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 27 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.


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.

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 grandsons Zane and Easton. She also is a Stampin’ UP! Demonstrator and craft superhero.

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.

Ellen Beck, Marketing Director

Ellen  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 Bachelor of Arts degree 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.

Francine Cooper, Accounts Manager

Francine (Frannie) joined Buffalo Restoration in June of 2015.  She is a graduate of Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting.  Frannie received her CPA license in July of 2012.  She and her husband and their dog, Caddis moved to Montana where they enjoy the outdoors and fly fishing.

Nancy MacBride, Accounts Receivable Clerk

Nancy joined Buffalo Restoration as A/R Clerk in May of 2015.  A graduate of Eastern Kentucky University, Nancy was previously employed by the Montana Chamber of Commerce, American Chernet Corporation, Farcountry Press, and Montana Book and Toy Company.  Married for almost 37 years with three children and two grandchildren, Nancy spends her spare time watching sports and old movies, camping, hiking, and fishing.  She also loves to cook, garden, sew, and read.

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 four years of naval experience and served during Iraqi Freedom with two 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.

Tia Covert, Office Assistant

Tia joined the  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 lake wake boarding. She also enjoys long Harley rides exploring the awesome views that Montana has to offer.

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. In addition to his textile certifications, Randal is also certified in Mold and Sewage Damage Restoration, Water Damage Restoration, and Odor Control. In his spare time, Randal is active in his church and enjoys camping, boating, and spending time with his family.

Herbert Halvorson, Carpet Technician

Herbert started at Buffalo Restoration in 2012. He works extremely hard in his role as textile cleaner. In his spare time, Herbert volunteers at the MSU Sports concession stand and volunteers for Homeschool sporting events.

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 over 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.

David Olsen, Estimator/Sales

David joined Buffalo Restoration in May of 2014 as an estimator.  He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Construction Management from East Carolina University and a strong background in plumbing and general construction. In his spare time, David likes water sports, hiking, fishing, hunting and travel.

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.

Jeff Dehn, Project Manager

Jeff joined Buffalo Restoration as a project manager in October 2014. A native Montanan, Jeff holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Technology Education. He has a passion for building and brings over 20 years of experience in construction and contracting to the Buffalo team. Jeff is active in the Gallatin Valley where he is involved in non-profit work and where he officiates football. Jeff loves recreating with his wife and two young sons.

Wayde Lewis, Project Manager

Wayde has been part of the Buffalo team since 2009, he worked for Buffalo previously for four 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.

Nicholas Anderson, Water and Cleaning Department Manager

Nick joined Buffalo Restoration in May of 2006.  When Nick isn't helping manage disasters, he enjoys dirt biking, snowmobiling, camping, concerts and anything on the water.  In his spare time, Nick works on remodeling projects at his house.

George McAdams, Technician

George started with the Buffalo team in 1994. George holds 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 also is certified as a Mold and Sewage Remediation Technician from Restoration Consultants. George enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing, camping, and canoeing.

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!

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.

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.

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.

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.

Gabriel Lemieux, Mold Remediation Technician

Gabe joined Buffalo Restoration in May 2015.  When he is not in the field tackling mold, Gabe loves to play his guitar, longboard, ski, and snowboard.  He also makes videos of many of his activities to share.  Spare time also is spent camping, boating, hiking, and anything in the great outdoors.

Brandon Hoaks, Technician

Brandon, affectionately known as "Hoax," joined the Buffalo Herd in December of 2014.  Brandon began working at the age of 14 at Taco Bell and has worked on and off ever since.  He graduated from the Montana Youth Challenge Academy in December of 2011.  When he isn't working, Brandon LIVES to snowboard.

Tyler Yenter, Technician

Tyler joined Buffalo Restoration in March of 2015.  Born and raised in Wisconsin, Tyler spent time working in the field of restoration before moving to Montana.  An avid Packers Fan, Tyler moved to Montana to learn to fly fish.  When not helping customers put things back together, Tyler and his sister play in a five piece country band.

Daneena Stratton, Technician

Daneena, who sometimes answers to Shorty, Shortstack, or Muppet, may be tiny, but she holds her own with the rest of the members of the Herd.  Daneena joined Buffalo in January of 2015.  A student in Exercise Physiology at MSU, Daneena likes hiking, biking, camping, backpacking, reading, and traveling.

Johnny Klinger, Technician

Johnny started at Buffalo Restoration in May of 2015 as a Technician.  Previously, Johnny worked at Universal Athletics doing screen printing.  In his spare time, Johnny loves taking care of horses and watching the Florida Gators football team.

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 Hydro 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.

ROBERT L. WARDDRIP, JR., TECHNICIAN

Robert (Rob) was hired to work as a technician at Buffalo Restoration the summer of 2015.  Born in Wolf Point, Montana, Rob grew up in a military family.  When his dad retired in 1988, he moved the family to Bozeman.  Rob went to Jr. High, High School, and Montana State University in Bozeman.

Meet the Herd

Click on the name or picture to read profiles

Ben Yanker Gail Yanker
Christopher Yanker Ellen Beck
   
Francine Cooper  Nancy MacBride 
   
Phil Blodgett Tia Covert
   
 Randal Halvorson  Herbert Halvorson
   
Ryan Hostetter David Olson
 
Kevin Dineen Jeff Dehn


Wayde Lewis  Nick Anderson 
   
George McAdams Nick Gaudenzi
   
Logan Hoge Derek Musick
   
Chance Fisher Shane Sherman
 Gabriel Lemieux Brandon Hoaks
   
Tyler Yenter Daneena Stratton
   
Johnny Klinger Javier Medina
   
Robert L. Warddrip, Jr.