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Bitterroot MAPS Media Institute Founder is Honored

peter rosten
Peter Rosten (Courtesy of MAPS)
The founder of the MAPS media programs in the Bitterroot Valley, Peter Rosten, has been named a 2013 Purpose Prize fellow.

The prize honors Americans 60 years and older who are social entrepreneurs and creative problem solvers.

Rosten was selected as one of 43 fellows in the Purpose Prize program from over 1,000 nominees. He is only the second Montanan to be honored with such a fellowship.

In 2002, Rosten moved to Darby, Montana, after 35 years in Hollywood as a film and television producer. He started the MAPS (Media Arts in the Public Schools) digital media class at the Corvallis school district.

He established the Irwin and Florence Rosten Foundation to handle the funding and in 2005 he became the first Montanan to receive a Class 4 videography teaching certificate based on professional experience. MAPS became an accredited class.

The program expanded to a Hamilton location with a larger teaching staff and became a valley-wide after-school program called the MAPS Media Institute in 2009, creating commercials, public service announcements, documentaries and short films. Most students range in age from 12 to 17 from five different school districts and about 20 percent are home-schooled.

The program continues to have income-producing contracts for the projects, while providing free classes to area students in filmmaking, design, music and computer science. Clients include State Farm Insurance, Montana Hope Project, and Montana’s Office of the Governor.

Rosten said of the honor, “Although I’m greatly appreciative and honored to receive this fellowship, it is a reflection of our team’s collective efforts.”

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