FitzGerald calls 44-year Intermountain career a ‘wonderful mystery’

Jim FitzGerald was working at a sheep ranch in western Montana when he saw a Helena newspaper that a trucker had left at a truck stop.

Tucked inside the help wanted ads was a job opening at the Intermountain Deaconess home in Helena.

FitzGerald, who came from the Los Angeles area, had a bachelor’s degree in psychology. He had come to Montana to work construction and build a few buildings on the sheep ranch his contractor boss in California had purchased. He had fallen in love with the Treasure State and knew he did not want to return to California.

So he applied.

And 44 years later he retired from the agency that has helped thousands of Montana’s children and their families and has also grown in scope and mission.

Intermountain, which describes itself as a “pioneering agency in the areas of mental and behavioral health,” said it helps children and families through residential, school-based and outpatient therapeutic services. It states it is a nationally recognized nonprofit that helps children and families in Montana as well as nationally and internationally through its relationship-based treatment model.

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