STAFF

CASA of Missoula employs a dynamic team of individuals who are all passionate about empowering children and families in our community. Each member of our staff team dedicates their time to furthering the mission of CASA of Missoula and are committed to supporting the CASA volunteers who advocate for abused and neglected children in Missoula and Mineral County.

Scott Appel

Executive Director

Staff Bio:
Scott and his family have a long history with CASA. Scott served on the CASA of Orange County Board of Directors for six years, the last two as Chairman. Scott’s wife, Maura, was an Advocate in Orange County and two of his children started a club in their high school to raise money in support of CASA. Scott and Maura recently moved to Missoula after falling in love with the community during their visits to their son, who is attending the University of Montana.

Scott has over 35 years of professional experience providing public and private companies with accounting, auditing, financial reporting and business advisory services. He spent the last 20 years in executive management positions with professional services organizations. Scott recently retired from Hein & Associates LLP where he served as the Office Managing Partner of the Irvine Office and as a member of the firm's Executive Committee and then from NextLevel where he served as the Managing Partner of the Seattle Office.

Why did you decide to join CASA?
I believe that we have an obligation to provide every child with a safe and healthy environment and the opportunity to grow and thrive. CASA helps make that happen for those children most at risk.

Office: (406) 542-1208 ext. 100
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

Emily Landsiedel

Development & Outreach Coordinator

Staff Bio:
Emily is a Helena native who graduated from Helena High School in 2006. She received a Bachelor's degree in English, minor in history, and a secondary teaching certificate at the University of Montana in 2011. For eight years, Emily primarily worked in English education. Five years into her teaching career, Emily and her husband decided to take time off to travel the world for nine months before moving from East Helena back to Missoula. During their travels, they visited 25 countries on 5 continents. Through this life-changing experience, Emily witnessed the struggles people face in developing countries; it made such a powerful impact on her that she decided to shift to a career in nonprofit. Emily started at CASA in the summer of 2019 as the Volunteer Coordinator and lead CASA trainer. She is currently working toward a Nonprofit Administration Certificate through the University of Montana that focuses on grant writing, fundraising, social media, and other essential elements of a nonprofit.

Why did you decide to join CASA?:
CASA speaks to me as an organization because it gives a voice to our community’s most vulnerable youth. As a teacher, I saw the impact an unstable home life had on a child. Kids can’t focus on learning, relationships, or personal growth when they aren’t safe or their basic needs aren’t being met. If they’re experiencing abuse or neglect, it affects every aspect of their lives. I enjoy working for CASA because it allows me to help the kids who need it the most, while still utilizing my writing, communication, and marketing skills to support CASA volunteers in their role.

Office: (406) 542-1208 ext 103
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

Kirsten Pulito

Program Manager

Staff Bio:
Kirsten was born and raised in Helena, MT. She went to college at the University of Montana and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies and Human Relations in 2009. Kirsten joined CASA in January 2010 as an Americorps Vista, which is a one-year program designed to help organizations build capacity. Six months after her Vista term ended, Kirsten applied for a Volunteer Coordinator position with CASA and became CASA’s Volunteer Coordinator in July 2010. For the next 5 years, Kirsten held various positions at CASA, and acted as the interim director for 8 months during that time. In 2015, Kirsten left CASA to pursue an opportunity in San Francisco, but Missoula has a way of bringing people back. Kirsten returned to Missoula with a new enthusiasm for Montana and rejoined the CASA team in December 2016. Kirsten enjoys all that Montana has to offer. She loves the pace of life here and getting outside. She lives with her husband Steve and their big, black dog Jayne.

Why did you decide to join CASA?:
When I was assigned to CASA as an Americorps Vista it was meant to be! I was quickly blown away by the mission, the volunteers, and the impact that CASA volunteers make in the lives of children. I am so humbled by the time and heart our volunteers put into their cases and the children and families they work with. Being a CASA is the biggest volunteer position I have ever heard of. The impact that an engaged CASA has on a child is remarkable. I feel so lucky I get to work with our wonderful volunteers; our volunteers are some of the very best people out there. I also really enjoy my co-workers and the work we do matters a great deal to me.

Office: (406) 542-1208 ext. 101
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

Margaret Person

Education & Volunteer Coordinator

Staff Bio:
Margaret grew up in Cascade, where the plains meet the mountains in Central Montana along the Missouri River. She first traveled to Humboldt State University in Northern California on a high jump and triple jump scholarship but later transferred home to finish a Marketing and Management degree at the University of Montana. Margaret became an AmeriCorps Senior Leader for the Montana Campus Compact, focusing on post secondary education for first-generation college students in Montana. Later, she began her work for the Missoula Food Bank & Community Center focusing on programs for the youth of Missoula as well as the senior population. These two roles greatly impacted the trajectory of her career and further ignited her passion for the Missoula community. Margaret enjoys rafting, fly fishing, running, gardening, cooking and spending as much time as possible outside with her two dogs, Caddis and Keta, and her husband Jake.

Why did you decide to join CASA?:
I greatly admire the work that CASA provides for our community, and the positive impacts that it makes for so many children. I am constantly inspired and throughly enjoy working with volunteers and discovering their unique qualities, along with their selflessness and dedication to the mission of their choice. Volunteers make the world go round, and I’m so happy to be there to offer support!

Office: (406) 542-1208 ext. 102
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

Allie Harrison

Volunteer Coordinator

Staff Bio:
Allie Harrison is an author, speaker, and advocate. With a background in law and victim advocacy, Allie is an advocate for survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse.

Allie started her career at United Way of Missoula County, serving on the Missoula Kids Matter initiative task force for child abuse prevention. She graduated from law school at The University of Montana School of Law in 2014. Allie has since served at the YWCA fielding crisis line calls, and she has recently released a book on healing from trauma, called “Take Courage.”

Why did you decide to join CASA?:
I got my start with CASA as a CASA volunteer in the Spring of 2019, and I'm now excited to join the team as a CASA staff member.

Office: (406) 542-1208 ext. 104
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

Ashley Fowler

Data Analysis & Volunteer Coordinator

Staff Bio:
Ashley grew up in southern New Jersey, near Philadelphia. She attended Rutgers University and received a Bachelor's degree in English. Ashley first became interested in working at a non-profit during her time as a staff writer at Answer, a non-profit which provides sexual health education to young people. During her time as an undergraduate, Ashley enjoyed completing research projects primarily focused on social issues, and she loves to read and write.

Why did you decide to join CASA?:
"It's always been important to me to do work that has a positive impact, and CASA Volunteers have such a tremendous impact on the lives of at-risk young people. I'm excited to be involved with an organization that does the important work of providing children with a safe and nurturing home."

Office: (406) 542-1208
Fax: (406) 542-1211
Email: [email protected]

INTERNS

CASA of Missoula is fortunate to work with several students interested in learning more and furthering their college careers by interning. Each year, CASA of Missoula welcomes students to apply to intern throughout the semester. Each intern position is non-compensated, but introduces students to the court system and strengthens valuable skills. We encourage our interns to attend the Fall or Spring CASA Pre-Service training (30 hours) to gain a well-rounded perspective of the program, abuse and neglect cases, and the social welfare system.

 

A HUGE thanks to Renske Wilson Photography for donating her time and talents to CASA of Missoula!