I have been in Leadership since my teenage years. As one of the first 4-H Ambassadors in the State in High School I was actively involved in 4-H and many other organizations growing up. In college, my nonprofit management background started with being employed by the 4-H Foundation and the MSU Foundation where I was responsible for raising funds and hosting a number of events.
For the last several years, after returning to my family farm in Eureka, I have been the Executive Director of Eureka Rural Development Partners until December of 2015. I left the non-profit world, after 20 years, to pursue my own entrepreneurship dream. I started a consulting company Rural Economic Designs, LLC and focus on leadership, strategic planning, and project development for organizations and communities; focusing on rural areas. Over my career I have worked on sewer, water, trails, roads, and building projects each of which I was instrumental in financing through fundraising (private and public) and oversaw all public interactions and communications. I also was actively involved in a number of community events including leading the Eureka Rendezvous Days for three years with over 3,000 people in attendance.
As a Montana State Ambassador, appointed by Governor Steve Bullock in 2013, I have been able to expand my passion for Montana and try to represent rural communities on a statewide level. I also am engaged in the Montana Economic Developers Association (MEDA) and served on the Leadership Executive Team for the last several years, including two years as president. I tend to approach issues/obstacles with outside the box thinking based on finding solutions. It is about understanding what the heart of the matter is and working together to find solutions that better our communities.
How I Want to Participate in PowerHouse
I love networking and supporting people across our state. Though traveling from Eureka sometimes is challenging, I would love the opportunity to interact and learn from others in the PowerHouse network as well as share the knowledge I have. I enjoy presenting to large groups as well as doing one on one mentoring. I think the opportunity for Montana Women to support and grow with each other is extremely powerful and a program I’d love to be more involved with.
Living in Eureka, provides some challenges from time to time but living on my family farm with my parents house only 300 yards from me is incredible. I’m truly blessed that I now get to work from home (minus when I’m traveling) and can step outside for walks on the acreage I grew up playing on.
I love this State and want to be part of the future of Montana. I see us having a lot of opportunities but also a number of challenges especially in the rural areas. My passion is to find the middle ground and make tomorrow a better place for our future generations.
I also enjoy fishing, taking long drives in my Jeep with my dog, spending summer evenings on my parents porch sipping a cold beverage, campfires with friends, and all the other amazing activities this great State has to offer. My friends will often find me on my down time with a good book or exploring a historical site.
What motivates and inspires you?
My motivation is seeing the communities and organizations that I work with succeed. I know that sounds kind of generic but I truly love seeing success and knowing that I helped complete a project or give direction; this makes me want to do more. I am inspired by living in rural Montana and I want to see a future where others can find success and economic vitality living in the rural community that they love. I believe that Rural America needs a voice to continue to survive and I’m proud to be part of that voice and helping communities thrive.
Who are your sheroes?
Tricky question. Over the course of my life I’ve had many people I’ve admired who helped shape the woman I am today; some good and some not so good. I learned so much from John Rogers who recently retired from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development. He was who helped mentor me in the world of economic development and through the work I did there I really did build a nice career block to continue my success as a consultant. I have been influenced by so many of my friends and those I engage with at PowerHouse including Susan and Chris Marie at Thrive and Courtney at Big Sky Public Relations. Though, I would say my biggest heroes and those who have had the most impact on my life are my parents. My Mom and Dad are the ones that taught me that strength comes in many different forms, it is okay to ask for help, and it is okay to fail as long as you don’t let it stop you. I would say watching them as a couple, as parents, and as individuals over the course of my life and having the friendship I have with them today has been the biggest blessing any woman could have.
What technology do you love and recommend to others? What about books, ideas or podcasts?
I will be honest and admit I’m not a tech person and often find myself doing things old school. I love my daily planner and refuse to go to a digital calendar. The one I got this year is the Law of Attraction Planner that really exceeds daily planning. It has a lot of exercises to do long term goal setting as well as balancing personal and professional which is critical for me as I tend to be a workaholic. As for books I find that a lot of the books that people say are must reads are a lot of hype and though I’ve bought many of the “succeed at business” type books or “find your inner strength” etc. I have rarely read them cover to cover. I get the point within the first few chapters and find myself seeking something else instead of finishing it. Though I do really like Maury Foreman’s books on Community Development- easy easy reads that make you laugh! I find that watching and learning face to face from others is key and when I read I do it more for pleasure. With that said, news is always important and I do stay up to date by reading local and regional newspapers.
How do you reboot?
The best job I’ve ever had is being an Aunt. When the world is just to much I tend to retreat to family and spend time with them. Though I also enjoy kayaking and fly fishing and because of the new planner I have, I am actually learning to schedule the time to do both!
What is your biggest accomplishment?
I think to date, it is realizing that I was no longer effective in a role and stepping away from a secure 8-5 job that I was really good at and going out on my own. I’m only a year into my own business and am now working on a 2nd business to bring online in the Summer; completely unrelated to anything in economic and community development. By proving to myself that I can be enough and can be successful without “a boss” has given me the confidence to really pursue other dreams!
What is the mark you hope to leave on the world?
I hope that in some way I can help others do great things in their own community especially in rural areas. I believe that strong rural communities are needed for our future but I am so concern that rural America is disappearing. I want to motivate youth and others to become engaged in their communities and be part of solutions- lets stop Community Apathy now before it is too late.
Words of wisdom you want to share with Montana women?
Be who you are and don’t apologize for it.