Christopher B. Swartley

Christopher B. Swartley

Missoula, Montana

Chris graduated from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill with honors in 1972, and the University of Montana School of Law, with honors in 1976, where he served on the Law Review. Through high school and college Chris worked in Glacier National Park and settled permanently in Missoula in 1971. After law school Chris practiced in Missoula for 25 years with Datsopoulos, MacDonald and Lind, and for the past 10 years as a solo practitioner.

During his career he has increasingly focused on commercial practice, including  banking, real estate, construction and development, and business transactions. In 1983 Chris joined the board of directors of First Security Bank of Missoula, now a division of Glacier Bank, and has continued in that capacity for 30 years, gaining expertise in all types of secured transactions. He has held an “AV” rating from Martindale Hubbell since 2001. Chris serves as a mediator in commercial and real estate disputes, and as a volunteer with the State Bar of Mt. on the Fee Arbitration Panel and Medical Legal Panel. He has testified as an expert witness in banking and real estate secured transactions. He is admitted in the state and federal courts of  Montana and has practiced before the American Arbitration Association in commercial disputes.

Chris and his wife Mary Jo, an education professional, have 2 adult children.

Areas of Practice

  • 50% Banking
  • 25% Real Estate
  • 25% Commercial Transactions

Bar Admissions

  • Montana, 1976
  • U.S. District Court District of Montana, 1976
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 1976


  • University of Montana School of Law, Missoula, Montana
    • J.D. - 1976
    • Honors: With Honors
    • Law Review: University of Montana Law Review, 1975 - 1976
  • University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill , North Carolina
    • B.A. - 1972
    • Honors: With Honors
    • Major: English

Representative Clients

  • First Security Bank of Missoula - Division of Glacier Bancorp, Inc.
  • CLC Restaurants, Inc. (Taco Bell Franchisee)
  • Riverside Contracting, Inc.

Honors and Awards

  • 'AV' rating in Martindale Hubbell
  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • State Bar of Montana, 1976 - 2012
  • Western Montana Bar Association, 1976 - 2012

Past Employment Positions

  • Datsopoulos MacDonald and Lind, Associate and Partner, 1976 - 2001
  • Solo Practice, 2001 - 2012

Pro Bono Activities

  • Montana Medical Legal Panel, 1980 - 2012
  • State Bar Fee Arbitration Panel, 1990 - 2012