Photos by Jill Courtney
KING ULLR LIX
A fourth generation Montanan, Paul was raised in Sunburst, Montana. Paul attended Montana State University and then worked for the Farm Credit System in Bozeman and Missoula, then First Bank/US Bank and First Interstate Bank in Missoula. Paul moved to Whitefish in 2003 to take a job as President of First Interstate Bank. In 2006, Paul left the banking industry to become the Managing Member of Great Northern Ventures LLC, a real estate development company. In 2010 he became the Managing Partner of National Parks Realty. Paul has served on several local boards including the Whitefish Community Foundation, Whitefish Lake Golf Club, Flathead County Economic Development Authority, Glacier Airline Enhancement and Outreach, Inc. (Glacier AERO), North Valley Hospital Foundation and Bulldog Boosters. He has also been active in fundraising for the Memorial Field Stadium and the 2008 High School Bond Committee.
In 2012 Paul served as Prime Minister to King ULLR LIII and has been the Chair of the Whitefish Winter Carnival Board of Directors since that time.
QUEEN OF THE SNOWS
Lani was born in Hamilton, MT. She grew up in Anaconda, and moved to Whitefish as a sophomore in high school. She worked at Gordy’s Drive-in as a car hop, then headed to beauty school right after graduation. Lani first worked at Sandra’s Salon,now Latitude 48. The salon was moved to its current location and renamed the Hair Hut. Lani celebrated 50 years in business last July. Lani became a skier. She is very active with the Big Mountain Ski Club. She has been a Carnival supporter as a Penguin. Lani received the High Ullr Award, along with the other Penguins. for their many years of service to Winter Carnival. Lani has been a hiker and loves Glacier Park. Her favorite quiet time is with family and friends at the family cabin by Glacier. Time at home is spent trying to garden and do home things with her sister, Susi and three dogs.
PRIME MINISTER LIX
Jeff Raper was born in 1963 in Bend, Oregon. He moved to Whitefish with his parents in 1977 after his parents purchased the Mount View Motel. It consisted of 7 cabins and Whitefish’s only indoor swimming pool. Jeff played on the 1979 State Championship football team. He graduated from Whitefish High School in 1981. Jeff left Whitefish after graduation to attend the University of Montana, followed by 3 years as a ski bum in Oregon. He had a 7-year retail management career with JC Penney that took him to Idaho and Utah. Missing home and remembering the fun he had growing up here, Jeff decided to move back to Whitefish in 1992, when raising a family of his own became a priority. For the past 20 years Jeff has been active in the real estate industry. He is currently one of the managing partners at National Parks Realty. Over the past 26 years, Jeff has been active in coaching youth sports. He served on the board for Whitefish Your Soccer, Project Whitefish, The Whitefish Chamber, and both the local and regional MLS (multiple listing service) boards. “I love this place and all the opportunities it offers, I can’t imagine living anywhere else.”
DUCHESS OF LARK LIX
Stephanie Skinner grew up in Minnesota in a suburb just outside of Minneapolis and always enjoyed outdoor activities, spending her summers waterskiing and playing tennis and softball. Learning to ski at 5 years old on the so-called “hills” of Minnesota and Wisconsin, she formed a passion for winter sports. After high school, she attended the University of North Dakota. She later worked in Yellowstone National Park. In the summer of 1996, Stephanie took a trip with friends to hike in Glacier National Park and discovered Whitefish. The magic of the town took hold and she immediately knew this is where she belonged. She returned to Whitefish 7 days later will all of her belongings in tow to stay for good. In 2001, Stephanie obtained her real estate license and specializes in real estate at Whitefish Mountain Resort as an associate with Glacier Sotheby’s International Realty.
Stephanie married the love of her life, Tony Spear this past August in Whitefish. In the winter you can usually find them on the mountain and in the summer, it’s not uncommon to find them camping along a river somewhere in the valley with their Golden Retreiver, Leo.