The recently retired state commerce director has accepted a high-level position at Montana State University-Northern.
Havre native Anthony “Tony” Preite will become director of university outreach and economic development. Preite will help Northern with its corporate, industrial and governmental outreach efforts.
“I am thrilled and honored to be a part of the MSU-Northern family," Preite said.
"It is invigorating to work with someone who is as proactive as Northern’s chancellor," he said of Frank Trocki. “I see my goal is to help MSU-Northern expand across the entire spectrum of programs, curriculum and new facilities.”
“The relationships he has built at the state and federal levels as well as his corporate ties are essential for Northern to move forward with several of our current initiatives.” said Northern Chancellor Frank Trocki. “I am very pleased that Tony has joined our team.”
Preite was born and raised in Havre, attended St. Jude Thaddeus School and Havre Central High School and graduated from Northern Montana College in 1963.
He taught government and social studies and was coach/athletic director at Turner High School from 1964 to 1968 and eventually became community development director and later executive director at Bear Paw Development.
Preite, at the recommendation of U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, was appointed by President Bill Clinton as state director of Montana for the Farmers Home Administration in the spring of 1993. Through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, reorganization legislation was passed by Congress on Oct. 1, 1994, and along with passage of the 1996 Farm Bill on April 4, 1996, the agency name change to USDA-Rural Development.
In 1995, he received the U.S. Department of Agriculture Honor Award, one of the highest awards the Secretary of Agriculture can bestow upon an employee.
He assumed more responsible state and federal positions. In November 2004, he was named Montana commerce commissioner by Gov. Brian Schweitzer.