For the second year in a row, Missoula County won an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties.
This year, the county’s podcast, “Tip of the Spear,” was recognized in the Civic Education and Public Information category.
Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority won an award in the Transportation category last year.
The podcast, recorded almost every week, brings together the three county commissioners to talk about local issues like flooding, fires and housing.
Tip of the Spear launched late last year as a method to communicate during the COVID-19 pandemic. The commissioners credit Administrative Assistant Sarah Bell with the idea for the podcast.
“Something … that I sometimes wonder is whether we’d be having this conversation today were it not for a pandemic,” said Commissioner Dave Strohmaier.
The commissioners see Tip of the Spear as an effective way to communicate with constituents about hot-button issues. They try to tailor each episode to a focus area the community is “worked up about,” Commissioner Juanita Vero said.
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Housing, human trafficking and the Reserve Street Bridge cleanup have been some of the most popular podcast episodes.
The two top-performing episodes