MSU Extension Agents Recognized for Statewide Impacts in Pesticide Education

Amy Bowser, MSU Extension Pesticide Education Technician

Cecil Tharp, MSU Extension Pesticide Education Specialist

Two Montana State University Extension agents have been recognized by the MSU Extension Pesticide Education Program (MSU PEP) for their exceptional efforts educating agricultural producers, land managers and pesticide applicators across the state, as well as promoting the proper use of pesticides to protect public health and the environment. MSU PEP presented the 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award to Tyler Lane, Chouteau County Extension Agriculture and 4-H Agent, and the 2023 Early Achievement Award to Kaleena Miller, Madison/Jefferson Counties Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent. Award recipients were nominated by peers within MSU Extension.

MSU Extension agents accepting pesticide education awards.

Figure 1. Tyler Lane and Kaleena Miller accept their awards for Lifetime Achievement and Early Achievement in pesticide education respectively. A. Bowser, 2023.

Lifetime Achievement Award

The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an individual demonstrating exceptional efforts resulting in statewide pesticide education impacts over 15 years. The award recipient must be with MSU Extension for at least five years with 15 years total of exceptional impacts.

Tyler Lane grew up on a farm and ranch near Molt, Montana and started with MSU Extension in 2001. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanized agriculture from Montana State University and a master’s degree in entomology from the University of Nebraska. Tyler’s career has been focused on prioritizing farming and ranching programming through the Chouteau County Extension Agricultural Advisory Council, teaching Master Gardener programs and facilitating the Chouteau County 4-H Livestock program. Tyler enjoys teaching producers on how to implement integrated pest management for the most problematic pests in the area. He also manages the pesticide container recycling site at Fort Benton and assists neighboring Weed Control Association offices with their annual pesticide recertification programs, as well as teaching how to minimize noxious weed spread to hunter safety classes to youth and adult audiences.

Early Achievement Award

The Early Achievement Award recognizes exceptional efforts and impacts in pesticide education in the first five years employed with MSU Extension. The award recipient must be with MSU Extension for no more than five years and be at the beginning of their agricultural education career.

Kaleena Miller grew up outside of New York City and started her career working for the Alternative Energy Resources Organization and the National Center for Appropriate Technology. She moved to Montana in 2011 as an AmeriCorps service member and started with MSU Extension in 2019. Kaleena holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental economics from the University of Rhode Island and a master’s degree in environmental policy from Bard College. Kaleena has strong partnerships with the Jefferson County Weed District, the Madison County Weed District, and the Weed Committee of the Madison Valley Ranchlands Group. She routinely engages with new landowners in Madison and Jefferson Counties and hosts numerous education courses with local groups including Initial Private Applicator Trainings and Small Acreage Land Management workshops.


MSU PEP relies on the skill sets and experience of veteran Extension agents, as well as the enthusiasm of our newer agents to promote proper pesticide use throughout the state. Having Extension agents like Tyler and Kaleena boosts the knowledge, expertise, and education of pesticide applicators in Montana. Congratulations Tyler and Kaleena!

For more information on the MSU Extension Pesticide Education program see our website at

Future pesticide education nominations may be sent to Cecil Tharp, MSU Extension Pesticide Education Specialist ([email protected]; 406-994-5067).


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