140 tech leaders gathered at Greg & Susan Gianforte’s home in Bozeman for the July 5, 2018, Montana High Tech Business Alliance member reception. Members traveled from across the state, including Billings, Rocky Boy, Polson, Hamilton, Helena, and Missoula to connect with other tech leaders. Photos by Katy Spence.
Connect: New member and Ruffato Business Startup Challenge winner Storysquares connects with members, seeks Tech Co-Founder
New member and Ruffato Business Startup Challenge winner Jenny Sheets, founder of educational technology company Storysquares
, connected with members at her first Alliance member reception. Sheets learned about the Alliance’s new jobs board at the event, where she currently has a posting for a Tech Co-Founder
Promote: Zoot Enterprises and Blackmore Sensors and Analytics give lightning talks about their growing companies
Eric Hathaway, Zoot Enterprises
Vice President of Marketing, gives a lighting talk about Zoot Enterprises in Bozeman. Hathaway said Zoot is excited to be involved in the Alliance and in the greater community. Last month, Zoot named Tony Rosanova as the new President and CTO after having been with the company since 1999. The company also opened an on-site daycare in April 2018, providing childcare for employees’ children ages six weeks to six years.
Stephen Crouch, CTO of Blackmore Sensors and Analytics
, talks about Blackmore’s growth trajectory in both the defense and autonomous driving spaces. Blackmore produces 3D imaging lidar systems. Crouch said the firm works with a myriad of companies and industries all over the world as they all work to tackle challenges in automation. In 2018, Blackmore raised an $18 million Series B round from BMW iVentures, Toyota AI Ventures, Millennium, and Next Frontier Capital.
Accelerate: CEOs discuss workforce training needs and opportunities across the state
CEOs from across the state came together to discuss workforce development across Montana’s tech landscape in the Foundant Technologies classroom in Bozeman.
Speakers, from left to right, included Brett Gunnick, Dean, MSU College of Engineering, Jayne Morrow, PhD, a remote worker from Chinook who also works for the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Paul Gladen, Co-founder, Montana Code School, and John Adams, CIO of Kampgrounds of America. Not pictured is speaker Travis Wheeler, Co-chair, UM Computer Science.
Watch for a upcoming story summarizing the conversation at the Roundtable. Speakers talked about expanding data skills in rural Montana, industry-led solutions for Billing’s talent challenges, and updates from the University of Montana Computer Science Department, Montana State University School of Engineering, and the Montana Code School.