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Gillette’s Lifestyle Magazine








Lifesaver ARTS



Sherlock THE

Jack THE


From Education to Art to Business, Meet 8 Women Challenging Gillette's Status Quo.





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Gillette College student Brie Leingang pursues a degree in engineering despite sizable sex gaps in STEM disciplines.


30 ELITE 8

Introducing our top pick of Gillette’s brightest movers and the shakers—the ones who show us what it means to be a woman in the 82717 in this day and age.


Bonita Beauty’s Lezly Delgado has always loved being around makeup but what inspired her business might surprise you.



Editorial CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Erika C. Christensen MARKETING DIRECTOR Stephanie L. Scarcliff CHIEF OF STAFF Lisa A. Shrefler SALES Jessica L. Pierce Jason N. Kasperik CONTRIBUTORS Jennifer C. Kocher Kevin M. Knapp Megan K. Huber Ryan R. Lewallen Charity Stewart ART DIRECTOR Richard W. Massman DESIGNER Candice E. Schlautmann PHOTOGRAPHER Adam D. Ritterbush

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On the Cover

Once a year, we pause to recognize the women shaping the community of Campbell County, Wyoming. These are the movers and the shakers, who show us what it means to be a woman in the 82717 in this day and age. Top (left to right): Katrin Wagner, Pinnacle Bank VP of Lending; Janell Oberlander, Gillette College Vice President; Dara Corkery, Community and Arts Philanthropist; Janaia Hyland, Campbell County Sheriff ’s Office Investigations Sergeant. Bottom: Kelly Barlow, Campbell County School District Case Manager; Stacie McDonald, Visionary Broadband Director of Public Relations; Dr. Keri Shannon, Stocktrail Elementary School Principle; and Elizabeth “Liz” Wood, Campbell County Health Emergency Room RN and Intermediate EMT. Photo by Adam D. Ritterbush



Outliers Creative, LLC P.O. Box 3825 • Gillette, WY 307.686.5121 • 82717 is a publication of Outliers Creative, LLC © 2018, all rights reserved. Reproduction in any form, in whole or part, without written permission is prohibited. This magazine accepts freelance contributions. 82717 is not responsible for loss, damage, or any other injury to unsolicited manuscript, unsolicited artwork (including but not limited to drawings, photographs, or transparencies) or any other unsolicited materials. Outliers Creative, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The MC Family of Companies, LLC.

Welcome Editor’s Note:



ver a year ago, we noticed something was off: The magazines and articles we were reading and writing were somewhat male-dominated. In response, we chose to focus an entire issue on business-driven Campbell County women. Last March, we rolled out our first Women’s Issue and crowned the inaugural batch of Outliers Creative ELITE 8 Award-winners. Among them, a photographer, an educator, a facilitator, a banker and three entrepreneurial business owners. Since, we’ve decided to make a habit of stopping to recognize like-minded women. The overall goal isn’t to talk more about females achieving. (Although, admittedly, it’s something we love to do.) Instead, we’re talking about women as innovators, doctors, lawyers, artists, strategists and the corporate elite—who they are and what they accomplish, and not just because they’re women. I wanted our magazine to showcase what local women are contributing to the community,

because that’s how I feel we will eventually level the playing field. And I think we’ve accomplished that. Inside, you’ll find a comprehensive list of predominant women leading in local business. These are the movers and the shakers, who show us what it means to be a woman in the 82717 in this day and age. It’s important to note, we’re not working to empower them.

This month, women—and men—can access that same greatness across all our platforms with the second-annual Women’s Issue, where we lift up those who’ve harnessed their own professional hustle to benefit others and the community as a whole. To those women not yet recognized— specifically, the 38 of you who were nominated to this year’s honor but not chosen—keep grinding, ladies! We see you shining.

Stephanie L. Scarcliff, Production Editor

These high achievers have empowered themselves. We’re showing our appreciation for having done that and sharing their success stories with the masses.

Learn more about women making it happen in Gillette at




Start the Conversation Our Chief of Staff, Lisa, keeps us all on track. Whenever we need advice, we pin her down and she sets us straight, from everything like what to wear on a first date to how to have those hard, but necessary relationship-defining talks. She’s crazy smart about such things, and we’d be lost without her wisdom and advice. Now, we’re sharing her with all of you.

Let her help you out at More 82717 online at Though 82717 Magazine may only be published once a month, don’t forget to go online to to keep up with our local community. You can re-read our print stories, find a full calendar of local events, additional features from our team of reporters and community mavens, and video discussions about the stories you see here in print.

Let’s Ask Lisa > Tiptoeing Through Life > What To Write? > When You Start Dating Later In Life…Oy!


#InGoodTaste We’ve got the best selections of stylish local living just for you! From what you wear or where you eat, to how you decorate and personalize your home, we’ll be your go-to guide for living #InGoodTaste.




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Brie Leingang at Gillette College. Photo by: Adam D. Ritterbus



g n i g d i r B GAP the


interests began to change in the wake of Gillette College’s inclusion of engineering program opportunities. Since, she’s been taking general engineering courses trying to figure out which area appeals most. She jokes she might be one of only a few students on earth talking excitedly about calculus III and chemistry homework. Statistically speaking, Brie is bucking the gender trend when it comes to females entering the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. Recent studies by the National Science Foundation found that while women receive bachelor's degrees in science and engineering at nearly an equal rate as Brie is finishing up her associate’s degree men, when it comes in general science and health sciences to certain areas like computer sciences, engineering, and mathematics, woman are receiving far fewer science and health sciences as she prepares to degrees at a rate of 18 percent, 19 percent, and 43 transfer to the South Dakota School of Mines and percent, respectively. Technology to begin an engineering program. When it comes to the field of information She started school with the idea of following technology, those stats are equally disproportionate. her older sister into the medical profession, but her hile most little girls were playing with dolls and baking cakes in their Betty Crocker easy-bake ovens, Brie Leingang was building Lego villages and drawing pictures of airplanes. As a kid growing up on military bases, her U.S. Marines father’s love of mechanics definitely rubbed off on her, as did a passion for understanding the mechanical underpinnings of what makes things tick. Perhaps not surprisingly, today at age 20, Brie is finishing up her associate’s degree in general

AT AGE 20,

According to Computing Technology Industry Association research, 69 percent of women did not pursue careers in information technology because they weren’t aware of the choices and opportunities available to them. For Brie, math and science classes never felt gender specific. Going to high school in Gillette, her STEM classes were pretty much half and half, and it never struck her as odd that she was drawn to the sciences. “I like things that make sense,” she said. “In math, you don’t have all those choices and there’s only one correct answer and a limited number of ways to get there.” That structure and the logical ordering of events feels natural to her, and she doesn’t consider herself to be pioneering in any way. She’s just following her interests and taking courses she likes. Although she feels she hasn’t completed enough courses yet to determine what branch of engineering – civil, mechanical, or structural – she plans to pursue long-term, she’s enjoying the process of learning and parsing through all those complicated problems, her future among them. By: Jen C. Kocher MARCH / APRIL 2019





Mary “Junglecat” Wilson talks about art, inspiration, money and the meaning behind her exotic artist nickname.


Tell us, what inspires you?

y work is inspired by the moments in my adventures that have felt transcendent—the ones that made me feel something intense, something beyond everyday life. Those times when everything hums and glows with significance.

FAVORITE MEDIUM? The materials I use vary depending on the experience I’m trying to create. I tend to paint when the feeling itself is so beyond words that the only way to express it is pictorially—right now I’m working on a series of paintings that are about the electric feeling of being deep in nature on a summer night.

I also write, play music and design outfits trying to capture something elusive and mesmerizing, like when you wake up from a really interesting dream and rush to write it down. I guess I live with one foot in my own enchanted fantasyland, and my work is an attempt to invite other people into it.

ARTIST’S NICHE? I’m best known for being a wildcard. I’m always running away on new adventures, ending up in the strangest places (like Gillette! I never meant to end up here), and defying everyone’s expectations— even the people who know me really well. I’ve been



working on writing these adventures down, turning them into a book.

WHY ART? My favorite thing about art is that it can be anything, and because of that it allows me to express strange nuanced things that words alone can’t quite capture. Art lets me memorialize all the things that strike me as noteworthy.

HOW’S WORK? As program coordinator at AVA, I work with Executive Director Grace Torres to make exciting, creative things happen here. Some of my favorite parts of my job are setting up still lifes for our Lunch and Sketch group that meets on Tuesdays (open to members from 11a.m. – 1 p.m.), photographing the beautiful handmade things in our Artisan Market, making ads for our workshops, and planning fun artistic activities to do with Gillette College. And of course, meeting all the fascinating people who come through our doors. I would never have known that Gillette has such a great creative community. I feel immensely lucky to be a part of



it. It’s really nice to have gotten to a place where I’m feeling collected and productive again, and to be a part of an artistic community that inspires me to keep working.

WHAT’S NEXT? I wish I could tell you to check out my website or something, but since my art has never been about making money to me (that’s what working is for), it hasn’t been much of a priority. I’m more concerned with making something true to what I envision and getting it right. Eventually, I’ll join the herd and make a website but, for now, if you want to know what I’m up to, come by AVA and maybe I’ll have some pictures on my phone.

WE’RE DYING TO KNOW, WHY JUNGLECAT? People started calling me Junglecat because one day in a critique someone asked me what the “J” stands for (I sign my work Mary J. Wilson because

Mary Wilson just feels plain and too short, and also there’s so damn many other Mary Wilsons in the world already), and since I was wearing headto-toe leopard print that day (it was art school), I sarcastically said “Junglecat.” It was funny, so it took off. But you know, I’ve come to realize it suits me. A jungle cat is one step away from being a domestic cat, but it’s too wild for that. As someone who does a lot of seemingly domestic things (knitting, sewing, etc.) in a wilder way, I feel that. So, I keep the name because it speaks to the part of me that prefers prowling to routine and refuses to be tamed. I really think that’s where my work comes from. Plus, I like cats. By: Mary “Junglecat” Wilson with

Stephanie L. Scarcliff



Samantha Power:


of Gillette

hile her first semester was dedicated solely to her studies and soccer, by her second she found herself among the ranks of the prestigious Phi Theta Kappa, a nationwide academic excellence organization. Midway through that same semester, Samantha learned about the student government association and, though she had never been one to lead, entered the running for student government president. She threw herself into the race and came out on top, skillfully securing her position as president. From that point, everything took off. “I just started falling in love with it, I really did,” she said. Samantha found herself meeting with top executives of the Northern Wyoming Community College District semi-regularly, serving as a liaison between the college’s upper echelon and the student body. Her involvement with PTK rose to the next level as well, with Samantha accepting the position of regional vice president for the Wyoming and Colorado area. Samantha threw herself into her new roles, attending leadership conferences and conversing face-to-face with U.S. Sens. Mike Enzi and John Barrasso, both R-Wyo. She was interviewed for local news stories on the Student Government



Association and her nominations for various scholarships. Before she knew it, Samantha had become Gillette College’s pride and joy, evidenced by her nomination and selection as Gillette College’s Student of the Year. “To be quite honest with you, I didn’t really know what that meant or what that encompassed,” she admitted. The details were quite simple: becoming Gillette College’s Student of the Year meant that her involvement in student organizations and academic prowess had captured the attention of leadership, and they weren’t about to let her skate by without recognizing her for it. Humble at heart, Samantha refuses to take full credit for her success at Gillette College, saying that it would have been impossible to succeed without her peers and college faculty. “I’m totally a part of all of it and I love doing it, but I’ve never really appreciated the saying ‘it takes a village’ more than I do now,” Samantha said She wants to use her success to one day help others achieve the same. “If I can help one person in a way that changes their life and they go on to do something great, or maybe they go on to help someone else, eventually the world is going to feel that,” she said. “There is going to be change.”

Pride College She is only 19, young by traditional standards, but Samantha hasn’t let that stand in her way. To other dreamers who think age is a barrier, she says it is important to love what you do and to find something you are passionate about. “There’s always something that can be made better or something that can be perfected by positive influence,” Samantha said. To help kick things into overdrive, she says that it is important to create a diverse network of people with a variety of strengths to serve as mentors, advisors, or simply people to bounce ideas off of. “I like to think that I’m smart, but I like to surround myself with people who intimidate me with how much knowledge they have,” Samantha explained. “There is so much to learn from other people.” Moving forward, Samantha’s studies will take her to the University of Wyoming, where she will continue her goal of becoming a speech pathologist. No matter where she finds herself in the coming years, she will always remember her days at Gillette College. “Never in a million years did I think when I agreed to come play soccer in Gillette, Wyoming, that a hundred other doors would open up for me,” she said with feeling. By: Ryan R. Lewallen MARCH / APRIL 2019


their own retail space. Now, just over a year later, they have expanded yet again into an even larger retail space on Miller Avenue, where they also provide space for other vendors. Currently, Red Daisy Gifts showcases more than 50 regional vendors and artists, selling everything from clothing, food and drink, to jewelry and home décor.

“The community is definitely supporting us,” Krissy said as word of their business continues to spread. Along with running the store on their days off, they also have hired staff to help keep things afloat. “We provide local jobs and give other vendors a space to sell their creative designs and products,” Stephanie said. “We wanted to make other people’s dreams come true, too.”


tephanie Bryce and Krissy Borcher were sick of wearing jeans and sweatshirts to work. As two of the few equipment operators at Black Thunder Mine, they dressed to fit in with their mostly male colleagues. Inside, they missed feeling pretty and dressing up like girls. A couple years ago, the two friends, who met at the mine more than a decade ago, decided to fill a perceived niche in the community by providing an online retail store. Using social media, they bought



retail clothing in bulk and would sell it out of their homes. When their inventory outgrew their storage, they needed a storefront. “There’s nowhere really in town to find stylish clothing other than chain stores,” Stephanie said, noting that shopping locally often meant looking like everyone else in town. They wanted cool, diverse boutique clothing that you really couldn’t find without driving pretty far to a bigger city. As they had suspected, there was a demand and when business began to take off, they rented

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risten DaVanon is one of the few people around who can say she’s working her dream job. She didn’t grow up hunting with her family in Illinois, or even camp very often. Although, she did do a lot of fishing. It was her love of animals and her desire to move West that slowly led her to Wyoming. DaVanon said she’d never even been to Wyoming before interviewing for the position as Game Warden for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD). But, now that she’s here, she doesn’t think she’ll ever leave.

She moved to New Mexico for college and earned a bachelor’s degree in wildlife science, and then a master’s in biology. She enjoyed New Mexico, but found herself missing fall. Still wanting to live in the West, she focused her job search on Wyoming, Montana, and Colorado, while working as an adjunct instructor at a Texas community college. She laughs when talking about missing fall and ending up in Wyoming. But, she says there’s still more fall in the Cowboy State than there is in the desert. “My plan was to be a wildlife biologist,”

said DaVanon. “I didn’t want to be a game warden, because in Illinois their role is strictly law enforcement.” The role of game wardens in Wyoming is different from a lot of other states, incorporating law enforcement along with wildlife biology and public outreach. “When I found out there was a job that encompasses absolutely everything I’ve ever wanted to do, it’s just fitting that I got lucky enough to get this job,” DaVanon said. When she started with the WGFD three years ago, she was one of only four women in the law enforcement basic class at the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy, and the only female game warden in her class of 35. “Of course, you’re outnumbered, but no one treated me differently,” DaVanon explained. She said in her current position, the positive comments have far outweighed the negative. “I think here in Wyoming people are used to women pioneering and persevering,” she added. Wyoming game wardens have the same authority as any other law enforcement agency. However, the Game and Fish Commission regulates what enforcement action they take, ensuring the focus is on laws pertaining to fish and wildlife. DaVanon said the training she’s received in her short career has prepared her to handle any situation. “The thing that most people don’t realize is that 99 percent of the people I talk to have a gun, usually right there out in the open. So, that’s something we’re always aware of,” she said.





erry Byrd was Gillette’s fourth Uber driver, until she launched her own food delivery service, Byrd’s Food Angels, in November 2017. “My dad was an Uber driver in San Antonio, Texas. He earned a solid income and I thought, ‘why not?’” Kerry said. “I made good money with Uber, too... in the beginning.” Uber now employs over 112 drivers in Gillette. As the number of local drivers was on the rise, the earning potential began to drop. Significantly. Looking for alternative earning opportunities, Kerry reached out to Uber Eats and Grub Hub to bring food service to Gillette, but both declined. “I decided, hey! I can deliver food,” she said. Kerry turned to her husband, Lance Byrd of Byrds Handyman Services, for help. Lance already owned his own local business and also had a background in the food service and hospitality industry. “He thought it was a great idea and has supported me at every step along the way,” she



said. Together, they opened Byrd’s Food Angels, a smart, easy way to order all different types of food online. “We handle all the details of getting your food to your home or business with no hassles,” Kerry beamed. “However, we don’t handle catering. We leave the large jobs to the

restaurants and caterers. You can order online at or give us a call. We’re here and we really want to help.” One client, an older man who lives

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independently, orders meals through Byrd’s Food Angels twice daily. “Scrambled eggs, bacon and hash browns from Lula Belle’s for breakfast,” she said, “burger with mustard, pickles and onions only, no cheese, no potatoes, later on, also from Lula Belle’s.” “He knows what he likes,” she smiled. The reality that he must also like her service, too, appears to dawn on her. At age 50, Kerry is humble and kind beyond her years. She went on to say the people of Gillette, as a whole, are fantastic. “I’d love to have more restaurants sign on as affiliates,” she said, “but, for now, it’s really all about the people. That’s why we do it.” The Byrds employ a staff of six and continue to expand. “If you’re an Uber driver and want a job, just give us a call,” she said with a laugh.




Photo: Adam D. Ritterbush

wenty years ago, when I decided I would start my own practice as a certified public accountant, I didn’t know what I wanted it to end up being, but I knew what I did not want it to be. • I did not want to use ‘accountspeak’ to confuse my small business and not-for-profit clients. I wanted to explain accounting results in language my clients would understand, using plain English whenever possible. • I did not want to frustrate my staff the way I had sometimes been frustrated by prior employers. I wouldn’t expect them to only grow to fit the job I had for them, or to limit their dreams and goals to fit my needs. • I did not want to be the last to warn my clients that their current financial situation is dangerous and they need to do something today to change their fate. • I did not want to perpetuate the low salaries and mandatory overtime that I had experienced in other public accounting practices as para-professional staff. What I did want was to build a business that helped my clients, hundreds of whom have been brand-new businesses, to establish and grow their dreams and financial goals. I wanted to hire positive and enthusiastic women and teach them the skills they would need to do the job. I wanted to support my staff by being flexible in helping them deal with their own challenges, and to support the community and our not-for-profit entities with service, advice, and aid. I am thankful I landed in Gillette, Wyoming, in 1981. It has become the hometown I never had growing up. I am especially thankful for Gillette College because, without the opportunity to finish a B.S. in accounting through Regis University, which qualified me to sit for the CPA exam, I would certainly be working for someone else and dreaming of how things could be better. Paid content.


Dakota, and also in Campbell County, before becoming a defense attorney specializing in criminal law. Williams said she can’t imagine practicing law anywhere else. Her clients are hardworking people who deserve the best legal representation possible. Now, with new offices beside the courthouse on Gillette Main Street, she said, “I will analyze your case from top to bottom and give you a realistic expectation of the risks, so you know what to expect.”

She loves Gillette and said that, “Having worked in other communities makes you realize and appreciate what Campbell County has to offer.” Most of Christina’s free time, like any working mother, is spent with her 10-year-old son, whose newfound passion is snowboarding. She’s proud to say that he’s now the sixth generation born and raised in Wyoming.



rowing up in Crook County, Christina Williams said both of her grandmothers set the bar pretty high by earning bachelor’s degrees in an era when women typically didn’t consider higher education as an option. Following suit, she attended Black Hills State University to obtain a degree in education. After a year of teaching, she decided to go back to college and become an attorney.



It was a career she’d never given a second thought until her sister gave her a little nudge by heading into law school herself. “That’s the best thing I ever did,” she said. What she found was a previously untapped love of both constitutional and criminal law. Before opening her own practice in 2013, her first job as an attorney was working for a judge. From there, she moved on and worked as a prosecutor in Pennington County, South

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Strength The strongest woman I’ve ever met was taken from me far too early. She changed oil and ran large equipment during the day and came home to nurture and care for our family at night. I lost my mother at 18. The following months swept me into a flood of emotions and difficult changes. I became a young mother, a full-time student and employee.

Natalie Daly Agent

The first 12 months of adulthood, while the most difficult, forced me to dig deep and find grit and tenacity. I decided to carry on my mother’s legacy. A legacy not of wealth but of honesty, integrity and perseverance. Fast-forwarding almost 20 years, I’m now a small business owner, mother of three and a wife of over 17 years. I attribute my success to those defining moments. The desire to make my mother proud energized me through my undergraduate program, as well as a series of graduate courses. With each step, I felt her strength and support. There is power in a story, but there is movement in leadership. When you enter my agency, you will be greeted with kindness, integrity and a commitment to provide exceptional service. I’m honored to be a part of this community and relish the opportunity to pay these gifts forward.


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n 2004, my family had a decision to make. I worked at a local coal mine and my husband, George was employed in the energy industry. At the time, it appeared that our work schedules would seriously impact our time with our kids. We chose to make the most of the time we spent together and decided to purchase Gillette Printing & Engraving Company. I left the role of employee and stepped into the role of business owner and employer. Having been



on both sides of the fence, I feel has helped me tremendously in navigating the day-today operations. George has been my strongest support system, even while continuing his career in energy. I’ve learned that owning a business is not always a walk in the park. It’s about hard work, long hours, commitment and patience. But, it is even more so about professional and personal successes, accomplishments, and relationships that are built within the community.

I have been blessed with strong role models in my life. The first, my mom, who raised me and three older brothers as a single parent. She never shied away from the responsibility, and, in fact, worked a full-time job while most times holding down at least two other part-time jobs to supplement her income. She instilled that work ethic in us: work hard, be honest, and act with integrity. Although she has been gone over 20 years, I never lose sight of the fact that I will always be her daughter and to live my life in a way that would make her proud. I also want to recognize Susan Jerke as another strong role model. Through the process of purchasing Gillette Printing & Engraving Company from Susan, I grew to admire her and realized that she had set the bar for me to emulate in my day-to-day business operations. Over the past 14 1/2 years, Susan has been a mentor, providing logical thinking, education, and the occasional sounding board. A defining moment for me was when she told me she was proud of me. Imagine that! In our time as owners, we’ve expanded the business to include engraving services and vinyl products. As proud as I am of these additions, it could not have been possible without my team! It’s our staff that has made all the difference at Gillette Printing & Engraving Company. Their willingness to embrace change and be experts in different products is what makes the company a success. In all these years, we’ve never missed a deadline! It’s their professional commitment to customer service and quality, as well as their willingness to do what it takes to get a project completed. The staff is the true heart of Gillette Printing and Engraving Company. Paid content.

Let’s Talk About:

Kids & Money


ecently, one of my favorite kids has become completely obsessed with money. He enjoys most old and obscure things, actually (how cool is that?), but dated coins and foreign currency especially. It began last year when he started collecting and playing with coins and cash. At the time, we used this newfound financial interest of his to our advantage and began to practice grouping and counting. He was learning and he loved it!

He’s become so consumed by money—his new favorite thing—that he wants to go with me to the bank now and hopes to visit the Denver Mint. He got a wallet at age 5, and he even asked us for a small safe at Christmas. (He got it.)

“KINDER RICH” These days, he earns an allowance for washing the dishes, which is a godsend after a long day of work, followed by housework, homework help, and cooking. For the most part, he saves every

penny. I don’t even want to tell you how much he’s accumulated. (Let’s just say, we joke he’s “kindergarten rich.”) He wants to know how much things cost, how much is in my purse, my bank accounts, and on my paychecks. He’s curious about how much others make, as well, along with the contrast between my earnings and, for example, those of other classmates’ parents or his teachers. He’s not the first kid to love money and he won’t be the last. But, while we want him to know and MARCH / APRIL 2019


How to Teach Pre-Schoolers & Kindergarteners About Money

appreciate that his Hot Wheels cars and tracks cost money, and that dad and I work hard to make that money, we also don’t want him to fixate on it or let it become what’s most important. After all, money can’t buy you love... or happiness.

big-picture financial concepts like saving and spending money. Still, we’re not teaching practical financial basics in grade school. So, if you don’t teach your kids how to manage money, who will?



J-Lo told me at a young age that her “Love Don’t Cost a Thing.” My dad reinforced that message in telling me often, “Stephanie, the best things in life are free.” And, everyone knows that “money doesn’t grow on trees” but, it does come freely from an ATM and, at a young age, that can be confusing. So, how do we un-muddy the waters? We can all agree that we want our kids to understand the value of money, and it’s important that we do so without allowing them to be overcome by it. In fact, experts say children as young as 3 years old can grasp

According to Beth Kobliner, author of the New York Times bestseller Get a Financial Life, parents are the top influencers of their children’s financial behaviors, so it’s up to us to raise a generation of mindful consumers, investors, savers, and givers. I don’t know about you, but we plan to give our kids every available advantage. Here’s some tips from money man Dave Ramsey to give your kids a head start at a young age. By: Stephanie L. Scarcliff


Use a glass jar or clear piggy bank to save – it’s easier to see the progress.


Wait for it — eliminate impulse buys by asking that your child sleep on it when finding something they want to buy.


Give it up — once your kids start making a little money, be sure to stress the importance of giving back. It’s an opportunity to teach and show your child that giving not only has a positive effect on the people you give to, but the giver too.



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ELITE 8 By Jen Kocher | Photos Adam Ritterbush

Humble, heartfelt and hard-working are three descriptors that most accurately represent this year’s ELITE 8. Without exception, when contacted about the award each asked “why me?” This quality pretty much explains why out of 45 nominees, these eight rose to the top of the list. That, and the fact that they are living by example, quietly, notably and without much fanfare. We’re proud to put these ladies in the limelight and give them a big, nonverbal round of applause for inspiring and supporting other women through their daily actions and lives.






Shannon Keri Shannon has had a big year. After learning she’d been awarded Wyoming’s National Distinguished Principal of the Year less than a month ago, the Stocktrail Elementary School principal is once again reeling from winning yet another distinction, which admittedly, she almost mistook for spam. But like everything else, the native Texan takes it all in stride as she apologizes for being slightly late and out of breath, after dashing back to her office from reading in a classroom. Reading to students is one of her favorite things to do, which regrettably, she doesn’t get to do often enough given the other demands of her job. “This might sound strange,” she confessed, “but I never wanted to be a principal.” She just loves teaching, and kept getting promoted, whether she liked it or not. She blames her organizational skills and her hard-nosed drive to push herself as much as possible. Truth be told, she’d prefer to be back in the classroom but that’s not how her career has worked out as she seems destined for this position. It’s a pattern that has followed her for the duration of her career. Oddly enough, she didn’t set out to be a teacher either and had absolutely no interest in working with children as a young woman, let alone having any. Originally from New Caney, Texas, Keri’s dad, a contractor, pushed her to be self-sufficient and learn to stand on her own. This meant learning to speak Spanish in a state with a predominantly Latino population and encouraging her to figure out how to change the oil and tires on a car before

getting her driver’s license. After high school, she went to the University of Texas in Austin, where she earned a degree in journalism and public relations. Her first job in PR cured her of any interest in spinning words for other people. Instead, after teaching a multi-cultural class to seventh-graders, she realized that she had an affinity for not only teaching but for kids as well. So, she got out of the PR racket, went back to school and earned her teaching degree. Her first job was in Houston before teaching kindergarten and English as a Second Language (ESL) in a small town along the Texas/Mexico border, where she spent several pivotal years. She enjoyed the students and people she met and the diversity of living in a border town. At the time, turnover created several openings in administration and those in charge kept promoting Keri. She was also married and had three kids. When the marriage didn’t work out, she decided to go back to school once again and earn her master’s degree, and finally her doctorate at Texas A&M, all while working full-time and raising her kids. Looking back, she thinks she probably didn’t sleep much during those years, though at the time never really gave it much thought. It was just what

she needed to do and so she did it. Eventually, when she started dating a guy she knew from college who had moved to Alaska, both refused to move either to Texas or Alaska, so they split the difference and settled on Laramie, Wyoming. Here, she took a job as principal, and later, accepted the position at Stocktrail, both of which were lightyears apart from her experiences in Texas. “By comparison,” she said, “the challenges in Wyoming are small in contrast to Texas, and we’re extremely lucky here.” Nonetheless, introducing students to concepts like global citizenry and getting them prepared for the tech-savvy future are huge goals of hers, which is why she’s grateful to the school board for promoting the dual-language immersion program at Stocktrail. “The idea was theirs,” she said. “I just happened to have the right skills to introduce it, and once again, the stars aligned.” MARCH / APRIL 2019


Janaia Hyland

There’s a photograph in Sgt. Janaia Hyland’s office that reminds her why she comes to work each day. A smiling mother and daughter beam down at her from the bulletin board preserved in a moment of mother-daughter silliness and bonding. That the mother was killed by her husband in front of the daughter during a domestic



violence dispute resonates with Janaia as both a mother and a Campbell County Sherriff ’s Investigator, whose primary mission is to protect and serve and keep people like that mother safe. This is one of the reasons why she has devoted her life to law enforcement, and why, even on the bad days, she remains dedicated to the job. “I like to remember what I’m fighting for,” she said, as she discussed her long career in law enforcement. Growing up in Gillette with a step-father also in law enforcement, Janaia always thought she would seek a career in law enforcement and

was interested in the DEA or FBI at an early age. At age 19, her career took off when her mom told her about a job opening as a detention officer at the Campbell County Detention Center. At the time, she’d just given birth to her daughter and would learn to juggle motherhood as well as the demands of her new career. Janaia started by attending the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy in Douglas. From there she worked her way up from detention officer, to patrol deputy, and general investigator. Other positions she held include D.A.R.E., field training officer (F.T.O.), F.T.O. manager, F.T.O. coordinator and

also an assignment on the Task Force as a special agent with the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI). Janaia became the first female patrol sergeant for the Campbell County Sheriff ’s Office in 2011. “The only thing I haven’t done is dispatch,” she said, joking that under her auspices it would have likely been a disaster. She spent a couple of hours filling in and remembers messing up all the various codes and signals to call out different departments. “They were happy when my shift ended.” Over the years, she’s had some tough days, including an incident where she was shot at during a

chase. Her patrol truck took several rounds and the perpetrator was eventually arrested. By staying calm and keeping a cool head, she said she convinced him to surrender, with the help of a highway patrol trooper who’d responded to her call for backup. “Close calls like that make you reflect on it,” she said, with regard to the dangerous nature of the job. Those are the occasions, she noted, where God shows up and faith helps to get you through. In the end, it’s the victims – particularly the children – that keep any doubts at bay. That and the endless variety of tasks and the piecing together of puzzles that makes the job so interesting for her. And

for those who think the day-to-day is anything like an episode of "Forensic Files" are sorely mistaken, she joked. Typically, cases take much longer to solve and lack the high adrenaline. Sometimes, she admits it can be a little unnerving being a law enforcement officer in a small community, especially when her children were little and would point out people staring at her while shopping or eating dinner. On some occasions, former convicts have walked up to her and asked if she remembered them, only to thank her for helping them turn their lives around. “It’s always amazing to think you’ve had a positive impact on someone,” she said. Right now, her 26-year-old daughter is considering leaving her career in banking in Indiana and returning home to follow in her mother’s footsteps. “I see what I had put my own mother through,” she laughed, though admitted as unnerving as it might be, she’d be proud to see her daughter join the force. She appreciates seeing more women enter the field and has enjoyed having a hand in mentoring and training them. Today, there are a lot more women in uniform than when she joined the force in 1993, back when she felt she had more to prove as one of the few women in a largely, maledominated field. As far as the future goes, Janaia toys with the idea of one day retiring to join her husband, also a former CCSO Deputy, who has since returned to his ranching roots. She’s not much for cowboying, she admitted, though she’d love to have spare time to work on her quilting skills and spend more time with family. In the meantime, she’s content doing what she feels compelled to do – serving her community. MARCH / APRIL 2019





McDonald Where some people’s lives follow a straight trajectory using goals as stepping stones, Stacie McDonald has wandered along a circuitous path guided by instinct and curiosity. There are no neat lines connecting her resume with her career, though the one common thread in all of her endeavors is an emphasis on building relationships and trying new things. She guesses this probably began right after high school when she unexpectedly married her boyfriend, who joined the Marines, which landed the newlywed couple in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The base was a hodgepodge of soldiers and regional workers from around the U.S., Cuba, Jamaica, Barbados and the Philippines, and though their lives were contained to the base, it felt a lot like traveling the globe. It was in Cuba where her curiosity first took flight and exposed her to new cultures and opened her eyes to all kinds of new possibilities. Originally from Gillette, her sole jobs had included some part-time gigs at the grocery store and as a car hop at Bronco Billy’s. And no, she didn’t wear roller skates. “That’s the first question everyone always asks,” she said with a laugh. When the couple returned to Gillette two years later, she took a chance on a safety job in a machine shop, helping workers navigate occupational safety, and though, admittedly, it might sound a bit dull to be the taskmaster urging people to follow OSHA rules, for her it led to new

questions about the roots of behavior and what makes people choose to act in a high- or low-risk behavior space. “I’m not great at rules myself, so I was very interested in trying to figure out why people choose to break them,” she said. The trick was to figure out what behaviors or inner beliefs drove them to work outside of requirements, even when it compromised their safety, she explained, and once she figured out their rationale, she was then able to support them in thinking about why getting home safely was important to them personally. She realized her strength was more in helping companies think about this behavior concept than understand how to apply regulations, so she moved to an outside safety support role for a safety non-profit. Later, she took a job at a startup coal enhancement project north of Gillette. It was a new adventure, but as happens sometimes, the experiment didn’t pan out, and the company closed, leaving Stacie and the others with their last paychecks in hand. Stacie had been involved in volunteering for local non-profit boards like CASA and the Wyoming Women’s Foundation but hadn’t spent much time working with those affected through the boards she served. Another volunteer suggested she fill her unemployment with a position at the Salvation Army, warning her that the money would be terrible, but that she would learn a ton. This seemed like a new adventure. In her new role, she met and worked with those struggling with a lack of resources and medical or financial crises, which often meant clients couldn’t pay the rent or keep the lights on. This was the beginning of her learning to stand alongside those struggling, instead of in an ‘us and

them’ capacity, and Stacie was hooked. A better paying safety job eventually drew her away, marrying industry and community work with a public affairs position with Devon Energy’s Western Division. The extensive travel required was tough on her family, though, so Stacie moved to consulting, doing a little safety work, a little PR, some blogging, and even some lobbying work. When Stacie heard about the program director opening at Climb Wyoming, she kept telling everyone she knew what a great job it was and how they should apply, realizing later that she was really talking to herself. Having grown up in a decidedly middleclass home, the family’s security had been, like many, affected in the wake of a bust in the oil field. Her father’s oil field company was hit hard, and at age 14, both she and her twin sister got part-time jobs to offset those extra things teenagers need. More than any other job she’s had, she learned so much from working with these women and families, who taught her much more than the information and skills she shared with them. This job forever altered her outlook on the world. “It made me much more self-aware and I learned to view people without judgement and not through my own lens,” she said. After five years in the post, she decided it was time to move back to PR work and was surprised to see a job in the area pop up. It felt like a sign. As the Director of Public Relations for Visionary Broadband, she found herself building relationships and sharing messages, showcasing her natural knack for storytelling. “I always say I have a lot of tabs open,” she said with a laugh, “but I seem to land where I’m meant to be.”




Elizabeth Wood

When Liz was 20, she watched her grandfather die. It was a moment that indelibly marked her life and charted the course of her career. She remembers standing by his bed in the nursing home as he wheezed his final breaths while nurses obliviously whizzed by in the hallway without stopping by to help him. Unbeknownst to her, her grandfather had signed a do not resuscitate order, so the nurses were technically just doing their duties. But for Liz, who had no idea what was going on at the time, it was a frighteningly vulnerable experience. It was then that she decided to become a nurse and take care of other people. “I thought, ‘screw that,’” she said. “I didn’t want anyone else to have to go through that again. If they had just stopped by to explain what was going on, it would have made all the difference.” Nearly two decades later, Liz has finally realized her long-time dream of becoming an emergency room (ER) nurse and currently works at Campbell County Health. Although, it did take her a while to get here. Originally from Gillette, she went to Western Dakota Tech after graduating from high school, where she earned an associate’s degree in machinery and welding. And though the degree had no bearing on her professional life, she still loves welding and incorporates those skills into art and other projects.

After high school, Liz moved to Rapid City, South Dakota, where she worked for 14 years as an aide for mentally handicapped people at Regional Health. From there, she moved back to Gillette and started nursing school with two small children. A go-getter by nature, Liz ignored her husband Grant’s generous encouragement to quit her job and focus on school full-time. Instead, she took a part-time job with the Campbell County EMS ambulance crew, a job she still does today. All her life, she’s enjoyed taking care of people and makes it a point to care for people like her grandmother did. Liz’s grandmother was a hugely influential figure in her life. “She’s always encouraged me to follow my dreams and be whoever I wanted to be,” Liz said. It’s a process that is still evolving, Liz admits. She’s busy taking classes again for various nursing certifications and is contemplating grad school to become a nurse educator. “When I’m 70, teaching might be an option,” she laughed, “when I can no longer get around.” There’s a serious underpinning beneath her glibness as a result of a recent health scare that proved to Liz, that despite all her medical training, her own life can also hang in the balance. Just over two years ago, she had been hiking with her family in Yellowstone when she tripped on a rock and broke her ankle. Ever the adrenaline-junkie, stoic health care provider, she snapped it back in place and carried on. “We’d just gotten there,” she said, “and there was still a lot of hiking to do, and I didn’t want to ruin everyone else’s experience.” So, ignoring the pain, she continued on and finally, on the trip home, broke down and agreed to go to the ER in Billings. First, however, she wanted to take her kids back-to-school shopping, but luckily for her in this case, the stores were closed and so there was no side trip on the way to

the ER. The doctor booted her broken bone and she headed home, where she decided she’d skip the healing process and get back to work. She talked her boss into letting her buzz around on a knee scooter, and it was only when her liver and kidneys started to fail that she had no choice but to slow down. Literally. After being life flown to Denver, little of which she remembers, Liz spent three months recovering on a mandatory hiatus. Now, months later, as if making up for lost time, the overachiever is soaking in all the information she can get as she adds even more letters behind her name. Mentoring nursing students and others new to the job is another facet that drives her and appeals to her care-giving, nurturing side. Outside of work, her family is paramount and together they love hunting, hiking and enjoying the outdoors, where she spends every spare second she has. Like her grandmother, she enjoys hearing her children talk about their futures and everything they can accomplish, including maybe, like their mom, even becoming a nurse. “I can’t imagine doing anything else,” she said. “I’m exactly where I’d like to be.”






Oberlander There’s a lot of things that Janell loves about her job as the vice president of Gillette College, but no doubt her favorite is watching students walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. “People’s lives are changed by education,” she said with a big smile. “So much hard work and dedication has gone into the culmination of that moment, and everyone has had some role in helping that student reach this achievement. It’s humbling to be a part of that moment.” For her, higher education is much more than earning a piece of paper, but rather, a way to better lives and change communities. She points to Gillette, her hometown, after years of living away, as an example. When she left here years ago, the college was just a couple of small buildings and the town was not nearly as busy and thriving as it is today. She’s been back for only about six months and is pleasantly

surprised by its growth and bustling economy, much as the college. “It’s great to see Gillette investing in itself,” she said. Likewise, being nominated for this award was equally surprising and gratifying for Janell. She’s been mentored by some wonderful women in her career, who took the time to invest in her and push her to reach goals. “Women are much stronger when they circle around each other and hold each other up,” she said, adding that much of her accomplishments today are a result of those female alliances and partnerships. Equally gratifying is finding herself back in her hometown and working at Gillette College. For as long as she can remember, she’s wanted to work in higher education as a counselor. This goal was further cemented by her own experience as an undergraduate at Montana Tech in Butte, Montana. Back then, she was active in organizing activities on campus, bringing acts like comedian Carrot Top and ventriloquist Jeffrey Dunham to perform on campus. Though many might find the planning of such events overwhelmingly stressful, for Janell managing all the little details and logistics is part of the fun. After graduating with her master’s degree in counseling from Idaho State University, she returned to Gillette where she was executive director at Gillette Abuse Refuge Foundation, a position that she found particularly rewarding and eye opening.

“I learned the strength that people had,” she said, “and how important it is to embrace each other and be there to help.” After one year on the job, she left to return to her alma mater as a counselor and later took a position as dean of student services at Western Dakota Tech in Rapid City, South Dakota, where she helped students and veterans find jobs. She also spent a stint at Colorado Northwestern Community College in the position of vice president of the Craig campus and student affairs, and eventually, returned last year after accepting the vice president position. As a wife and mother of two daughters, one of whom is currently attending school in Butte where she was born, Janell looks forward to a new chapter of her life and once again working with students at a two-year school. The smaller campus and student population allows her to get to know more students, and in her words, “watch them develop and grow.” This is what she enjoys most about her job as she too prepares to return to school for a low-residency program to earn her Doctor of Education, Leadership for Educational Equality. “I’ll be studying right alongside them,” she said. Looking back on her career, she credits her mother and grandmother, who grew up in a farming community and quit school after the eighth grade. Both women encouraged her to reach her goals and dreams, and she feels lucky to have such a supportive and loving family. “I had strong women standing in my corner,” she said, and it’s this gift that she hopes to pass along.




Barlow With the temperature hovering in the low 20s under a bright blue, sunny sky, Kelly Barlow jokes that it’s practically a heat wave as she stands in the snow in her front yard of her sprawling ranch property, 30 miles west of town. One of her border collies had recently had a litter of puppies, who were yawling and tumbling into each other as they competed to climb up her leg. Her husband Eric, a state representative, has just returned home from this year’s legislative session, which provides her with a welcome reprieve from all the ranch chores she’s done in his stead, along with her part-time job as a case manager with the Campbell County School District. On top of her day job, she and Eric also run the family ranch and their Gourmet Lamb of Wyoming company. Despite the long hours and non-stop chores, Kelly smiled graciously as she leaned down to peel a puppy off her shoe and lead her visitors into the living room. With a faint trace of a southern accent, which she has worked hard to tamp down, she talks about her childhood and early years growing up in the South. Originally from Mississippi, Kelly moved around quite a bit with her father, who worked in the construction field and kept the family transient, including a year she spent in Wright in the 80s, which back then was little more than a man camp. It was this year in ninth grade that she met and dated Eric, and also became a “juvenile delinquent.”

She wants to make it clear that meeting Eric had nothing to do with her acting out. In fact, he was a good all-American kid living out on the ranch. Rather, she was misbehaving in response to her mother’s promise that they’d never move again. After 16 schools, the 14-year-old had pretty much had it, and being in Wright, on top of the daily bus ride into Twin Spruce, did not sit well with the rebellious teenager. “I was a pretty bad kid there for a while,” she said, and eventually got sent to live with her older sister in Memphis, Tennessee. After graduating from high school early, she went to work as a secretary at age 16 at a conveyer company, where she was eventually promoted to outside sales and sold machinery to different manufacturers, including a bubble gum factory and one that made coffins for children. It was her first foray into the real world, which taught her a thing or two, including the novelty of being a Southerner. When a customer called and said how much they loved to talk to her because of her accent, she worked hard to eliminate it. And though she’s successfully shortened up her vowels and flattened down the elongated pauses between words, there’s still a residual graciousness to everything she does, including her two-handed handshake that immediately makes a stranger feel at ease. But, back then, she didn’t want to be pigeonholed either by her accent or gender. After a few years on the job, she decided to go to college, and though her boss supported her decision and even offered to pay if she’d go for engineering, she decided to follow her own dreams of becoming a doctor. However, after attending a seminar on cystic fibrosis, it dawned on her the responsibility medicine would demand on her time and would

eliminate her ability to one day have a family. So, she changed course and became an elementary school teacher, and despite Eric’s proposal years earlier, she finally accepted only after she finished her student teaching, and then eventually returned to get her master’s degree. Of all the accomplishments in her life, her two children and family are definitely on the top of her list. As is her faith in God and giving back to her community. “My faith is definitely a constant thread in my life,” she said, as she ticks off a list of her various volunteer activities, which to her go hand in hand with her faith. That, and also helping other women to succeed. Along with her position as president of the Wool Growers Association, she also serves on the Climb Wyoming board and on the board for Gillette College, along with volunteering at the soup kitchen among other non-profits. Climb in particular, and helping women break the cycle of poverty and get back on their feet, has had an integral impact on her life, which goes back to her roots as a Southerner. So many southern women are dependent on men, she pointed out, and even her own mother, who cut wood with chain saws and did other manly chores, talked about roles that women should and shouldn’t play. Seeing this doublestandard play out in her own life made her even more hyperconscious of supporting women and helping them stand on their own two feet. For this reason, being nominated for the ELITE 8 Award resonated with her on a personal level. “I was pretty humbled and overwhelmed and wondered what on earth I have done that was so worthy,” she said with a laugh. As far as she’s concerned, she just does things that need to be done, as in, “if not me, then who?”






Wagner Katrin Wagner is not used to being praised publicly, and admittedly is much more comfortable standing in the back of a room watching someone else get an award. As far as she’s concerned, giving back to the community is just part of what she naturally feels compelled to do, without any fuss or fanfare. Sitting in a leather chair in front of the fireplace in the lobby of Pinnacle Bank where she handles mortgage loans and was recently promoted to vice president of the local branch, the 38-year-old mother of three and German transplant reflects on her decade-plus in Gillette,

her husband’s hometown. The two met when he was stationed in Germany and got married and had their first two children before deciding to head back to the United States. When her family found out they were moving, they worried about how she’d adapt to her new homeland, not to mention in the least populated state in the nation. Originally, the family had moved to Buffalo, where she thought they could just rent a place in the suburbs, which was when she got her first taste of life in rural Wyoming. “He (her husband - Jeremiah) explained that there were no suburbs and you can’t just rent a place so easily, so we decided to buy a small house,” she said. A year later, when she announced they were moving to Gillette, many people expressed their sympathy that she would be moving to such a “dirty place.” She found Gillette to be quite the opposite, however, and was amazed by the quality of the schools, the stellar activities and classes offered at the Rec Center, and the fact that it was such a bustling city with so much economic activity. She took to her new life immediately, and after staying home following the birth of their son, she decided to return to banking, which she’d trained for right after high school. In Germany, she’d worked in the loan department, but when she took a position at Pinnacle Bank, she started on the teller line and worked her way up. In retrospect, it was the perfect way for her to learn the U.S. banking industry, which was very different from Germany banking, where checks had been rendered obsolete by the wiring of money and other differences that took time and practice to get the hang of.

Almost immediately, she started volunteering her time to various groups and serving on boards. Katrin is currently a board member of the Y.E.S. House Foundation, Chair of the Campbell County Chamber of Commerce Energizers, member of Women in Business, Member of St. Mathew’s Church Financial Council as well as a host family for visiting female soccer players. In the past, she’s also been both president and vice-president for the network chapter BNI Success Unlimited, board member for Energy Capital Habitat for Humanity, Gillette Main Street and also a Rotary member, among others. In Germany, such organizations are government-funded, Katrin pointed out, but here are much more reliant on donations and volunteers. She’s always been outgoing, so being active in the community is a great outlet. She is the social one in the marriage, she joked, as her husband is much more reserved, though actively supports her in all of her endeavors. Her job in banking perfectly combines her duality of customer service and number crunching, which she’s always enjoyed. She likes being able to form relationships with customers and helping people get loans by reaching various milestones. “There’s much more to banking than just signing loans,” she said. “I like to help people reach their goals and be a part of their progress. It’s exciting to see them realize their dreams.” As for her own dreams, one of the most impactful and emotional days for her was that day in November two years ago when she was naturalized at the court house in Gillette. Though one’s citizenship is often something one takes for granted, for her it was a life-defining moment. She was overwhelmed by the support she received from her family, friends, co-workers and the community. “This kind of completed me, as strange as that might sound,” she said, her eyes filling with tears as she remembered her emotions on that coveted day. “I kept my German citizenship as this is and will always be part of who I am. But, all those years I lived here, I always felt like I was not quite part of it all. The citizenship was the missing piece of the puzzle.” MARCH / APRIL 2019




Corkery As the granddaughter of two Norwegian grandmothers, Dara Corkery feels uncomfortable talking about herself. Humility has been ingrained in her, she explained, and any kind of praise or spotlight feels unnervingly braggadocios. Instead, she’d like to talk about the real doers and shakers in Gillette, who in her mind have singlehandedly helped to shape this town. Her own story is kinda boring, she insisted. She grew up in South Dakota, dropped out of Black Hills State University and moved to Gillette in the 70s when the economy was in full bloom. The move came at the suggestion of her father, who had just relocated the family to Wyoming. Her first job here was working as an aide in a nursing home, which perhaps more than any other job, was the most instructive. Not only did she experience some of the best and worst days of her life, but she also came face-to-face with the vulnerabilities of the minds and bodies while learning the importance of compassion and care. “It was a profound experience,” she said, remembering one elderly patient with M.S. who had worked as the editor of Glamour Magazine and whose mind was still sharp as a tack as her body continued to fail her.

Other jobs included working for a travel agency, being a stay-at-home mom, and later working as a library aide in her children’s elementary school, a job that was perfect for her at the time. After retiring 15 years ago, she began painting seriously, mainly water colors, and serving on the board of directors, volunteering and teaching classes at “AVA” (Advocacy for Visual Arts) Community Art Center, which she continues to do today. It’s organizations like AVA, Council of Community Services, the Y.E.S. House, Campbell County Library Foundation, Climb, church groups and other nonprofits that she’d prefer to highlight, as well as some of the influential local women who have and continue to inspire her and make Gillette such a wonderful place to live today. Women like Cynthia Saunders, Dorothy Carter, Judith Simple, Leta Tanner, Sandy Daly, Susan Hladky and Alice Bratton among others. These are the women who sat on boards and whose names periodically turned up in news stories and who made a point of showing up at meetings, activities, and working hard to bring arts and opportunities to the community.

When she moved here in the 70s, Gillette was just a two-stoplight, wild boom town. It was fun, don’t get her wrong, she was 21. But in the ensuing years, she’s enjoyed watching it transform into a thriving community full of wonderful people. “I know this sounds ironic,” she said, “but I love the energy of this community.” Otherwise, she said modestly, her own life is pretty boring. She and her husband, who is also retired, travel a bit and take care of their special-needs daughter. They also visit regularly with their son, an English teacher, in Guernsey, spend a lot of time at AVA, and are passionate supporters of the arts. And if the mark of one’s character is gauged by the depth of their friendships, then Dara ranks at the top of the list. Many of her friendships date back to three decades ago, including members of her book club. “I have been blessed to meet so many wonderful people,” she said, once again ducking the spotlight.







The Behind the Brush Q &A with the owner of Bonita Beauty


ezly Delgado has always loved being around makeup. She grew up watching her mom and aunts getting ready and, as a child, remembers the feeling of awe that they inspired in her. She remembers wanting to make other women feel and look beautiful, too, and that feeling never really left her. Fast forward to years later, and Lezly is doing just that. Recently, we had the opportunity to see her in action and ask her about her successful small business, Bonita Beauty Makeup, located inside Lil Tiffany’s Spa.

Q: How did you get into the makeup industry? A: It happened organically. I was living in Hot

Springs, South Dakota, and I had made some creative friends, who would put together photo shoots for their businesses and for fun. I was invited to do their makeup, and one of the business owners, who was also a friend, suggested that I pursue makeup professionally.

Q: What made you decide to pursue it?

A: I have always surrounded myself with creative

Photo: Hayden Esau1 MARCH / APRIL 2019


A: Our facial products are made from all-natural

women. I have always felt in awe of all of their creativity and how they were able to make a living doing what they love. Connecting and networking with other women in local business really motivated me to go forward with my career.

ingredients. They are gluten-free and are plantand fruit-based, so I am able to provide that unique service to my clients, especially the ones with sensitive skin issues and allergies to certain chemicals, perfumes, or gluten.

Q: What is the reward for

you in helping women and being a small-business owner?

Q: What should you ask before your first facial?

A: The reward for me is in seeing my clients feel

I always recommend that clients be very specific about any allergies they may have. I also tell them to ask around because word of mouth is a great way to find a knowledgeable professional. Lastly, I ask what specific concerns they would like me to address during the facial, such as, dry skin, acne, anti-aging, etc.


confident about themselves. I always want my clients to leave feeling happy.

Q: So how did you end up in Gillette?


The company I was working for was bought out, and I was presented with a choice to either move with them or lose my job. So, I went to Houston with the company for three months to help train new employees and that is when I really decided to go for it and start my makeup business. I had family living in Gillette and decided to move and make my start.

“I always believe the customer is right and I always want my clients to leave feeling happy about the experience.” ~ Lezly Delgado



What services do you provide at Bonita Beauty Makeup?


I provide makeup services for brides, bridal parties, boudoir shoots, prom, family or individuals who are having their photos taken. I also teach classes one-on-one or small group. I am also the aesthetician at Lil Tiffany’s Spa, where I offer personalized spa facials.

@bonitabeautymakeup. Photographer: @dyann_diercks. Hair: @ brittneystark_colorbar. Dress: @doragracebridal. Right: Photo by Megan Huber.



What does the future look like for you as the owner of Bonita Beauty Makeup?

Q: What really pushed your A: small business forward? I did not give up when others said I wouldn’t be able to make a living as a makeup artist. In 2016, I was contacted by a video production company out of Oklahoma. They were hired to produce work for Springfield Armory and asked if I could be the key makeup artist for the project. I accepted, and with the money I made from that job, I was able to fulfill my dream of going to beauty school and becoming a licensed aesthetician.

Above: Cheyenne Buyert, Makeup: @bonitabeautymakeup. Top: Makeup:


Q: Tell me a little bit about the gluten-f ree facial products you use.

This year is full of new projects and collaborations. I will be working to expand my editorial makeup portfolio, which has been one of my ongoing and long-term goals.

“The longer I am here, the more I see my future in Gillette. My dream is to mentor other girls who want to be in the makeup industry. There is more reward in sharing the knowledge with others than only doing it for myself professionally. I would love to see a local makeup community here that supports each other.� ~ Lezly Delgado

Lezly openly admits she struggled with acne in her teenage years, which is why she is so passionate about helping others feel beautiful, no matter what type of skincare struggle they may be facing. She can even help those going through cancer and is looking forward to getting oncology certified, so she can provide service for cancer survivors. By: Megan K. Huber

Top: Photo by Adriana McCauslin. Bottom: Photo by Megan Huber.






the new black


ecently, I found myself surrounded by some of the most spectacular women I know. Among them, a corporate strategist, a doctor, business owner and the fearless leader of an exclusive “tequila book club.” All of these accomplished Wyoming women are mothers (some grandmothers), and most are hard-working moms. We shared wine and talked about our lives, work and passions. I was not surprised to hear about their children and grandchildren’s successes over their own, but I was intrigued to find that, at one point or another, each of these celebrated high achievers— incredibly strong, successful business women—downplayed one or more of their hard-earned professional achievements. Which got me thinking: Are Campbell County women prone to diluting their awesome? Or is there something in the water that breeds out their need for recognition?

In the West, we tend to value modesty and collaboration over speaking up and self-promoting. This applies to both men and women. It’s a rare and intangible quality, really. I like to think of it as class. But we live in the age of the “selfie” and a culture wrought with subconsciously telling

women that they cannot achieve at the same level, professionally, as their male counterparts. So, as women in the workforce, how do we push forward?

How do we rise up? There I was, surrounded by both immense success and the subtle beauty of humility, when it hit me: Humility is the new black, you guys. But can being humble actually make you a more powerful leader? I believe the answer is yes! Go back and reread the powerful stories of our ELITE 8 Award winners on page 30. If these women and their lives speak to you and inspire you... I couldn’t agree more. Then, pause to consider that each of the eight women awarded exercised an awe-inspiring, modern-day hyperhumility, despite the enormity of their own accomplishments, and looked to acknowledge and encourage the successes of others over their own. If that’s not sexy, I don’t know what is. By: Stephanie L. Scarcliff



10 Habits of


ormones affect us all. And because our bodies are always changing and evolving, assisting them through every phase of life is key. Now is the time to take our health by the horns and rise to the occasion by honoring our bodies and the amazing work they do for us.


Maintain Steady Blood Sugar Levels

Gain control over hormone health and maintain a healthy weight. Try going low-carb. Carbohydrates (carbs) are what cause blood sugar to rise. One way to achieve blood sugar stability is to eat fewer refined carbs. 2. Up Your Omega 3 Intake Omega 3’s are not only heart healthy, but also help regulate our hormones, not to mention give us glowing skin and shiny hair. They are antiinflammatory, promote good brain health, boost mood, and reduce symptoms and the progression of many diseases including diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, autoimmune disease and more. 3. Get More B and D Vitamins B’s are our energy powerhouse. They also support memory and brain function. Low vitamin D levels can leave us feeling down and at a greater risk of a heart attack, heart failure, stroke, diabetes or high blood pressure later in life. Get/ take your vitamins, ladies!



4. Monitor Your Iron Iron levels are imperative to keeping your hormones in tip-top shape. As women, throughout our lives, we may encounter low iron levels, which can impact energy levels, cause hair loss or easy bruising, and create anemia. If you experience any of these symptoms you may have an iron deficiency, and it may be a good idea to have your levels checked through a monthly blood draw panel or health screening.

Drink Red Raspberry Leaf Tea


This tea does wonders for women’s health. I use it regularly. Throughout history, red raspberry leaf tea has been used to support a healthy uterus. Women of all ages and stages, as well as, pregnant women, can benefit from this herbal tea and its ability to tone the uterus. 6. Adaptogens Stress has a huge impact on our health and hormones as women. Holy Basil and the herb Ashwaganda are two of my favorites. Both available in tea form, they are easy to take along in your bag or purse and enjoy a cup in the afternoon at work or at home. 7. Book That Annual Annual wellness exams are important for our overall health and wellness. Many new exciting options are becoming available such as thermography and 4-D Mammograms. Make sure to ask your physician about them, along with new guidelines for paps.

Healthy Women 8. Download the My Flo App Statistics show that 80 percent of women suffer from some kind of hormonal imbalance. This app, created by a woman for women, keeps track of monthly cycles and helps chart ovulation. It offers a calendar with tips on how to gain control over symptoms through diet, exercise and herbal supplements. 9. Exercise More Regular exercise plays such an important role in our overall health. It also creates a healthy reproductive

and hormonal environment. Exercise helps alleviate stress, and supports a good night’s sleep.

Did you know CCMH offers daily wellness screenings?

10. Beat Bloating Increase your water intake and combine with a high-quality probiotic (the more strains the better so read the label). Give coconut water or dandelion tea a try. They are all great ways to get a handle on bloating and help us stay hydrated too!

A screening costs well under $50 at the Wellness Department in the Energy Professional Building and can help identify problems to kickstart your new health routine. Contact (307) 688-8051 to schedule or for more information. Hours are Monday through Friday 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. By: Megan K. Huber

Photos: Megan K. Huber MARCH / APRIL 2019




Community Calendar  March 15

Eastside RV’s Summer Fun Show Held at the CAM-PLEX Central Pavilion in Gillette, the Eastside Summer Fun RV show will help get you excited for summer! New models on-site include Cedar Creek, Rockwood, Wildcat, and more. Enjoy free admission, door prizes, factory reps, and special financing Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more at  March 15—17

 March 16

Make a Ring Workshop Make your very own statement ring! Choose your own stone and ring components, and learn innovative techniques and stylings during this fourhour workshop with Archetype Collective designer and owner, Stefanie Wilkerson. Class space is limited, and allows for only six people for quality design and in-depth teaching time. Sat., Mar. 16 from 1 – 4 p.m. at AVA Community Art Center. Tickets available from for $225 and up.

Gillette College Rodeo Come root on your Gillette College Rodeo athletes in roping, barrel racing, calf roping, bronc riding, and other rodeo events. Fri., Mar. 15 from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. at the CAM-PLEX Central Pavilion. Tickets are $5 at the door. Kids 12 and under are free. Contact (307) 685-3754 for details.

 March 19

 March 16—17

The Under-Water Bubble Show Adults and children alike will enjoy the show, thanks to the high interactivity and audience participation, extremely visual content (there are no spoken words as all the show is musical), and the different level of interpretations that will make you think and smile. Inspired by the famous Canadian troupe “Cirque du Soleil,” The Underwater Bubble Show invades CAM-PLEX Heritage Center

NEWCA Home Show Whether you are a do-it yourself fixer upper or looking for professional assistance, the NEWCA Home Show is the place to make your home dreams a reality. Attendance is free to the public. Sat., Mar. 16 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sun., Mar. 17 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the CAMPLEX Wyoming Center Equality and Frontier Halls. If you'd like to reserve a booth space today or care for more information, please call the Chamber and talk to Lori Jones (307) 6823673, or email to

Legislative Wrap Up It’s your chance to ask questions March 19 as you meet with local legislators to discuss the 2019 Legislative Session. The guest panel will be followed by a question and answer session. Breakfast buffet starts at 6:30 a.m., provided by Pokey's. Tue., Mar. 19 in the Gillette College Technical Center. Learn more and register at  March 21

Theater Thurs., Mar. 21 at 7 p.m. Tickets available for $12-15 through the CAM-PLEX Ticket Office or online at  March 22—23

Wrangler Team Roping Championships For the first time ever, the amateur roper will be able to win sponsorships from national companies that until now, were only available to pros. Here’s an association that will benefit the ropers, sponsors, producers, the Wrangler Team Roping Championships, and the sport of team roping. Join us Fri., Mar. 22 from 4 – 11 p.m. and Sat., Mar. 23 from 9. A.m. – 11 p.m. at the CAM-PLEX East Pavilion. Visit or call (307) 348-2460 for details.

More events

 March 23

Dance Outreach Community Workshop Series Dance classes designed to inspire and excite the young, as well as the young at heart. This month’s workshop features ballet instructed by Toby Lyn Bertch Jackson. Classes are free to attend, open to the public, all ages and skill levels—located at the Heritage Center Theater on Saturdays from 2 to 3 p.m. Preregistration is encouraged. For more information contact Jill Huff at (307) 682-0552 or





ADVERTISERS Bear’s Naturally Clean Dry Cleaners 307.685.4455

Just Criminal Law 307.686.6556

Byrd’s Food Angels 307.680.3663

Mountain West Dental 307.685.1111

CAMPCO Federal Credit Union 307.682.6105

Natalie Daly- State Farm Agent 307.687.1700

City of Gillette 307.686.5200

Outlier’s Creative, LLC 307.686-5121

County 3 307.461.4319 Gillette College 307.686.0254 Gillette Dental PC 307.682.3353 Gillette Printing & Engraving 307.686.0508 Hando’s Service Center 307.675.2287

Paintbrush Services 307.682.3913 Papa John’s Pizza 307.687.7272 Red Daisy Gifts 307.257.7426 Red Hills Veterinary Hospital 307.696.2525 Susan McKay CPA LLC 307.682.5862 The Bank of Sheridan 307.673.8100

Infinity Builders, LLC 307.685-1295

New Patients Welcome!

The MC Family of Companies, LLC 307.685.1295 White’s Energy Motors 307.687.0499

••   General & Cosmetic Dentistry ••   Comprehensive Dental Care ••   Single Appointment Crowns ••   Laser Cavity Detection ••   Digital X-Rays ••   Single Appointment Root Canals ••   Nitrous Oxide Available

Delta Dental Provider 417 West Flying Circle Drive, Gillette, WY 82716

Call (307) 682-3353 MARCH / APRIL 2019


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82717 March/April 2019  

More 82717 online at Though 82717 Magazine may only be published once a month, don’t forget to go online to to k...

82717 March/April 2019  

More 82717 online at Though 82717 Magazine may only be published once a month, don’t forget to go online to to k...