Montana’s 2019 Small Business Person of the Year

The U.S. Small Business Administration has announced this year’s Small Business Persons of the Year winners from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam. Devon Davidson, the owner of MARS of Billings, has been selected as Montana’s Small Business Person of the Year for 2019.

Each year, the SBA celebrates National Small Business Week by recognizing the achievements of outstanding small business owners and entrepreneurs across the United States. All 53 winners were invited to attend ceremonies in Washington, D.C., May 5-6, where they were honored with their individual award. Devon and his wife, Kim, were in attendance at this ceremony that kicked off National Small Business Week.

“I am so honored to receive this award, and am humbled, especially after meeting so many incredible small business entrepreneurs from all over the U.S. at the national ceremonies that took place in Washington D.C.  I am thankful to the SBA for choosing our business for this award and also thankful to Wayne Erlenbush from Rocky Mountain Bank for nominating us. We look forward to our business growing in Billings and are very thankful to all our team members who make MARS successful, and our customers who support us every day.”  

—Devon Davidson

The 18th Annual High Plains BookFest

The 18th annual High Plains BookFest scheduled for Oct. 10-12 will be a three-day event of free public readings, workshops and panel discussions by contemporary authors from the American West and Canada. The BookFest is held in conjunction with the High Plains Book Awards.

The High Plains Book Awards originated as an idea from the Chair of the Billings Public Library’s Board of Trustees in 2006. Lloyd Mickelson loved the literature of the High Plains that evoked its special connection to that singular landscape. He encouraged the rest of the board to consider having the library sponsor an award to recognize and reward the excellent writing of our region. The first awards were presented in 2007.

Joining forces with the High Plains BookFest, the awards celebrate the finalist authors’ books each October, culminating in the presentation of the awards at the annual banquet.

More than 200 authors from seven western states and three Canadian providences will be vying for book awards in 13 categories; the three finalists in each category will be invited to the BookFest.