HELENA – Bonnie Bowler, a volunteer at the Montana Historical Society, was surprised with the YWCA’s Woman of the Year Award today.

The award is given to women who show strong efforts in the community and have made personal impacts on others.

Members of the YWCA handed Bowler a plaque and flowers to honor her.

Story continues below

Bowler has worked with numerous community organizations including Montana Shakespeare in the Parks and Local Lewis and Clark group.

She has also served on the board of directors for YWCA Helena.

Bowler said she was very surprised to be nominated for this award.

“I’m humbled and tickled at the same time, it’s an honor and I will find these people who nominated me and thank them personally. I’m just part of the system of people who do things in Helena and I think it’s important to give back,” said Bonnie Bowler.

Bonnie was nominated by Bruce Whittenberg at the Historical Society.

The award is part of the annual Salute to Women. Bonnie will be recognized at a luncheon on March 15th.

The salute to women is put on by Soroptimist International of Helena and the big sky chapter of the American Business Women’s Association.

Nomination of Bonnie Bowler

For YWCA Woman of the Year Award


After 35 years of teaching English, History, Word Clues, and Latin at CM Russell High School, CR Anderson, and both Helena High and Capital High, Bonnie retired in 2003 and has been actively engaged in volunteer work for numerous community organizations, including the Montana Historical Society, Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, the local Lewis and Clark group, and the YWCA of Helena, where she served on the Board of Directors from 2009-2016, and continues to actively volunteer. While teaching, she was involved in Helena Education Association and Montana Education Association PAC groups and the Foreign Language and English Curriculum areas. Bonnie has one daughter, Samantha, who has given her two grandchildren, Olivia and Patrick, whom she visits as often as they’ll invite her. She is a Billings Senior graduate by default but grew up in Helena. She has a BA in Latin, 1965, from the University of Montana and an MA in English, 1995, from Eastern Michigan University. Bonnie enjoys reading, hiking, gardening, traveling and watching football (an avid Grizzly fan), basketball, and track.