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Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series

Image of the College of Business and Economics building masked in blue and orange squares

Connecting Entrepreneurs, students and the community

Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series seeks to connect successful entrepreneurs with students and the community to share stories and advice in a casual, open setting. A faculty panel will ask questions about entrepreneurship and encourage members of the audience to share inquiries of their own.

Entrepreneur Connect will be held twice a year, once in the fall during the Kauffman Foundation’s Global Entrepreneurship Week and once in the spring.

Entrepreneur Connect celebrates fresh perspectives, taking risks and bringing new ideas to life.

The next Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series will be held in fall 2019.

Past Events

Starting ClickBank and Kount

Founder Eileen Langan Barber and Founding CEO Brad Wiskirchen Share Their Stories

This event was held February 6, 2019
Video coming soon.

ClickBank is one of the largest online retailers with patented affiliate tracking, and has a vast offering of more than 500,000 products—making sales in 180 countries with more than $5 billion in lifetime gross sales. Kount Kount is the leading digital fraud prevention solution, used by 6,500 leading brands globally. Keynetics, the parent company of ClickBank and co-owner of Kount, has grown to become Idaho’s largest privately held technology company.

Eileen Barber

Eileen Langan Barber
Director and co-founder of Keynetics Inc.

Eileen co-founded Keynetics along with Geoff Hoyl and Dr. Timothy Barber in 1998 and has served on its board of directors since that time. Eileen has been involved in the continued growth and expansion of Keynetics and subsidiaries ClickBank and Kount, building a global reputation for quality solutions in the e-commerce industry.

In addition to her continued service on the Keynetics and its subsidiaries board of directors, Eileen has served Keynetics in various capacities including president of Keynetics (1998 – 2005), corporate treasurer, Audit Committee member and Compensation Committee member.

Eileen currently serves on the board of several non-profits including, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Boise State University Foundation, Trailhead, and Small Village Foundation.

Eileen earned a bachelor of arts in chemistry from Virginia Tech in 1991.

Brad Wiskirchen

Bradley J. Wiskirchen
CEO of Kount

Brad Wiskirchen is the founding CEO at Kount — which is the premier fraud prevention solution for card-not present transactions. Kount protects many of the world’s largest card-not-present merchants, and some of the largest acquiring banks and payment platforms. Kount is owned by CVC Capital Partners and Keynetics Inc.

Prior to December 2015, Wiskirchen was also CEO of Keynetics and Executive Chairman of Keynetics’ other subsidiary, ClickBank. Wiskirchen joined Keynetics in 2005. Under his guidance, Keynetics became one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest privately held technology companies, and ClickBank grew to be one of the world’s largest online retailers of digital goods.

Among his many other community involvements, Wiskirchen was the chairman of the board of the Salt Lake City Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in 2014 and 2015. He was a member of the board for three years prior to serving as the Chairman. He currently serves on the High-Level Advisory Group of the International Monetary Fund’s Interdepartmental Working Group on Finance and Technology.

He was awarded a juris doctor from the University of Notre Dame, and a bachelor of arts from Brigham Young University.

Inaugural Event Nov. 13, 2018

Ward and Joe Parkinson Tell the Story of Starting Micron

Tuesday, November 13, 218 marked the inaugural lecture of the College of Business and Economics’ new Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series. A standing room only crowd welcomed Micron cofounders Ward and Joe Parkinson to Skaggs Hall in the aptly named Micron Business and Economics building. The twin brothers took turns recounting the early days of founding one of Boise’s biggest success stories. Ward, the engineer of the duo, had never before spoken publicly about the company making it truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the students, faculty and community members in attendance. There were lots of laughs and lessons as the duo shared experiences. They talked of the ups and down — times they nearly lost the company and times when they worked with a team of Boise’s best to keep things going.

joe and ward parkinson with small group of students

For more than an hour, Ward and Joe Parkinson answered questions from a small group of students.

Many from Micron came to hear the lecture and Ward and Joe called out the names of several as stories of Micron’s early days involved them. COBE entrepreneurship faculty Jeff Sugheir and Timothy Dunne kicked off the question and answer period and several student questions followed. After the lecture in the Executive Education Classroom, a small group of MBA students was treated to the unique opportunity of having their questions answered by Ward and Joe.

Joe and Ward Parkinson and the first working DRAM chip

Joe and Ward Parkinson and the first working DRAM chip

Joe Parkinson, Tom Nicholas and Ward Parkinson at the Stagecoach Resraurant 1983

Joe Parkinson, Tom Nicholson (early investor) and Ward Parkinson at the Stagecoach Restaurant 1983

ground breaking for Micron building

Groundbreaking for the Micron building in 1984

aerial view of Micron Technology campus

Micron Technology campus 2012