The Missoula Business Drive is an annual fundraising campaign driven by local business leaders, in collaboration with the University of Montana Foundation. The purpose of the drive is to strengthen the ties between the Missoula business community and to encourage businesses to provide financial support for the UM Excellence Fund.
The Drive began more than 30 years ago when local business leaders recognized an opportunity to foster Missoula’s development through a relationship with the city’s largest engine of economic growth, the University. Today, these volunteers make up the University of Montana President's Excellence Fund Advisory Council. Each fall, volunteers contact associates in the Missoula business community and encourage support for UM priorities through the Excellence Fund.
Meet Business Drive Chair Jim Galipeau
Jim Galipeau graduated from the UM in 1984 with a BS in Accounting. He is now a partner at JCCS, a statewide accounting firm. He has volunteered for several years with the UM Business Drive, and keeps volunteering because he sees the importance of the University not only from an educational standpoint but as an economic driving force in Missoula. He believes the University does a really good job of preparing people to go out after graduation and make a living. By giving back to UM, he enjoys also giving back to the accounting profession.
Meet business partner Shannon Lukes
Shannon Lukes, ‘04, is a Commercial Loan Officer at First Security Bank with an enthusiasm for giving back to the University. “I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for the University of Montana,” says Lukes.
“I feel like I should be giving back in some way.”
Lukes is one of many Missoula business people who volunteer their time by being involved with the Missoula Business Drive.
Meet business partner Walt Muralt
Walt Muralt, '89, is the president/owner of Muralt's Travel Plaza, and an annual supporter of the Business Drive.
Walt understands the connection between Missoula's business community and UM, and says "The healthier and stronger the University is, the stronger the businesses in the community are and vice versa."
With the annual economic impact of the University of Montana on Missoula topping $250 million, participation in the UM Foundation Missoula Business Drive is a solid investment in the future.
To make an online gift today, please complete the secure donation form below.
To find out more about the Business Drive, contact Lauren Clark, Director of Development.