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Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series

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

Next speaker: fall of 2022

Recording of Jay Parkinson’s presentation from March 16, 2022, coming soon.

Jay Parkinson

On March 16, 2022, Idaho native Jay Parkinson shared the path his career took from private equity to founder and CEO to serial entrepreneur. Jay is the founder and CEO of Stonehill Environmental Partners, which provides infrastructure and environmental solutions to the upstream energy industry.  Founded in 2021, Stonehill’s financial partner is Golden Gate Capital, a $19 billion private equity fund based in San Francisco, California.

Prior to his current role, Jay was the founder and served as CEO of Hillstone Environmental Partners, which was sold in October of 2019 to NGL Energy Partners (NYSE: NGL) for approximately $600 million, representing a nearly 5x multiple of invested capital. Founded in 2015 in partnership with Golden Gate Capital, Hillstone provided infrastructure and environmental solutions to the energy sector, with assets and operations in the Permian Basin in Texas, Marcellus / Utica play in the Northeast, and the Bakken Shale play in North Dakota.

Prior to founding Hillstone, Jay was an Operating Executive with Golden Gate Capital focused on investment opportunities in the Energy Services, Infrastructure and Exploration and Production segments. He previously served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Nuverra Environmental Solutions, a company focused on providing full-cycle environmental, waste management, and recycling solutions to the upstream energy sector.

Prior to joining Nuverra, Jay was a Managing Director in the Energy Investment Banking group at Jefferies, where he focused on upstream unconventional oil and gas. While at Jefferies, he advised on over $75 billion of mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, and financing transactions in the energy sector.

Early in his career Jay served as a legislative assistant to United States Senator Dirk Kempthorne of Idaho.

Jay holds an MBA from Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business, an M.S. from the London School of Economics, and a B.A. from Georgetown University where he graduated magna cum laude.


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 asks questions about entrepreneurship and encourages 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.

Past Events:

Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series

Randy Hales, CEO, Next Level Apparel

Wednesday, November 10

Learn the what the levers are to lift any enterprise and the simple way to value you company and the competition.

Read more about Randy Hales

Using Four Simple Levers to Dramatically Increase Enterprise Value

The Making of a Super Computer

Amy Gile, Co-founder and CEO, Silverdraft Supercomputing

November 4, 2020

amy gile

Learn how Amy Gile went from in front of the camera to behind the scenes to provide the computing power entertainers, production artists and visual effects makers need.

Tales of the 2nd Largest Grocery Store Chain

Andy Scoggin, Founding member and Executive VP, Albertsons LLC

February 5, 2020

Learn how Albertsons LLC  grew from a regional chain with $4 billion in annual sales to the second-largest nationwide traditional grocery chain and the third-largest private company in the United States with more than $63 billion in annual sales.

Starting PetIQ - From Card Table to Millions

Cord Christensen, Founder and CEO, PetIQ

November 18, 2019

Learn how successful entrepreneur Cord Christensen disrupted the animal health and wellness industry and created a company with a billion dollars in sales. He gives excellent business and personal advice, too. Have a listen.

Starting ClickBank and Kount

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

February 6, 2019

From the leaders of ClickBank and Kount. Keynetics, the parent company of ClickBank and Kount, has grown to become Idaho’s largest privately held technology company.

Inaugural Event Nov. 13, 2018

Ward and Joe Parkinson Tell the Story of Starting Micron

Tuesday, November 13, 2018 marked the inaugural lecture of the College of Business and Economics’ new Entrepreneur Connect Speaker Series. A standing-room-only crowd welcomed Micron co-founders 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 lucky 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

ground breaking for Micron building

Groundbreaking for the Micron building in 1984

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

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

aerial view of Micron Technology campus

Micron Technology campus 2012