About Us

The Blackstone LaunchPad at the University of Montana

The Blackstone LaunchPad powered by Techstars at the University of Montana, is a co-curricular, experiential, campus program designed to introduce entrepreneurship as a viable career path and develop entrepreneurial skills and mindsets through individualized coaching, ideation and venture creation support. Influenced by the enterprising heritage of Blackstone and its founders, the Blackstone Charitable Foundation is directing the firm's resources and intellectual capital to support entrepreneurship nationwide and globally.


Entrepreneurial activity is often crucial in the growth of successful businesses, industries, and communities. Built on a platform of entrepreneurship, Blackstone and Techstars believe in investing in enterprises that have the potential to stimulate economic opportunity and provide value.


To secure an entrepreneurial culture within the Montana University System community.

Core Values:

  1. Inspire pursuits of passion.

  2. Empower experiential entrepreneurship.

  3. Catalyze innovative, collaborative community.

  4. Encourage diverse participation.

  5. Commit to long-term impact.


Paul Gladen

Paul Gladen

Director, Blackstone LaunchPad at the University of Montana

Morgan Slemberger

Morgan Slemberger

Marketing and Operations Manager

Blackstone LaunchPad Student Staff


Angelina Rocca - Startup Events Director

Raises awareness, engagement, and participation in the competitions across multiple constituencies statewide.

Talia Nicholls - PYP Program Manager

Plans and coordinates for Pursue your Passions, a women's entrepreneurial opportunity on campus, and advocates for women's equity and prosperity through BLP.

Dylan Berget - NSF Intern

Create a STEM-focused ecosystem which successfully commercializes research and innovations.

Jeff Hyer - Film Editor

Storyteller of entrepreneurs on campus and in the community who have used Accelerate Montana services.

Kayla Francis - Women's Entrepreneurship Coordinator

Event and course coordinator for Pursue Your Passions, a women's entrepreneurship course on campus.

Mary Fewer - Manager of Client Experiences & Team Facilitator

Plots and streamlines the onboarding process for new clients that allows the most enjoyable client experience while maximizing the time of the director.
Jacob Treece Headshot

Jacob Treece - Office Manager

Oversees office and employee operations as well as the coordination of events facilitated by the LaunchPad.