By: Kim Chambers
I was born and raised in Missoula Montana. I went to Lincoln Grade School, Rattlesnake School and graduated from Hellgate High School. I was involved in my church youth group, student government, Key Club (a service organization) and Special Olympics. I was involved in multiple sports; Basketball, softball, soccer, volleyball and my favorite track and field. A tomboy at heart, I love fishing, big game hunting and bird hunting with our black lab, snow skiing and water skiing. I learned to scuba dive and started my flight training until my brother’s passing.
I went to Montana State University and started my education in architecture and transferred my interest to medical education with the dream to go into Cardiac Rehab. The passing of my little brother, Greg Torp, in 1989, changed my direction. I graduated from MSU with a bachelor’s in science in Health Wellness with an emphasis in Business. I was involved in Greek Life through the Alpha Omicron Pi sorority and a little sister of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity.
I had the incredible honor to win the title of Miss Montana USA in 1988 and compete in the Miss USA competition. I used my title to serve our state in Drug & Alcohol Awareness to elementary school aged children through classroom visits and assemblies. I enjoyed many of the Aging Services around the state and volunteered with local Meals on Wheels, visits to nursing homes and Senior Citizen club activities. I also stayed involved with Special Olympics and was active in the Brain Injury Association of Montana.
I returned home to Missoula from my time in Bozeman, to be closer to my parents, grandmother, and the community I loved. I had the wonderful opportunity to work along side of my parents, George & Lovella Torp, in an industry that had been a part of my childhood thru young adulthood, residential construction. I have always loved the process of developing neighborhoods and communities, building homes and enriching Montanans lives. I am fortunate to share my dream with my best friend and husband, Leon Chambers. We own and operate Charter Construction, Inc.
Through our construction industry, I have been involved in the Missoula Businesswomen’s Network, PEO Charter H in Missoula, Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce, Neighborhood Councils, Homeowner Associations, and the building industry associations. My involvement in the building industry associations started with the local Missoula Building Industry Association (MBIA) where I volunteered in several committees and served two terms as President. I was honored by receiving two Builder of the Year Awards and one President’s Award.
My involvement grew to the state association, Montana Building Industry Association (MBIA) in Helena. Again, I served and chaired many committees, testified many years in Montana’s legislature on issues that pertain to building codes, zoning, water rights, subdivision reviews, taxation to name a few. All with the intent to keep housing affordable for all that live in Montana. I became the first female state president and served one and a half terms. I was given the Builder of the Year statewide and the President’s Award for my service.
My board member involvement at the state level grew to the national board level. I proudly have earned and been elected to serve as the State Representative of Montana for the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) My active position at NAHB and MBIA allows me to meet with both our federal senators and house representative on issues that affect Montanan’s ability to have affordable housing and continually opportunity for generations to come. As a building contractor, I have been featured in various magazine and periodicals including Montana home expert. My education is extensive including but not limited to Green Building Practices, property management, real estate, and financing issues.
I am blessed and most proud of our two wonderful grown children who call Montana home. I was raised in the Missouri Synod Lutheran Church and raised, baptized, and confirmed our children through our church. I have been involved in their classrooms, holiday parties and PTA. I have coached elementary age soccer and basketball teams and have been the team mom in more than one season or one sport. Much to their embarrassment, I am a loud and enthusiastic fan/cheerleader! Kasey & Greg were raised to work with us either on jobsites or in our cherry orchard. Family time remains a top priority no matter if it is work or play. I have been given their support for running for Missoula County Commissioner and you will see them on the campaign trail.