about_banner

Our 24/7 emergency service team can assist you day or night 406.586.8109

We are a family

Ben and Gail Yanker started Buffalo Restoration back in 1991. Ever since the beginning it's been a family business. Their daughters Alisa and Emily and son Christopher were put to work at an early age, crawling in wet basements and drying up water losses on weekends.The children grew up and the company expanded.

Ben and Gail treat their business as if they have an extra 28 members of their family. With home-cooked breakfasts on your birthday and cake on the anniversary of your hiring, it's hard to not feel special. When we jokingly refer to our company as the Buffalo herd, there's truth in that. Because a herd moves together.  And buffalo are a strong and rare breed. They're about as local as an animal can get in Montana, and so are we.

And being a family company has an impact on how we do business. When you choose Buffalo, you're part of the herd, no questions asked. We're going to treat you like family, and we won't rest comfortably until you can.


Meet the Herd

Click on the name or picture to read profiles

Ben Yanker Gail Yanker Christopher Yanker Jessica Ragain
Kevin Dineen        Frank Kolschefsky Ellen Beck Phil Blodgett




Randal Halvorson Ryan Hostetter
Wayde Lewis
David Piatz

    
 Kenny Kennis
 George McAdams
 Nick Gaudenzi
 Javier Medina




 Logan Hoge  Matt Herzog Shane Sherman  Chance Fisher
 Derek Musick   Tia Covert   Alex Harry Jesse Dreyer
       
 Herbert Halvorson Nick Anderson  David Olson   

Ben Yanker, President

Ben started Buffalo Painting in 1976. In 1991 he saw the need for restoration services in the community and Buffalo Restoration was born. Ben graduated from MSU with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business. Ben was the first Certified Restorer in the state of Montana, which represents the highest degree of professionalism and knowledge. Ben is a Certified Water Loss Specialist, Certified Mechanical Hygienist and Certified Structural Drying Supervisor. Ben also holds the following certifications from the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration: Master Fire and Smoke Restorer, Master Textile Cleaner, Odor Control, Master Water Restorer, Color Repair, Health and Safety, Applied Microbial Remediation, Carpet Cleaning, Water Damage Restoration, Carpet Repair and Reinstallation, Upholstery and Fabric Cleaning, and Applied Structural Drying. Ben received the distinguished service award from the Association of Specialists in Cleaning and Restoration for 2002 through 2004. He is an active member in trade association education, as well as a board member for the Bozeman Area Chamber of Commerce. Ben is truly an expert and believes strongly in professional training for his employees. When Ben isn’t leading the Buffalo herd, he enjoys water-skiing, bike riding, hunting, and fishing.

Fun Facts about Ben

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Caring

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Helping employees grow and develop. And helping people out of what might seem like impossible situations to put their lives back together.

Gail Yanker, Office Manager

Gail and her husband Ben started Buffalo back in 1977 as a painting company. In 1991 they started restoration work. She is currently the office manager, in charge of keeping all departments organized and working efficiently. She is very involved in a number of business peer groups where she learns best practices and tips from restoration companies around the country. When away from the office, Gail enjoys spending time with her grandson Zane and at their lake house. She is also a Stampin’ UP! Demonstrator and craft superhero.

Fun Facts about Gail

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Helping people

Q: If you could live the life of any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: Samantha on Bewitched. I could get a lot of work done in a hurry and then play!

Christopher Yanker, Production Manager

Christopher has been working at Buffalo since he was a small child but he’s been formally employed with the company since 2000. He has the following certifications: Water Damage Restoration Technician, Applied Structural Drying, Odor Control, Fire and Smoke Restoration, and Applied Microbial Remediation Technician. Christopher loves the outdoors including skiing, ice climbing, camping, hunting and fishing.

Fun Facts about Christopher

Q: If you were a superhero, what super power would you have?
A: I would love to fly. If you can fly, who needs ski lifts?

Q:
If you were an animal, what animal would you be?
A: Mountain Goat

Jessica Ragain, Accounts Manager

Our super hero bean counter, Jessica, handles all the invoicing and insurance claims for our customers. She is a Certified Public Accountant and has been with the company since 2010. She graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a focus on accounting. She has 6 years of experience as a public accountant focusing on taxes and financial statements. She is also a Notary Public for the State of Montana. Jessica is excellent at helping our customers navigate the sometimes complicated world of insurance claims. In her free time, Jessica enjoys reading, cooking, and spending time with family.

Fun Facts about Jessica

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: I enjoy knowing that I work for a company that truly helps its clients.

Q:
If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Sarcasm. Evil-doer would be so wounded by my mocking remarks that they would turn themselves in.

Frank Kolschefsky, Estimator/Sales

Frank joined the Buffalo herd in 2013 with 7 years of estimating experience and 15 years of construction experience. He is a certified IICRC Fire Restorer. He knows the ins and outs of the construction world and writes accurate and fair estimates for our customers in their time of need. You may not know, Frank is a certified college and high school basketball referee!

Fun Facts about Frank

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Family

Q: If you could live the life of any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: James Bond

Ellen Beck, Marketing Director

Ellen Beck  joined Buffalo Restoration in March of 2014 as Marketing Director. Beck was previously CEO of Avtek Technical Solutions, LLC (ATS) and co-founder of Avtek Associates, Inc., a high-tech electronics sales firm in Maryland.

Beck has over twenty years of marketing and public relations experience. She worked for several of the world’s largest public relations firms including Fleishman-Hillard and Porter Novelli where she launched consumer education campaigns, trained high level personnel in media relations, and handled crisis communications for Fortune 500 companies.

Beck holds a BA in Communications from The American University in Washington, DC.  In her free time, Ellen enjoys cooking, reading, and hanging out with her husband and kids.

Fun Facts about Ellen

Q: If you were a superhero, which superhero would you be?
A: Catwoman

Q:
If you were a car, which one would you be?
A: Porsche Carrera

Phil Blodgett, Production Coordinator

Phil has been with our team since 2011, coordinating, scheduling, and processing all of our jobs. He keeps things moving smoothly and works at Mach speed to dispatch our crews to emergency situations. Phil has 4 years of naval experience and served during Iraqi Freedom with 2 tours in the Persian Gulf. He has a degree in Business Management with a concentration in Human Resources from Colorado Technical University. He has roughly 8 years of management experience and was previously a recruiter for DISH Network.

Fun Facts about Phil

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Daily interactions with customers and helping them get through the chaos.

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
A: Cork, Ireland

Randal Halvorson, Carpet, Rug, and Upholstery Technician

Randal has been working magic on spots and stains at Buffalo for over17 years. Beyond his extensive training and involvement with the Restoration Industry Association and the Carpet and Rug Institute, he’s the king of customer service. He’s passionate about textiles and he shares his wealth of knowledge and expertise with our clients. Beyond his textile certifications, Randal is also certified in Mold and Sewage Damage Restoration, Water Damage Restoration, and Odor Control. In his spare time, Randal enjoys camping, boating, and spending time with his family.

Fun Facts about Randal

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: People

Q: If you were a car, what kind of car would you be?
A: The Bat Mobile

Ryan Hostetter, Estimator/Sales

Ryan has a wealth of experience and knowledge in both the restoration and construction industries. He is IICRC certified as a Water Restoration Technician and Applied Microbial Remediation Technician. He has 20 years of experience in the construction trades. His attention to detail and dedication to superb customer service make him a great asset to our team. Ryan gets things done and he shows our clients that their homes really can look better than before the disaster happened. Ryan enjoys hiking and fishing with his family and playing the electric bass.

Fun Facts about Ryan

Q: If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Warp speed… and a magic wand

Q:
If you were a car, what kind of car would you be?
A: ’69 Black Dodge Charger

Wayde Lewis, Project Manager

Wayde has been part of the Buffalo team since 2009, he worked for Buffalo previously for 4 years before he worked with his own construction company. He is certified in Water Damage Restoration and Applied Structural Drying. Wayde brings 30 years of construction experience to the company. He also has 12 years of military service. Our customers constantly rave about Wayde and his kindness during times of chaos after home disasters. Wayde enjoys fishing, woodworking, and mountain running. He also volunteers at local rest homes and helps low income families with needed home repairs.

Fun Facts about Wayde

Q: If you could live the life of any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: Rick Prom, American Restoration

Q:
What is your favorite food?
A: Jelly beans

David Piatz, Technician

Fun Facts About David

Q: If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Shape shirting

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Thorough 

Kevin Dineen, Project Manager

Kevin joined the Buffalo Restoration team in January 2014 as a project manager after years in construction management. He has expertise in building and is an asset to our homeowners when we're putting their homes back together after fire and water damage.

Fun Facts about Kevin

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: The people I work with.

Q: If you were a car, what kind of car would you be?
A: Fire Truck

Kenny Kennis, Cleaning Manager

Kenny has been the manager of the cleaning department since the Summer of 2012. He specializes in the pack-out, inventory, and cleaning of fire damaged contents and belongings using Buffalo’s state-of-the-art cleaning center and inventory software. He his certified in Fire and Smoke Restoration, Water Damage Restoration, Applied Microbial Remediation, Assured Contents Pack-out Software, and Digital Photo Inventory. Kenny’s previous work experience as an insurance agent gives him a clear understanding of the claims process. When Kenny isn’t saving precious belongings and memories from the home fires, he enjoys playing with his children, watching football, and fellowshipping with friends and family.

Fun Facts about Kenny

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Positive

Q: If you could live the life of any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: Homer Simpson

George McAdams, Technician

George started with the Buffalo team in 1994. George holds a whopping 13 certifications from the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration, including Master Fire and Smoke Restorer, Journeyman Textile Cleaner, Carpet Repair and Reinstallation, Odor Control, among others.. He is also certified as a Mold and Sewage Remediation Technician from Restoration Consultants. George enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing, camping, and canoeing.

Fun Facts about George

Q: If you could be any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: Fonzzy

Q: If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Wiggle my nose and things would just happen!

Nick Gaudenzi, Technician

Nick has been with the Buffalo Restoration team since 2010, specializing in water damage restoration. He has certification from IICRC in Applied Structural Drying, Water Damage Restoration, and Applied Microbial Remediation.. He adds humor and fun to our work. In his spare time, Nick enjoys doing stunts on his motorcycle, sometimes in a buffalo costume.

Fun Facts about Nick

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Helping people in their bad situations

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Willing

Javier Medina, Technician and Equipment Maintenance

Javier joined the Buffalo Restoration team in 2007 as a water damage technician. Javier is incredibly handy and skilled with machinery and keeps our vehicles and state-of-the-art equipment running smoothly. Javier is certified in Applied Microbial Remediation and trained at the Hyrdo Lab. His past experience in industrial maintenance and as a small engine technician make him a vital and critical part of the Buffalo team. In his spare time, Javier enjoys, you guessed it, repairing and tinkering with things like computers, electronics, cars, and sound systems. He also enjoys fishing and spending time with his family and friends.

Fun Facts about Javier

Q: What is your favorite food?
A: T-Bone

Q: If you have one wish, what would you wish for?
A: Enjoy health with my family

Logan Hoge, Technician

Logan specializes in the water damage department of the business. He is certified as a Water Damage Restoration Technician and is also certified in Applied Structural Drying and Applied Microbial Remediation. He has previous work experience in construction. Logan’s calm and caring attitude are a breath of fresh air for our clients after they experience a disaster. His favorite part of his job is that every day is different. When he’s not fixing customers’ bad days, he enjoys camping, fishing, and hunting.

Fun Facts about Logan

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Professional

Q: Where would you travel if you could go anywhere?
A: Space

Matt Herzog, Technician

Matt joined the company in 2012 with 8 years of professional cleaning experience, including carpet, vacation rentals, and home cleaning. Matt is certified in Water Damage Restoration and Applied Microbial Remediation and has experience in management and in customer service. His positive and upbeat attitude makes him a joy to work with. Our customers appreciate his friendliness when he is working in their home. Matt enjoys hiking, hunting, fishing, and spending time with his family.

Fun Facts about Matt

Q: If you have one wish, what would you wish for?
A: 3 more wishes

Q:
What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Trained

Shane Sherman, Technician

Shane joined the Buffalo herd in 2012 after years of local restoration experience. He is IICRC certified in Fire and Smoke Restoration, Carpet Cleaning, Upholstery and Fabric Cleaning, and Water Damage Restoration. Shane is meticulous in his work which makes him a great asset to our contents cleaning team. Shane’s interests include alternative energy, alternative healing, nutrition and wellness, canoeing, and bible research. Shane’s favorite part of working at Buffalo is the people he works with.

Fun Facts about Shane

Q: If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Healing

Q: What is your favorite food?
A: BBQ Spare Ribs

Chance Fisher, Technician

Chance joined the Buffalo team in September of 2012 as a technician. He is an excellent carpenter and has extensive experience in the construction industry. Chance is IICRC certified in Water Damage Restoration and Applied Microbial Remediation.  His favorite part of his job is the people he gets to meet. His friendly and helpful demeanor make him a customer service pro. In his spare time he enjoys fishing and anything to do with the outdoors.

Fun Facts about Chance

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A:
United

Q: Where would you travel if you could go anywhere?
A: Mars

Derek Musick, Technician

Derek has been a part of our Buffalo herd since the Summer of 2012. As a technician, he works on water damage and reconstruction projects. He is certified through IICRC in Applied Structural Drying, Water Damage Restoration, and Applied Microbial Remediation. Derek is a hard worker and goes above and beyond for our clients. He takes the extra steps to make sure our customers are happy and satisfied. Derek enjoys fishing, hiking, skiing, four wheeling, softball, and golf.

Fun Facts about Derek

Q: If you could live the life of any character on any TV show or movie, who would it be?
A: Peter Griffin from Family Guy

Q: What is your favorite food?
A: Pizza

Tia Covert, Office Assistant

Tia joined the expanding Buffalo Restoration team in August 2013. She is the pleasant and friendly voice on the other end of the phone when you call our office. Tia says that she enjoys her job because she is "contributing to a great company that is striving to make a difference in the lives of everyday people when hard times strike." The word she would choose to describe the Buffalo team is compassionate. In her free time Tia enjoys spending time on the water and is learning to wake board. She's hoping to learn how to snowboard this Winter.

Fun Facts about Tia

Q: If you were a superhero, what would your super power be?
A: Kindness, I genuinely love helping people and bringing a smile to their face.

Q: If you were an animal, what would you be?
A: Dog. When I think about all the joy and companionship that my dogs bring to me, I think that is similar to the kind of person I am.

Alex Harry, Technician

Alex joined the Buffalo team in October of 2013. His hard work and good attitude have been an asset to the water damage team.Alex is IICRC certified in Water Damage Restoration and Applied Microbial Remediation.  Alex has previous work experience at Staples. The favorite part of his job is that it is different every single day.

Fun Facts about Alex:

Q: What word would you use to describe the Buffalo Restoration team?
A: Caring

Q: Where would you travel if you could go anywhere?
A: Ireland

Jesse Dreyer, Water Removal Technician

Fun Facts about Jesse:

Q: If you were a car, what kind of car would you be?
A: An ice cream truck

Q: If you house was on fire, what three things would you grab?
A: My dog, my cat, my shoes

David Olson, Estimator/Sales

Fun Facts about David:

Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Helping families and businesses find resolution through difficult situations.

Q: Where would you travel if you could go anywhere?
A: Sail around the world


Community Involvement

Bozeman Fire Fighters 

As a business, we're passionate about giving back to the community that has supported us since 1991. We do what we can to support a number of different causes, with our time, services, and financial contributions. We support the following valuable community non-profits:

  • Reach Inc.
  • HAVEN
  • Special Olympics
  • Boy Scouts of America
  • Bozeman Chamber of Commerce
  • Belgrade Chamber of Commerce
  • Livingston Chamber of Commerce
  • Bozeman Library Foundation
  • Bozeman Firefighters L613
  • Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Gallatin County
  • The Lions Club
  • The Pioneer Museum
  • Bobcat Booster Club
  • Bobcat Quarter Back Club
  • Thrive
  •  

    We love our community!