Missoula, Montana — The Montana High Tech Business Alliance is pleased to announce that Randy Chesler, Glacier Bancorp President and CEO; Leland Johnson, ExcelliMatrix Founder and CEO; and Sam Lucas, Triple Tree LLC Co-Founder and CEO, have been elected by the membership to fill three vacant seats on the Board of Directors.
Randy Chesler has served as President/CEO of Glacier Bancorp, the largest publicly traded company in Montana with a market capitalization in excess of $4 billion. Glacier Bank has 16 Divisions in 8 states in the Rocky Mountain region, including Kalispell, Missoula, Helena, Bozeman, Billings, and Lewistown. Chesler brings over 30 years of experience in financial services and technology, serving as an executive in large corporations like Citi and Visa and as CEO of a San Francisco FinTech startup that was acquired.
“I look forward to joining the Montana High Tech Business Alliance board and continuing to help make Montana a great place for technology businesses,” Chesler said. “I think the opportunity ahead is very exciting and the MHTBA will play an important role in leading the way.”
Leland Johnson brings 30 years of experience in the technology arena with 15 of those years serving as a C-Level executive within the insurance industry. He founded Kalispell-based software development firm ExcelliMatrix in 2013 after serving as vice president of National Flood Services in Kalispell from 2002 to 2011. Johnson also serves as COO/CTO for Wildfire Defense Systems in Bozeman. In addition to his roles leading technology teams across the globe, Johnson finds time to give back to the Kalispell community, judging app competitions for Code Girls United.
“It’s a true honor to join the board of the Montana High Tech Business Alliance,” Johnson said. “Having been an active part of the Montana technology community for nearly 20 years, I think I understand the value and importance that MHTBA brings to our state, and I hope that my involvement can help take MHTBA to new heights.”
Sam Lucas is the co-founder, CEO and managing director of Triple Tree LLC, which has grown from a two-person startup to a profitable company with six employees since its founding in 2016. Lucas earned a degree in marketing from Montana State University in 2016, where he worked at the Blackstone LaunchPad as the marketing director for more than a year. Triple Tree was named a 2018 Startup to Watch by the Alliance and attended TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco with the MHTBA in 2018.
“I am both excited and grateful for the opportunity to help represent aspiring entrepreneurs, founders, and the next gen workforce in Montana,” Lucas said. “As a recent MSU grad and a first-time founder, my co-founder and I joined the Montana High Tech Business Alliance to build a professional network, find experienced mentors, and introduce our company to the technology community of Montana. Joining and embracing this community has been a staple to the growth of our business. I now look forward to joining the many great minds of the MHTBA to continue to help shape the growth of new business in Montana’s high tech sector.”
Chesler, Johnson, and Lucas join five other continuing board members:
- Kelly Schwager, board chair, Vice President of Global Communications at Oracle, Columbia Falls
- Jason Mittelstaedt, founding board member, Partner at Yellowstone Growth Partners, Bozeman, and former Chief Marketing Officer, RightNow Technologies
- Paige Williams, Founder and CEO, Audience Awards, Missoula
- Liz Marchi, CMO, Two Bear Capital, Polson
- Tom Stergios, Senior Vice President, Strategy & Corporate Development at Cognizant ATG, Missoula
“We’re excited to welcome Randy, Leland, and Sam to the Alliance Board of Directors, and believe they will add both a diversity and depth of experience to an already well-qualified board,” Christina Henderson, Alliance Executive Director, said. “We’re looking forward to learning from our new board members and working with them to make the Alliance a more valuable asset for our members and the wider tech community.”
“All three of our newest Board members embody the spirit of the high tech community and bring diverse talent, expertise and energy to the table,” Schwager said. “We are very fortunate to have them by our side as we continue to work together to help high tech and manufacturing companies grow and create more high-paying jobs in Montana.”
In accordance with the bylaws of the Montana High Tech Business Alliance, the Nominating Committee and Board reviewed all nominees submitted by the members and compiled a final list of the most qualified candidates.
As outlined in the call for nominations, board nominees must be founders, CEOs, or senior executives of organizations that are current dues-paying members of the Montana High Tech Business Alliance. The Alliance also strives for the Board to reflect the membership and thus sought a diverse pool of candidates:
- Representing geographic regions across Montana
- From varied sectors including tech and manufacturing
- Leading all stages of companies — start-up, growth, or mature
- Diverse in other ways such as gender, race, age, skills, professions and backgrounds
- In addition to the individual backgrounds/qualifications of all proposed candidates, we also took into consideration the profiles of the existing Board members and did our best to select a final slate of candidates – based on all nominations received – that would best provide a balanced mix to reflect the goals outlined above.
About the Alliance
Launched in 2014, the Montana High Tech Business Alliance is a nonpartisan, nonprofit statewide membership organization made up of 230 highly-engaged high-tech and manufacturing companies and affiliates creating high-paying jobs in Montana. Search Montana career opportunities at MTHighTech.org/Jobs. Photos and logo may be downloaded at MTHighTech.org/Media.