Who We Are

We're pet advocates, owners, volunteers & more

Bitter Root Humane Association

A Little History

The Bitter Root Humane Association was formed in 1972 by a group of local animal lovers. In the beginning no formal “shelter” was used and Board members & volunteers housed the animals that need them. Later on a shelter was opened on Adirondac Street in Hamilton but in December of 1982 the City of Hamilton took over the property for a septic treatment plant. Without the necessary funds to relocate, the shelter was forced to close. Homes were found for the remaining animals and the shelter was dismantled.

A new Board was chosen in 1983 and in 1984, Countess Margarite Bessenyey came to the rescue and gave the group land on Fairgrounds Road with a ninety-nine year lease. Six years later, in 1990 the Bessenyey Estate deeded the land to the Bitter Root Humane Association.

Betty Cook, as President in 1984, led the volunteers in raising money for the shelter. They did everything from holding dances to bake sales and raffles. Even without a shelter, they did the best they could and placed many stray animals and answered cruelty calls. By January of 1985, they had enough money (approximately $100,000.00) to put out for bids to build their shelter and building began in May 1985. That building is the current shelter facility at 262 Fairgrounds Road.

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide caring, compassionate shelter and enrichment for homeless companion animals, find loving lifelong homes, reunite pets and owners, promote population control and advocate for all animals. We are proud to say, we have no time limits to finding the perfect home for our “guests” and in 2018 our adoption/reunite rate was 93.9%.

Unleash Tomorrow

Our Future

We are currently in the process of “UNLEASHING TOMORROW” and building a new shelter….check out our website www.unleashtomorrow.org for all the details, our progress and how you can help!

New BRHA front view 8.2019

Staff Directory

Our BRHA staff consist of compassionate, knowledgeable and dedicated employees who make sure that all the animals coming through our doors are safe, loved & cared for until their forever home can be found.

  • Operations Manager – Cyra Saltzman
  • Office/Volunteer Coodinator – Chelsea Detweiler
  • Bookkeeper – Peggie Noffsinger
  • Medical Specialist – Char
  • Front Desk/Adoption Counselor – Heather
  • Animal Caretakers – Amber, Kelly & Betty
  • Kathie Butts – President
  • Mary Gehl – Vice President/Secretary
  • Linda C. Williams – Treasurer
  • Sue McCormack
  • Mary Fox
  • Barbara Garten
  • Robin Dewey
  • Jen Chase
  • Rachel Kramer
  • Kathy Good – Past President Emeritus

The Bitter Root Humane Association is a private, non-profit 501(c)3 organization and is operated by a volunteer Board of Directors. The Board provides supervision and control of the property, business and activities of the Association and is comprised of seven (7) to thirteen (13) volunteer members each serving a three-year term, with elections to these positions taking place at the organization’s Annual Membership Meeting usually held in March of each year.

Would you be interested in serving on the board? Any BRHA member in good standing is welcome to send a Letter of Interest to the Board of Directors stating your willingness to serve and a brief explanation of “why” you feel you would be a benefit to the BRHA. Our Nominating Committee will then schedule an interview to discuss any questions you might have and explain the election process.

Anyone wishing to contact the Board may do so by writing to:
BRHA BOARD of DIRECTORS

P.O. Box 57

Hamilton, MT 59840

Board of Directors

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