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Clyde B. Smith

Clyde B. Smith
Forestry Pioneer

Clyde was born in 1926 in Littlefork, Minnesota. He graduated from Littlefork High School in 1944, and enlisted in the US Navy, where he worked in aviation ordnance. Clyde attended diesel school in Memphis, Tennessee in 1948.  He married Bonnie Briggs in 1951, and in 1953 they moved to Montana.  He became a logger in 1948 and founded the Smith Logging Company in 1964. He worked as a logger until his retirement from the profession in 1989.

Clyde was elected to the Montana House of Representatives in 1983 and served until 1990. He was appointed to the Governor’s Natural Resources Advisory Council, Governor’s Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council and was on the Board of Directors of the State Compensation Mutual Insurance Fund. He was very instrumental in getting workman’s compensation insurance changes made.

Clyde was the co-founder of the Montana Logging Association and was named the Logger of the Year in 1980.  He was co-founder of the ALERT Foundation, a helicopter rescue program. 

Clyde provided $2,500 in seed money for the Flathead Chapter of Society of American Foresters scholarship fund, which today is a $12,000+ fund, and provides two scholarships to Flathead Valley Community College and Salish Kootenai College.

In 1981 he was named as the family-owned Business Advocate of the Year and won the Great Chief’s Award from the Kalispell Chamber of Commerce and was given an honorary membership in the Society of American Foresters, the first and only logger to achieve such recognition.

Clyde is survived by four children, Rick, Barry, Wendy and Pam, 15 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.


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