07.08.16

Daines Honors Montanan of the Week: Tom Kuntz of Madison County

U.S. SENATE — U.S. Senator Steve Daines today recognized Tom Kuntz of Ennis for his dedication to the community and the Ennis Community Children’s School. 

Through his “Montanan of the Week” initiative, Daines each week will highlight a Montanan by submitting a statement of recognition in the official Congressional Record, the document that reflects the official proceedings of Congress.

Daines welcomes anyone to nominate fellow Montanans for Daines’ “Montanan of the Week” program by calling Daines’ office at 202-224-2651 or by filling out the contact form on Daines’ website: http://www.daines.senate.gov/connect/email-steve

The following is the statement submitted to the Congressional Record: 

  MONTANAN OF THE WEEK 

    MR. DAINES. Mr. President, Nestled along the banks of the Madison River, protected by the Madison, Gravelly and Tobacco Root Mountains sits the charming town of Ennis, MT. Ennis is a strong community of nearly 1,000 citizens. This humble city boasts blue ribbon trout fishing, gorgeous hiking, and attracts people from all walks of life to the spirit and values of the Old West. 

Tom Kuntz and his wife made Ennis, Montana their home in 2014. Since then, he has weaved himself into the fabric of this community as a dedicated volunteer at Ennis Community Children’s School. After raising kids of his own Kuntz still wanted to be involved in the lives of children. They say it takes a village to raise a child and Kuntz takes his part in this happily. 

Lacy Keller, Director of the Community School, says Kuntz is a weekly volunteer and lends a hand whenever and wherever he can. “He comes in every week, hangs out with the kids, comes on field trips, fixes our bikes and broken toys, mows the lawn, he does whatever he can for us and the kids.” The community school averages 20-25 children ranging in ages from 2-12 and Keller says that all of them adore Kuntz.  

Just a few weeks ago the kids couldn’t wait to invite him on one of their hiking trips. One girl had recently fractured her foot and would have missed out on the group adventure if it weren’t for Kuntz. Keller says that Kuntz graciously carried the little girl on his back up and down the mountain trail. Together the pair spent the day smiling, laughing and Kuntz even sang songs to entertain her and the students throughout the day.

Kuntz is a selfless volunteer who donates his time and money and expects very little in return. On numerous occasions he’s purchased items out of his own pocket to help out with maintenance or building projects. Most recently, Kuntz helped to complete a garden for the school so that students can grow vegetables and cultivate a firsthand knowledge of agriculture. 

He embodies the diligent and gracious heart of Ennis citizens and is instilling that into the future Montana farmers, educators and leaders growing up in Ennis. Montana is truly one of the last best places and I am honored that Tom is so invested in the success of our children. Thank you Tom and welcome home.

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