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We the People: A Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Montana's Constitutional Convention
Join us to explore the bipartisan collaboration drawing on Montana values that led to a constitution unanimously supported in a convention by 50 Republicans and 50 Democrats 50 years ago. This community event is offered together with Leadership Montana and the League of Women Voters of Montana.

This conversation will be livestreamed from the University of Montana and features Constitutional Delegate Mae Nan Ellingson and Constitutional Scholar Anthony Johnstone from the UM Blewett School of Law. The event is moderated by Dr. Robert Saldin, Director of the Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program.

ASL interpreters will be available.

May 23, 2022 05:30 PM in Mountain Time (US and Canada)

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Mae Nan Ellingson
Constitutional Delegate @Montana
Mae Nan Ellingson was the youngest delegate at the 1972 Constitutional Convention from Missoula, where she was named one of the Convention’s “Ten Outstanding Constitutional Convention Delegates.” At the Convention, she led proposals for the state's bill of rights, particularly related to equal rights for women. Ellingson received her JD with Honors from the UM Law School and worked for the Missoula City Attorney’s office for six years. She was a partner at Dorsey Whitney, where she practiced constitutional, state, government, and tax law, from 1983 until her retirement in 2012. As a bond lawyer, though, Ellingson considers her most important work for the state to be setting up the Intercap Program that allowed local governments to borrow money from the state at a low interest rate. For over 30 years, Ellingson has participated in the drafting of legislation in Montana for state and local finance matters.
Anthony Johnstone
Helen & David Mason Professor of Law @University of Montana Blewett School of Law
Anthony Johnstone is an affiliated Professor of Public Administration at the University of Montana's Blewett School of Law. He teaches and writes about Federal and State Constitutional Law, Legislation, Election Law, Jurisprudence, and related subjects. Johnstone's scholarship has been cited more than 100 times by judges, scholars, and practitioners. He has served as counsel in more than two dozen published cases in state and federal courts, including petition-stage or merit-stage briefs for five cases at the Supreme Court of the United States. He has testified before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee and the Montana Legislature. Before joining the School of Law, Professor Johnstone served as the Solicitor for the State of Montana. He holds a B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. with honors from the University of Chicago Law School.
Robert Saldin
Director of Ethics & Public Affairs @Maureen & Mike Mansfield Center
Robert Saldin is the author of several books, including “Never Trump: The Revolt of the Conservative Elites,” “When Bad Policy Makes Good Politics: Running the Numbers on Health Reform,” and “War, the American State, and Politics since 1898.” His scholarly articles have appeared in academic journals, and he has written extensively for the popular press. Saldin was a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar at Harvard University, the Patrick Henry Scholar at Johns Hopkins University, a Fellow at the Miller Center of Public Affairs, and a Visiting Scholar at the University of California Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies. In addition to his work at the Mansfield Center, Saldin is a professor of political science at the University of Montana.