Montana High Tech Business Alliance Board of Advisors Biographies
Assistant Vice President of Information Systems, Kampgrounds of America, Billings
John has been leading the technology team at KOA since the fall of 2014, when he joined to oversee the development of the company’s new Campground Management software called KampSight 2 (or K2). The new software replaces a legacy system whose roots date back to the mid 90’s. The new platform will be cloud based, and delivered entirely through a light-footprint web interface. John has over 25 years in technology, working for companies large and small, public and private, For profit, and not for profit.
Throughout his career, Adams’ focus has been database design, applications, and process development and control. Early in his career it was developing systems to track and manage the vendors of the Nasdaq Stock Market’s market data (stock quotes). From there John worked for the Rouse Company, a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) that focused primarily on planned community development, shopping center management. After his time with the Rouse Company, John was asked to lead the development division of a small technology consulting firm, Phoenix TS, where he focused on building websites for small to mid-sized firms with an emphasis on running your business from the web.
After Phoenix TS, John joined the mortgage industry working for Fieldstone Mortgage where John created and implemented a Project Management Organization (PMO) and developed an hybrid/agile development methodology. Prior to joining KOA, John was the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the American Board of Radiology (ABR), where he orchestrated a technology overhaul of the ABR systems for tracking initial certification and maintenance of certification for Board Certified Diagnostic Radiologists, Radiation Oncologists, and Medical Physicists.
Senior Vice President, Chief Operations Officer, D.A. Davidson, Great Falls
Mr. Austin joined D.A. Davidson Companies in 2008 with more than 25 years of operational and technology management experience in the financial services industry.
Prior to joining D.A. Davidson Companies, he held management positions with Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis, where he was Vice President in Brokerage Technology, Project Management and Business Transformation. His career has also included management position in Brokerage Technology with Norwest Investment Services and SunGard Financial Systems in Minneapolis. Mr. Austin serves on the D.A. Davidson & Co. Board of Directors.
VP Customer Operations and Marketing, Blackfoot, Missoula
Joel has 25 plus years of experience in the technology sector in business leadership, product management, corporate and product marketing, and marketing sciences. He has held his current position since 2011. He is responsible for providing executive leadership for Blackfoot’s customer operations and marketing strategies.
President, Arrow Solutions Group, Billings
Kathy Boelter is the President of Arrow Solutions Group, an I.T. Staffing & Recruiting company serving Montana and surrounding states. She brings 20+ years’ experience in understanding labor forces, staff augmentation and project management, primarily in the technology and engineering space. Kathy is active in the state business community and currently serves on the board of directors for Montana Ambassadors, St. Vincent Healthcare, as well as being Board President of the Montana Chamber Foundation. As an advocate for bringing the Montana tech community together, Kathy also co-founded TecNet, a networking group comprised of regional technology professionals.
President, CEO at WGM Group, Inc, Missoula
Brent Campbell leads WGM Group, Inc. in leading civil engineering, land use planning, landscape architecture, transportation engineering, environmental services, water resources, surveying, and historical and cultural resource management. Brent has a Bachelors of Science in Civil Engineering from Montana State University and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Montana.
Director Engineering, SoFi, Helena
Matt directs all aspects of SoFi’s engineering; teams projects, and architecture. Matt is a extremely self-motivated engineer and director that utilizes his strong technical background to implement solutions using appropriate technologies. He is excited to engage and learn about new challenging languages and projects. Matt pursues open source solutions first and when possible always contributes to the success of open source projects. He prefers living on the bleeding edge of new frameworks, devops, and languages. Matt is able to communicate complex technical solutions to business users fluently and effortlessly. Matt has an Associates degree in Computer Science from the University of Montana and Bachelors degree in Computer Science from Carroll College.
President, Education Logistics, Missoula
Jason Corbally leads the company toward new milestones, working closely with school districts, government, and industry to improve existing products and develop new ones, making EDULOG the industry leader in transportation management systems. Jason started at EDULOG in 2004 while attending the University of Montana and has paved the way for new partnerships, launching EDULOG’s innovative technology into the international arena. Selected as one of Missoula’s top “20 under 40” young business professionals, Jason also serves as a committee chair on Governor Steve Bullock’s Main Street Montana Project and on the Montana High Tech Business Alliance Advisory Board. A native of Butte, Montana, he and his wife are the parents of Peyton and Liam.
Founder & CEO, LMG Security, Missoula
Sherri Davidoff is the CEO of LMG Security and the co-author of “Network Forensics: Tracking Hackers Through Cyberspace” (Prentice Hall, 2012). She has over fifteen years of experience as a cyber security professional, specializing in digital forensics, penetration testing and security awareness training. Sherri has authored courses for the SANS Institute and Black Hat, and conducted onsite security training for the Department of Defense, Google, Comcast, Los Alamos National Laboratories, and many other organizations. She is a faculty member at the Pacific Coast Banking School, where she teaches cybersecurity classes. Sherri is a GIAC-certified forensic examiner (GCFA) and penetration tester (GPEN), and holds her degree in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering from MIT.
Director, President,Technology Transfer & MonTEC, Missoula
Joe spearheads the University of Montana’s economic development interests by working closely with local, state, and global partners to stimulate job creation in Montana. As the University of Montana’s Director of Technology Transfer, Joe’s management responsibilities include the University’s intellectual property and licensing portfolio as well as spin-out companies. During his term as President of MonTEC, Fanguy revitalized the Missoula based 32,000 square foot business incubator as the hub for entrepreneurship and start-ups in Western Montana. In 2014, Fanguy also secured funding and launched the University of Montana Blackstone LaunchPad program, a world-renowned platform for supporting student let entrepreneurial ventures of all disciplines. Prior to his 2009 arrival in Montana, Joe served as assistant director in Mississippi State University’s Office of Technology Commercialization, where he also served as a licensing associate for several years. Joe’s educational background is in the field of chemistry, with a Doctorate and Master’s degree from Mississippi State University and a Bachelor’s degree from Nicholls State University in South Louisiana.
Vice President of Marketing, PrintingForLess.com, Livingston
A Montana native, Daniel is currently the VP of Marketing for PFL and is responsible for the creation and execution of PFL’s strategic marketing initiatives, demand generation and evolving the company’s brand. Daniel draws from a strong technology background and over ten years of experience in marketing at PFL. He has a proven track record of implementing multi-channel marketing systems that leverage technology to drive awareness, acquire customers, grow sales, and improve the customer experience. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business marketing from Montana State University. Prior to PFL Daniel worked in marketing at Montana State University’s athletic department, and as wild-land firefighter for the US Forest Service.
Senior Director, Applications Product Management, Oracle, Bozeman
Chris is currently the Senior Director and Applications Product Management Director at Oracle in Bozeman. Prior to working at Oracle, Chris worked for RightNow Technologies, Siebel Systems and Hewlett-Packard. Chris has a Bachelor of Science in Economic and English from the University of Pennsylvania The Wharton School and a Masters of Business Administration in Marketing, Finance and Entrepreneurship from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management.
President, Elixiter, Bozeman
Andrew is a veteran of the Software-as-a-Service space. He served in a wide range of positions at RightNow Technologies (acquired by Oracle) overseeing product messaging, campaigns, web properties, marketing automation, events and marketing analytics, driving eight years of continual growth from 16 million to 200+ million dollars in revenue reaching a 1+ billion dollar market capitalization. Andrew holds an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University.
He loves the balance of capabilities, flexibility and simplicity the Marketo platform offers. Knowing how difficult this is to achieve he can say with authority that Marketo pulls it off better than anyone.
There’s a reason he’s Elixiter’s Big Cheese: he lives squarely in the world of AND – “I love being a great husband AND raising three fantastic kids AND providing great careers for my employees in Montana AND serving our clients who want to get the most out of their Marketo investment,” he said. “AND is just more fun.” Maybe this is a result of his name, ANDrew; maybe it’s because he’s always dreamed big with his eyes wide open.
Managing Director of Benefit Planning, PayneWest Insurance, Billings
Troy is a native of Montana who served in the United States Coast Guard from 1988 – 1992. He graduated from MSU Billings in 1995 with a Bachelor’s of Sociology/Criminology. Upon graduating college, Troy embarked upon a career as a deputy sheriff for the Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Department from 1997 – 2000. Troy ventured into pharmaceutical and biotech sales next. In 2008 Troy transitioned into a leadership role in the health insurance industry as a district sales manager for a local carrier. He was later promoted to the position of senior sales executive, where he managed marketing staff and was responsible for external agent relations. Troy received the top sales award three out of six years while in this position. He received the “MSU Billings Outstanding Alumni of The Year Award” for 2014. Troy joined PayneWest Insurance in April of 2015 as the managing director of benefit planning. Troy joined PayneWest Insurance because they have a team of people who are experts at helping customers understand and manage their risk. He and his wife, Lori, have three children and have been married for over 25 years. They enjoy watching their children’s sporting events and traveling.
Founder, COO, Chief Information Officer, Applied Training Resources (ATR), Hamilton
Elliot is the Managing Director-Founder of Applied Training Resources in 1990. Experienced visionary and strong strategist, the Vanguard SmartProcedures product is his creation. Elliot has been leading Applied Training Resources for over 25 years and developing a wide-array of high-valued industrial software solutions. Elliot has a Bachelors of Science in Chemistry and a Masters of Science in Chemical Engineering.
Vice President, First Interstate Bank, Missoula
Sue Larew is a Vice President for First Interstate Bank responsible for Retail/Consumer Banking, Marketing, Public Relations and Community outreach. She has been with First Interstate Bank for 13 years. Before joining them, she was with Bessemer Trust where she was Senior Vice President working with Clients focused on comprehensive wealth management and Business succession planning. Prior to this, Sue was a Senior Vice President, Consumer Executive at Bank of America in Miami, FL, responsible for sales, operations and administrative management for 73 banks. She study at the University of Colorado and has her BS in Business Administration and her MBA from the University of Miami.
In addition to her career, she has always been involved in her communities that she has lived. She is currently and Advisory Board Member for the University of Montana School of Business. She is also an Advisory Board Member for the Montana High Tech Alliance. She is on the board for the Max Wave River Enhancement project.
Founder President, Loenbro, Great Falls
Born and raised in the Sun River Valley in Montana, Paul Leach gained an early appreciation for hard work and dedication. Upon graduating from Simms High school, Paul sought to earn a degree in the trades by attending Lincoln Electric welding school. He brought his skills back to Montana where he started contract welding for the Montana Refining Company, now known as Calumet Montana Refining. His experience within the refinery walls provided him with the opportunity to found an enterprising company which eventually became Loenbro. Paul continues to live in the Sun River Valley and raise his four sons with his talented wife, Kristy. He has a passion for motorsports and actively races his two modified stock cars as well as overseeing Loenbro Motorsports which participates in the Red Bull Global Rally Cross series.
In 1998 brothers Paul and Jon Leach began building a reputation for taking on demanding welding jobs and delivering quality work, often exceeding the expectations of the company leaders who hired them. As our team of valuable employees and list of successful projects grew, so did the number of products and services that we offer across Montana, Wyoming and the Dakotas. Today, Loenbro professionals provide a single-source solution for energy services and construction across the region. Our tough but values-driven crews are changing the way our customers view contractors. We hire the best and cross-train our employees so they are proficient in many skills. They use the latest technology to bring our partners the results they expect. We are “Leading the Change” in the energy services industry.
Chief Operating Officer, Privacy and Security Officer, Pulsara, Bozeman
Have you ever met someone who leaves you in awe, saying “I don’t know how she does it?!” Well, you have now. When Cynthia isn’t at the piano singing, outdoors with her family on hiking trails, gardening, or acting in television and film projects, she is putting her experience and education in healthcare, law, and start-up companies to use at Pulsara.
Here, her unique understanding of how mobile communications are leading the change in care collaboration make her an outstanding executive leader and invaluable part of the Pulsara team. Prior to Pulsara, Cynthia led business development for CrossTx, a Bozeman healthcare startup with a care coordination solution in the cloud. She was also a Principal Consultant with NetLink LLC, advising senior leaders in next-generation healthcare technology enterprises.
Cynthia earned a law degree with an emphasis on health law and policy from Stanford Law School, where she later served as Chief of Staff. In this role, she advised the University’s VP for Medical Affairs, Medical School Dean, and Cabinet in areas of strategy and operations and was spokesperson for the institution with internal and external constituents on initiatives surrounding new technologies for patient care and teaching.
Before joining the Stanford leadership team, Cynthia was an attorney at Foley and Lardner in its Healthcare Industry Group. Cynthia currently serves as Chair of the Board at Anderson School District in Bozeman, Montana. She is a frequent speaker at civic and education events, and is involved in several professional organizations.
Partner, Dorsey and Whitney, Missoula
Jack counsels start-up companies, private and public companies, venture capital and angel investors, individuals, underwriters, and banks, and advises in corporate and securities transactional matters. Jack is a partner in Dorsey’s venture capital and emerging companies and mergers and acquisitions groups, and is the manager of the Missoula office. Jack’s experience also includes advising clients in matters related to project finance, cooperative law and Indian law.
Founder, Frontier Fund 2, Polson
Mom, wife, daughter, entrepreneur, risk taker and thinker working at growing old and wise with grace and humor and finding my give back purpose in life. I live on a beautiful ranch with my husband Jon, our Corgis Winnie and Ranger and two herds of cattle: Black Angus and Wagyu and abundant wildlife. I am the Founder of Frontier Angel Fund 2. After 10 years of working in the angel investment world, I am all in for this effort. We have a world class team of talent in Montana around this effort to build a smart, effective, equity capital network for early stage companies in Montana and beyond.
Founder, CEO, Montana Instruments Corporation, Bozeman
Manufacturer of high performance optical and cryogenic research equipment for industry and research institutions worldwide.
Luke is a 5th generation Montanan and was raised in northwest Montana in Eureka and Kalispell. After studying physics at PLU in Tacoma, Washington for two years, he dropped school to go race bicycles in Europe to chase a dream of racing professionally. He reasoned his legs would get slow long before his brain so he’d better do this now. Two years later he came back to the states to race bicycles on a professional US team called Shaklee, which had four riders in the 2000 Olympics that year.
Luke did make it back to school and finished a mechanical engineering degree at Montana State University. In his first job out of school he was designing cryogenic systems for defense applications. It was here that he gained an appreciation for how difficult it is to study materials at temperatures near absolute zero, and also that there were many people across the world who could benefit if someone “made cold science simple”. With some seed money and a small team of engineers and scientists, the first turnkey optical cryostat, the “Cryostation” was created and Montana Instruments was born. Luke has since transitioned in his role from developing technology, to providing vision, developing people, and building a healthy culture at Montana Instruments. He loves his job!
CEO, Goodworks Ventures, Missoula
Dawn McGee, BALLE Board Treasurer, is the CEO of Good Works Ventures, LLC a Montana based company that invests in high social impact companies. Goodworks is affiliated with Hellgate Venture Network, which facilitates social networking both online and offline among entrepreneurs and advisors engaged in building growth businesses in Western Montana. She is also President of the High Stakes Foundation, which provides support to visionary people and organizations that are leading and implementing changes that create a sustainable future for Montana. Dawn has more than 20 years experience in business, law, finance, and entrepreneurship, and has been a principal or analyst at Global Partners, Underdog Ventures, and the Unitus Equity Fund. She loves to play outside and play music as often as possible.
CEO, Proof Research, Columbia Falls
A resident of Northwestern Montana and Columbia Falls area, Larry Murphy brings PROOF Research 25 years of executive management and leadership experience in the semiconductor industry. Larry has most recently served as the CEO of the Thompson Technology Group. Previously, Larry served in leadership roles including President and COO of Semitool, Inc. and President and CEO of Tosoh SMD. Larry holds his Bachelor of Science degree in Geophysics and Geology from Michigan State University. He earned his Master of Business Administration degree from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
General Manager, Allied Materials, Kalispell
Rick Plavidal has been the General Manager of the Packaging, Plating and Cleans Business Unit of Applied Materials since May of 2014. Rick has over 25 years of leadership experience in the semiconductor and cleaning technology industries. Prior roles include CEO/CTO of CNX Technologies which developed new cleaning technology, as well as General Manager of the Etch Products Division and Environmental Solutions Product Division at Applied Materials. His background also includes Key Account GM, Chief Marketing Officer, and Head of Business. Rick has a BS degree in Engineering Science from Penn State and completed the Stanford Executive Program. He holds multiple patents in semiconductor equipment and mechanical structure and has patents pending in other fields including solar, laser, and critical cleaning. Among his many interests, Rick enjoys various outdoor activities including skiing, mountaineering, sailing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
CEO, Montana West, Ronan
Presently Jay is President & Chief Executive Officer at CommunityTel, Inc. and is the Chairman & Chief Executive Officer at Ronan Telephone Company. He has worked in every aspect of a small independent telephone utility, including outside plant, central office, engineering, commercial, business and regulatory functions. Jay is President of the Board of Directors for the Montana Cable Telecommunications Association. Other current affiliations include Ronan Chamber of Commerce, Lake County Community Development Corporation. He is an ongoing student of history of the Flathead Reservation, Montana and the United States. His other hobbies include competitive sailing, cross country skiing, bicycling, flying and horses. Jay has been an active member of the community in many aspects and resides with his wife Cynthia in Charlo, Montana.
President, CEO, Century Companies, Lewistown
Tim currently is the Chief Executive Officer of Century Companies Inc. Century is a leading construction services company in Montana and Wyoming. Prior to joining Century, Robertson was Founder and President of Marketlink Incorporated, a construction management and marketing firm based in Appleton, Wisconsin. Tim brings 20 years of experience in the construction and construction materials industry to EverLog Systems. His expertise in marketing, sales, and general business management is helping EverLog Systems become a market leader.
Tim graduated with a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Tim is active in Young Presidents Organization, and the Montana Pilot’s Association, where he currently serves as President of the Central Hangar. Tim has also served on numerous boards of trade associations, for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. Tim has lectured extensively to AGC, CBDA and private companies on marketing and business management issues for construction companies. Tim lives in Lewistown, MT. with his wife and two children.
Executive Vice President Senior Commercial Banker, Rocky Mountain Bank, Billings
Scott has 29 plus years of experience, leading all areas of banking and business development. His effective experience in strategic planning and goal setting, along with his proven skills at developing managers; building and motivating sales teams that exceed goals are all welcome additions to the RMB team. Scott has vast experience in managing diverse product lines, commercial lending, deposits and cash management. Scott has been highly involved in community organizations, most recently serving as the Chair for the June E. Nylen Cancer Center Foundation, President of Girls, Inc. of Sioux City and Treasurer for the First Tee of Woodbury County.
Founder, President, CEO, Senior Designer, Spika Design and Manufacturing, Lewistown
Tom founded Spika Design and Manufacturing along with his wife Carol, and as CEO has been directly responsible for its growth, productivity and measured development into a world-class designer and manufacturer of work platforms. Tom performs in the capacity of Senior Designer on the development of all Spika products. His background and skills include 3D solid modeling, design, and structural engineering in addition to being a subject matter expert in OSHA-compliant work standards.
Tom started his career operating the family farm with Carol, focusing primarily on growing hay, wheat, and barley, and raising cattle and sheep. At that time he also operated a small welding company. Later, Tom gained extensive experience and skills working as a welder and machinist, and ultimately advanced through the ranks to production manager for HCR, Inc., a local stainless steel fabrication company.
An alumni of the Metals Technology program at Montana State University – Northern, Tom has served as the chair of the Montana Manufacturing Extension Center, the chair of the Montana Manufacturing Association, a member of the Montana Chamber of Commerce, and a member of the Lewistown Area Chamber of Commerce. He is a charter member of the Central Montana Manufacturing Alliance and the Montana High Tech Business Alliance.
In his free time (what little of it there is), Tom enjoys working on his hot rods and riding his motorcycle. He is fiercely passionate about his company, and tirelessly committed to developing a better product. You can tell he’s a Montanan because of his entrepreneurial spirit, his willingness to take risk when warranted, and his incredible work ethic.
Vice President, Advanced Technology Group, Missoula
Tom has more than 25 years of experience working with service providers in the Quote-to-Cash space. His career has focused on the communications market with a primary emphasis in CRM, Order Management, BPM, and Billing. Tom has held senior positions in development, operations, and business development leading consulting and product organizations including Accenture, Axiom, IBM, Cygent, and Convergys.
Tom is a leader of ATG’s Quote-to-Cash practice and also is General Manager of the Missoula Solution Center. Most recently, he has been working with clients to understand the most effective use of emerging cloud solutions.
Tom holds a BS in Finance from Santa Clara University. He is active with several local charities in Missoula, enjoys all the outdoor activities available in Montana, and is an avid runner.
Executive Director, TechLink, Bozeman
Will helped to found TechLink in 1996 and has played a key role in transforming TechLink into a nationally recognized center. Will has over 20 years of experience directing technology transfer and R&D programs. Besides managing TechLink, Will served as the leader of a National Science Foundation-funded “Partnerships for Innovation” project, from 2002-2006, which played a key role in starting up 12 new technology firms. He has extensive, hands-on experience brokering technology transfer agreements for DoD. Will has an MA degree in geography from Durham University, England, and a PhD in geography from the University of Texas at Austin. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University. Will is a member of the international Licensing Executive Society (LES) and is a Certified Licensing Professional.
Project Designer, CTA Architects Engineers
Jimmy is an Associate Owner, Project Designer, and Business Development Representative for CTA, a 400+ person Architecture and Engineering firm with 17 offices in eight states and two Canadian provinces. Based in Bozeman, Jimmy’s responsibilities include building new client relationships and guiding clients through the design phases of projects. He has designed a range of projects from a 120,000 square foot mixed-use building in Bozeman, Montana to a 900 square foot replica one-room schoolhouse in Fishtail, Montana which was awarded a 2016 Montana AIA Design Award. The trend toward growth in high-tech companies around Montana has stirred Jimmy’s interest in developing relationships with the out-of-the box thinkers of this industry. He is considered a trusted advisor when discussing creative solutions to building and programming needs and is honored to be a part of the Montana High Tech Business Alliance. During his spare time, Jimmy can be found with his wife and two kids playing around Montana or working on art in his garage.
Business Technology Officer, NorthWestern Energy, Butte
Jeanne Vold currently serves NorthWestern Energy as Business Technology Officer. She holds a BSEE degree from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. Jeanne has 29 years of professional experience which includes 10 years in industrial and high speed manufacturing and 19 years in the utility industry. She has been with NorthWestern Energy for 17 years and has held various positions throughout the Business Technology organization. She has been in her current function for nine years.
President, CEO, First Security Bank, Bozeman
Steve began his banking career at First Security Bank in 1979. He joined the bank again in 2013 as Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer. Steve has 37 years of banking experience in multiple areas, including lending and branch management. He is a Bozeman native, Montana State University graduate and was winner of the 2006 Bozeman Chamber Community Excellence Award. Steve currently serves on the Heart of the Valley Board of Directors.