School Board Candidates

Please take the time to read about each of our candidates. We are thankful people are willing to serve their school and community. Candidate biographies are listed in alphabetical order by last name.

Please click on this link to see the Notice of the Annual School Election.

Rainier Batt

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My name is Rainier Batt, I was born and raised in Frenchtown. I have been a tradesman all of my adult life from logging and heavy equipment operations to stone masonry and housing construction, Realtor, and am currently a refrigeration tech and own my own business. I am fortunate enough to have married a very supportive wife and have two children. Family is very important to me. I am an outdoorsman and enjoy passing on those adventures to my children. I attended Frenchtown School K-12 and have a lot of pride in our school system and believe it to be one of the best in the state, and that is why my wife and I worked hard to relocate to Frenchtown for our son to start Kindergarten here 8 years ago.

Frenchtown has become a huge part of my family. I have coached and gotten to know many of the students beyond my own, and I hope that we as a community can all work together to make sure all children are supplied with the best opportunity for success in life as possible.

As my past employers and colleagues will attest, I'm committed to completing every task to the highest standards in a timely, safe, and effective manner. I am drawn to meet challenges and grow from them, and embrace every opportunity to learn new skills and contribute to a successful outcome. I'm attentive, follow direction, and possess quick thinking and problem solving skills.



Amanda Hansen

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My name is Amanda Stedman Hansen, and I am running a for Frenchtown School Board position. I am a 3rd generation Frenchtown alumnus, and my kids are all students in Frenchtown as well. I was born and raised right here in Frenchtown, and absolutely loved the small town feel and community that Frenchtown emulates. I am a mother to three teenagers; Ryder, Bailey and Landon, whom love Frenchtown and all the wonderful opportunities they have to offer. I met my husband, Mat, in the hallways of Frenchtown High School many years ago. You will see him volunteering to coach or assist in just about every sport there is.

As a family we enjoy summers chasing softball, winters sitting in bleachers at wrestling and basketball, and our falls are consumed with hunting, camping and being outdoors. Our family also loves competing on horses, and usually do a substantial amount of traveling to O-mok-see’s.

I am a tax accountant for a small firm in Tarkio, MT, and I truly strive to be the best I can be. I love the frequent changing landscape, and challenges of the IRS. 😊 Part of this job is discretion and integrity, and keeping a client’s trust. I believe several of my attributes from the job, will be applicable on the board position as well. Most that know me will tell you, I’m extremely hard working, dedicated, and reliable. I like doing things correctly, and with pride.

The reason I decided to run for school board, was because I love this community, that I’ve always called home, and would love the opportunity to give back to the town that raised me. I had some amazing teachers growing up that helped shape me, motivate and encourage me, and molded me into the woman I am today. I would love the opportunity to pay these attributes forward. I would encourage anyone who has questions or concerns to reach out. My hope is to keep Frenchtown that small town community togetherness that makes it so unique, even though the growth in the area is substantial. Keeping lines of communication open is imperative at sustaining the relationships between faculty, school board, community, and most importantly students.

Chris Kaneff

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Chris was born in Missoula MT on Jan 26, 1970 at St Patrick’s hospital (babies were born at St Pat’s way back then). At age 18 he enlisted in the Marine Corps and after completing 2 tours from 1988 to 1995, he returned to Missoula MT. That year he registered for the University of Montana and joined the MT Army National Guard. 1999 was a year that changed Chris’ life forever as his first child, Sydney Marie was born. In 2000 he hired on with the Missoula Police Dept as a Patrol Officer where he served his community for 21 years. Garrison Michael was born in 2002, growing the Kaneff clan even larger. Chris Graduated from the University of Montana in May of 2002 and received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration. In 2003 Chris accepted a Commission with the MT Army National Guard and served two more combat tours in Iraq as an Infantry Officer, earning the Combat Infantry Badge, Army Commendation Medal, and Bronze Star. On May 12th, 2004 Chris Kaneff and Heidi Schussler were married in Missoula MT. In November of 2006 Heidi and Chris were blessed with the addition of Jacob Albert to their family. In 2012 Chris retired from the MT Army National Guard and received his final DD214 and Honorable Discharge. 2015 was a good year for the Kaneff family as they fulfilled a longtime dream of moving to Frenchtown, for rural living and an excellent school system. In 2021 Chris retired from the Missoula Police Dept, and worked for a short time at Scheels when they opened their doors in Missoula. Chris took a job with the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office as a Special Deputy in March of 2022 where he currently labors, part time, as needed by the Sheriff. Jacob has attended Frenchtown Elementary school, Frenchtown Junior High, and is currently a freshman at Frenchtown HS. Chris is an active member of the VFW Post 209 in Missoula and is continually looking for ways to improve the community.

Gordon Schmill

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My name is Gordon Schmill. I’m running for a second term as a School Board Trustee. I have been a Trustee for three years. My third year I was appointed Vice Chair. As a Trustee you’re involved in numerous different tasks such as; balancing and maintaining a working budget, sitting on several different committees and conducting business at board meetings with the administrators, Superintendent, and fellow Trustees. I’m currently serving on the following: Safety, Insurance, finance and building committees.

I was born in Missoula and raised in Frenchtown since the 1st grade. Yep, I’m a Frenchtown alumnus 1994. To further my involvement with the Frenchtown community I became a Volunteer Fire Fighter with the Frenchtown Fire Department in 1993 and left the department as a Captain in 2000. I was also a volunteer member for the Missoula County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue from 1994-2000. From 1994-2000 I did wildland firefighting with the Forest Service at the 9 mile Ranger Station, logging, ranching and was a Contractor/Supervisor for Environmental Contractors. I started my law enforcement career April of 2000. During that time, I was also a court security officer with the Federal Marshals. My law enforcement days came to an end December 27, 2017. I was rear ended at 70 MPH on I-90 and due to continuing injuries I was medically retired September of 2018. I retired as a Patrol Sergeant and sniper on the department’s SRT.

I’m married and my wife’s name is Autum. Autum is a dispatcher for Missoula County and has been there for almost 15 years. I have a step-daughter Madelyn Eggers who graduated from Frenchtown last year and is now a freshman at the University of Providence. Our oldest son, Garrett, is a senior and is looking to continue his education at the University of Montana. Our youngest son, Brady, is a freshmen. All three of them were/are in various sports throughout their years at the school. To say the least we had very few weekends that we weren’t doing something. I have also volunteered several years coaching with MYF and Frenchtown 7th/8th grade football.

My hobbies are pretty limited, but when time permits, I love to be in the outdoors. When I’m not in the stands supporting our kids, you can find me trying to hunt or fish. Frenchtown has been my home for a long time and will continue to be for a lot longer. I hope to continue my role as a School Board Trustee for years to come. Gordon Schmill

Matt Waldron

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My name is Matt Waldron and I am running for one of the open seats on the Frenchtown Schoolboard. My family moved to this community when I was in 6th grade. Lucky for me my first teacher was the great Bette Paskey. I didn’t realize then but looking back nobody could have introduced me to what Frenchtown stood for more than Bette Paskey.

I married a Frenchtown girl and we have two boys who are a freshman and a senior and have attended Frenchtown since kindergarten. As a parent I am proud of the many strengths and achievements of our schools. I know there are some concerns and issues that need to be addressed, but strongly believe that a new, different and fresh perspective can be conducive to coming up with creative solutions. I like to think that I look at and listen to all options and outcomes before I make a decision. Frenchtown Schools are more than a place of education but a community center. I have seen Frenchtown School change from a small Class B to a small Class A to where we are today, not just in athletics but all spectrums of the education system.

I have run a successful business for the past 15 years, from this I have learned how to run a budget to prioritize needs and wants, but to ultimately accomplish both. I have coached and volunteered for many programs as my kids were growing and have gotten to know lots of great kids. Ultimately my youngest only has 3 years left in school, so for me it’s not about them, but the future Frenchtown Broncs and this great community.

I am open for any discussions or questions.

Thanks Matt

Chad Walker

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I was born and raised in Great Falls, MT. I was an only child and my parents divorced as I entered the 5th grade. I relied on school programs to eat, school counseling to help me realize I wasn’t the cause of the divorce, teachers to educate my busy mind, and coaches in athletics to push me outside of my comfort zone. I learned how to think for myself, to know that I truly could accomplish anything I put my mind to, and that if you are not coachable as a child, you certainly won’t be coachable as an adult.

After high school I had the great fortune to continue my education and athletic career further as I attended college in the state of South Dakota. This is where I met my wife Adriana and we proved a collegiate baseball player and a collegiate volleyball player could co-exist. A few years later, we moved to Frenchtown and started a family. We have two amazing kids, Mateo (4th grade) and Sophia (2nd grade). Currently, I’m the National Sales Director for a Medical Software company and have had the pleasure to lead sales professionals for the better part of two decades.

We moved to Frenchtown, because; we were looking for close knit community. In Frenchtown, we still wave at our neighbors, see our teachers at our kids Football games and we allow our coaches to teach our kids valuable lessons about sportsmanship and how to deal with victory and defeat.

With my background, I feel I bring a well rounded perspective on what our parents, teachers, coaches and citizens of Frenchtown might be going through at any given point in time. I am committed to listen to all parties and to help structure a school district that we can all be proud of and excited to send our children to everyday.


Chad M. Walker