The Entrepreneur in Residence program includes lectures and mentorship sessions with experienced entrepreneurs. The goal of the Entrepreneur in Residence program is to expose students to real-world practical instruction in the formation and advancement of new business ventures that can result in viable businesses. The program begins with a kickoff lecture followed by a pitch night where multidisciplinary teams present their proposals. Up to 12 proposals are selected for further mentoring.
The Entrepreneur in Residence visits monthly with the multidisciplinary teams working on a variety of entrepreneurial projects. The program is open to current Carroll College students, Carroll alumni, and Carroll College faculty and staff who have innovative entrepreneurial projects.
Current Entrepreneur in Residence
Brian Elliott is the current Entrepreneur in Residence at Carroll College. Brian is currently leading the expansion of SOVRN into Montana. Born and raised in Helena, MT, he chased his dreams of moto and surf down to southern California where he spent a few years making friends with everyone but the sharks. He moved to Boise in 2006 where he worked in the action sports industry managing athletes, marketing products and making connections. Cross-trained as a fun facilitator and relationship builder, Brian spearheads our client engagements. When he’s not doing that you’ll likely find him on two wheels, at a lake with his wife and two kids, or acting out an 80s action movie. Or all three.
Past Entrepreneurs in Residence
Loren Brown, President/CEO of First Security Bank of Helena
Carroll's 2018 Entrepreneur in Residence is Loren Brown '04, President/CEO of First Security Bank of Helena. Mr. Brown kicked off the program with a public lecture entitled, "Why Community Banking Matters". In addition to sharing his background and experience with entrepreneurship as well as observations about Helena, Brown discussed differences between community banks, credit unions and other banks, and how banks can make our community a better place and are the first place for businesses.
John McCarvel, CEO of Vitality Corporation
The 2015-16 Entrepreneur in Residence, John McCarvel, was a 1979 Carroll College graduate and member of Carroll College’s Board of Trustees. McCarvel noted that "as a Carroll College alum, I have drawn strong correlations between my family upbringing and Carroll College education to my successes in high tech and consumer goods." McCarvel brought extensive global experience and business acumen to the Entrepreneur in Residence Program. He serves as the CEO of Vitality Corporation and is the former CEO and President of Crocs, Inc. (2010-2014). He was instrumental in building the company’s global operations infrastructure, global wholesale and direct to consumer channels, as well as spearheading Crocs’ Asian business operations. Prior to joining Crocs, McCarvel served in executive roles in the high tech industry for 25 years. McCarvel's latest ventures include investments in multiple start-up companies. McCarvel's work took him and his family to San Jose, California; Boulder, Colorado; Boise, Idaho and internationally to Singapore and Paris.
Alex (Papu) Rincon
A 2003 graduate of Carroll's business department, Rincon served on Carroll College's Board of Trustees and is the founder and owner of four0six, a speciality clothing store in downtown Helena. Rincon was a past recipient of the SBA's Montana Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award and selected to participate in the White House's Champions of Change in D.C. While at Carroll, Rincon combined majors in Business Administration, Spanish, and Visual Arts, which influenced his desire to "create a brand that revolves around art, music, and the quality of life in Helena." Among the challenges Rincon described when starting a business was "financing, getting the capital to turn your ideas into reality. It is important to capitalize on everyone`s specialized abilities and to use connections."
2014 Entrepreneur in Residence, Greg Gianforte, is a businessman and entrepreneur who founded of RightNow Technologies, a customer relationship management software company. Gianforte served as the U.S. Representative for Montana's at-large congressional district before being elected as Montana's current governor.
RightNow Technologies was Gianforte’s fifth successful software start-up. Gianforte grew the publicly traded technology company to over $225M in annual revenue with over 1000 employees worldwide before selling to Oracle in 2011. Gianforte has been a guest lecturer at Harvard Business School, University of California-Berkeley, Stanford University, Cornell University, London School of Business, Manchester School of Business, and Warwick School of Business.