Marjorie Haymond Beckman is an extraordinary person of resilience who championed equal educational opportunities for women in Montana. Beckman grew up homesteading in Livingston. She was first in her family to obtain a college degree and received her bachelor’s degree in bacteriology from Montana State University in 1948. With grit and grace, she raised four children with her husband on the Montana Hi-Line.  She was a rifle markswoman, harvested wild game, ranched, tended  a garden and was caregiver to her aging mother and toddler grandchildren. As one of the first women on the Glasgow school board, she ensured girls an opportunity to take mechanical drawing and changed the school dress code to allow girls to wear pants in the 1970s.  She taught wastewater treatment at MSU-Northern in Havre in the 1980s  She also served as a docent for the Museum of the Rockies in the 1990s.  From 4-H and Girl Scouts to university students, she mentored women of all ages.

From my earliest memory of her placing a cephalopod fossil in my 6-year-old hand, she has inspired, challenged and encouraged me.  As a mother and rural family physician, I am humbled by my grandmother’s example and the opportunities she forged for Montana women.

Marjorie Haymond Beckman