Our Board of Directors
James Dean Hicks
James Dean Hicks’ is a country music songwriting icon and has been a contributor to our festival since its inception in 2016. He joined our board in 2017 and contributes in many ways, resources talent, judges our songwriting contest and instructs our Master Class. He has been recorded by the biggest artists in the world including Blake Shelton, Miley Cyrus, Kenny Chesney, Reba McIntyre and Alison Krauss. He has new songs on a multitude of great artists like Jon Wolfe, Joel Crousse, and Joe Nichols. Some of country’s best-selling performers of all time are also well-represented on the list.
Tera joined our board in 2017. She moved to Red Lodge in 1991, working at Red Lodge Mountain in Central Reservations, then in food service as a cook and bartender. In 1995, she started Red Lodge Ski and Travel and operated that until 2001 when she went back to Red Lodge Mountain to work in the marketing department and special events.
Tera has been a REALTOR® since January 1, 2008, and thoroughly enjoys it. She likes helping people achieve their goals whether they are buying or selling, by providing good, timely information and advice. She specializes in homes and vacant land in Carbon County (Red Lodge, Joliet, Belfry, Bridger, Fromberg) and has established relationships with other agents in the area to refer clients who are interested in property outside her focus areas.
Mike is one of the co-founders of the RLSWF and is currently the board chair and executive director. Mike is an experienced business professional with more than twenty-eight years of supporting and growing businesses. As an experienced business executive and board member of several non-profits, he is able to adapt to the changing environment of the small enterprise world. He has spent the bulk of his career leading businesses and nonprofits through the process of strategic and financial planning in order to build long-term growth and sustainability.
Teresa is a business owner in Cody, Wyoming, having opened Legends Bookstore after retiring from 28 years in the minerals industry. She holds a B.S. in Petroleum Engineering from Colorado School of Mines and an M.B.A from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a member of the Cody Country Chamber of Commerce and is an active member and co-chair in the Cody Events Committee. Teresa is a Colorado native but has lived in Wyoming and Montana for more than 31 years. She is married and has one son. She and her husband divide their time between Cody and a second home in Red Lodge.
“As a life-long music lover and the parent of a songwriter, I have a keen interest in helping to bring this slice of the music industry to our remote communities in the West. I think it’s important to provide opportunities for songwriters of all levels the chance to perform, share their stories, and—dare I say—profit from their talent and efforts. It’s also important to help the consumers of music in our communities to more directly connect the origin of the songs they hear to the songwriters. The performance of songs in their most organic form is a win-win for the songwriters and the communities when a festival brings the two together. My many years of experience with project development, budgeting, and organization will aid me in being a contributing member of the board.”
Cari is the owner of a marketing and event-planning company she founded in 1993. Over the last 37 years Cari has successfully created and produced thousands of events mostly for big-tech companies such as Microsoft and others. She also owned a small jingle business in the 90s that produced musical advertising for business in Montana and the northwest. Her expertise is with designing, marketing, and producing all types of events. Cari is excited to become the newest member of the board and to be the co-founder and producer of the Whitefish Songwriter Festival debuting September 2020. Prior to starting her small business in 1993, Cari produced events for multiple nonprofits.
Jayne has been on the board of the RLSWF since 2017. As the finance director she is responsible for the long-term sustainability of the RLSWF. She is an independent business woman handling the accounting responsibilities for many Montana companies in and around the Bozeman area.