HELENA, Montana – Simulation in Motion Montana, Inc., the world’s only accredited mobile simulation medical training organization, has hired Darrell Ehrlick as its first executive director. The eight-member board, which has representatives from across the state, selected Ehrlick in a national search to help shepherd SIM-Montana as it expands its services and reach throughout Montana and beyond. In the past year, learners who participated in simulation education with SIM-Montana cared for more than a half-million Montanans.
“The board is very excited about our selection of Mr. Ehrlick,” said Drew Dawson of Boulder, who serves as the chairman of its board. “This is the next logical step in growing the sustainability of our organization which delivers first-class education services to Montana’s rural medical personnel in their own community.”
SIM-Montana was first made possible by a $4.6 million grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services. In 2015, Helmsley funded three mobile simulation trucks that housed state-of-the-art, high-fidelity training labs and simulators. Since its inception those three mobile training units have been deployed to every corner of Montana. Teams have provided hundreds of simulation trainings to medical professionals and first responders.
“The addition of Mr. Ehrlick to the SIM-Montana team is a testament to Montana clinicians’ commitment to providing exceptional patient care,” said project director Ben King. “Mobile high-fidelity simulation is the benchmark for clinical education. SIM-Montana is successful because the healthcare community in Montana has embraced simulation and the indisputable evidence that lives are saves when clinical teams prepare with simulation. Darrell’s expertise and deep roots in our state are essential as we continue to grow and invest in high-quality patient care.”
In January 2020, The Helmsley Charitable Trust awarded SIM-Montana another grant totaling more than $1.9 million to continue to build the organization, ensuring that it would continue as a non-profit resource that delivers cutting-edge training across Montana. In addition to hiring an executive director, the SIM-Montana board is in the process of hiring its first development director.
Ehrlick is a native of Billings, where he’ll be based. He’s a veteran of journalism and communications, having served most recently as the editor of The Billings Gazette. Before that, he led newspapers in Wyoming, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Utah. He’s written five books, taught journalism at the college level for more than a decade, and won numerous awards, including leading the best paper in Montana for four years straight.