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Making it in Big Sky: Highline Partners

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Highline Partners has been responsible for Big Sky’s unique skyline of impressive architecture and mountain home living since 2007. PHOTO COURTESY OF HIGHLINE PARTNERS

By Mira Brody CONTENT MARKETING STRATEGIST

BIG SKY – A frequent name seen in Explore Big Sky’s Best of Big Sky series, Highline Partners has been a custom home builder in Big Sky since owners Rob McRae and Todd Thesing teamed up and founded it in 2007. They have since grown their team and are responsible for Big Sky’s unique skyline of impressive architecture and mountain home living.

As the area grows and changes, McRae asserts that getting involved in your community is the best way to steer that change for the better. Explore Big Sky sat down with him to talk about this change, Highline’s role in the community, and the team he refers to as “family.”

This series is part of a paid partnership with the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce. The following answers have been edited for brevity.

Explore Big Sky: Lets start with a little background information on you—when did you first come to Big Sky and what brought you here?

Rob McRae: My wife and I moved to Bozeman in 2002 with the intention of attending grad school at Montana State University. I needed to work for a year to gain residency and got connected with my now-business partner Todd [Thesing] through a mutual friend who was working for a construction company [at] Yellowstone Club. I had been a carpenter off and on since high school and started working with him. The opportunity seemed very interesting and grad school fell off the radar and we moved to Big Sky in 2004.

I would also encourage people to get involved however they can within the community. The challenges of a growing town are apparent everywhere and, in my opinion, the best way to create positive change is through individuals efforts.

Rob McRae, Highline Partners, Owner

EBS: Tell me about the history of Highline Partners, when did the company get its start and when did you become involved? How has it grown over the years along with the community?

RM: Todd and I started working together in 2002 and decided to start Highline Partners in July of 2007. We slowly started hiring employees and were just getting our feet under us when the economy tanked. We survived the downturn and slowly began scaling up the company.

EBS: How big is your team, and whats the best part about working with them?

RM: We employ approximately 40 people. Many of our employees have been with us for over 10 years and are like family. They have grown and diversified their skills as the business has developed and become key members of the team.

EBS: Tell me about the different services you offer, and which is the most in-demand right now?

RM: High end residential home construction and ranch property development is our main service.

EBS: What is the best part of working at Highline?

RM: Being able to work and live in this amazing mountain community. Work hard play hard is our motto and our team certainly does both!

EBS: What is the best business advice you have ever received?

RM: It’s a quote that I think about often: “There’s no limit to what a man/woman can do or where he can go if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit.”

EBS: Is there anything else that youd like to tell the Big Sky Community?

RM: I would like to thank the Big Sky community for supporting Highline and my family for the past 20 years. I would also encourage people to get involved however they can within the community. The challenges of a growing town are apparent everywhere and, in my opinion, the best way to create positive change is through individuals efforts.

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