Alexis Bonogofsky is a fourth-generation Montanan, goat rancher, and hunter who lives and works along the Yellowstone River in southeastern Montana. For ten years as the manager of the Tribal Lands Partnership Program for the National Wildlife Federation, she fought coal development in southeastern Montana, including the Otter Creek Valley, where billions of tons of coal remain in the ground and where coal companies are aggressively pursuing the development of new coal mines. To fight against environmental destruction and create alternative energy solutions, she built coalitions between indigenous groups, ranchers and hunters and anglers. Her family ranch was impacted by the 2011 Exxon oil spill along the Yellowstone River and she organized other Yellowstone River landowners to take on Exxon and demand proper remediation of the land. She writes about coal, energy, politics, and organizing on the blog East of Billings.
Alexis is a 2014 Lannan Cultural Freedom fellow. She is currently working on stopping Quantum Energy from building an oil refinery in the Billings area that would convert Bakken crude oil into diesel fuel. She is also continuing to organize against new coal mines in Montana and writing about her experiences bringing together Cheyenne people, environmental justice activists, ranchers and farmers, and hunters in an effort to stop coal mining in the pristine Otter Creek valley of southeastern Montana and writing a Citizen’s Guide to Oil Spills based on her experience with the Exxon oil spill on the Yellowstone River.