Candidate Conversations: Barbara Bessette

Candidate Conversations: Barbara Bessette

By Joslin Knightstep

“How can I help?”

“Do you need anything?”

Two texts I’ve received  from Barbara on countless occasions.

When initially deciding on how I wanted to go about writing this, I couldn’t move past the first question “How can I help?” which is essentially Barbara’s signature phrase at this point. Not just for me though, but to essentially anyone who reaches out to her.

For background, not only am I Barbara’s treasurer, I’m also her cousin. Though we’re tied by blood, we really didn’t know each other until 2015 when I moved to Great Falls. One of the first things we talked about was her desire to run for office and be able to help her community on a larger scale than just her position working Substance Abuse Prevention in Cascade County. 2016 was too soon to fully prepare, but she set her eyes on the 2018 cycle and dove in.

I’ve had the privilege of walking with her while she’s knocked doors on multiple occasions and, not only does she speak (and continues to speak) truthfully with constituents, but she listens actively and wholeheartedly. Barbara remembers specifics about those living in her district. She takes causes they’re passionate about and concerns they have to heart and, from the second she walks away from the door, starts brainstorming solutions on how she can help.

I’ve watched Barbara face many obstacles as a candidate, Representative, and person. I could list a slew of traits that I see in her that she keeps close in her toolkit  to be the very best representation for House District 24, but at the end of the day only one thing matters. 

Barbara wants to help.

I’ve heard, personally, on the doors in HD 24 that some voters feel Barbara’s opponent will “say anything” to get the vote. In contrast to that, Barbara isn’t the candidate that will smile at your door for five minutes and disappear until the next election. 

She’s the candidate with true integrity and tenacity.


The candidate that is reachable year round – not just during the election, and not just during legislative sessions.

Truly, Barbara Bessette is the best candidate to represent -all constituents- across House District 24. Period.