Senior Leadership Team
Chairman of the Board
Scot Hillman is the great-grandson of company founder Jefferson Davis Heiskell. He began working at the company during the summer prior to his senior year in high school in 1975. He went on to earn dual BA degrees in History and Communications at Stanford University before returning to the family business in 1980.
During his developmental tenure at JDHCo, Scot spent time riding with drivers and salesmen, worked nearly every job in the production process, and spent several years trading commodities for the business. In 1991, he became President of the Company when his father, Dale, retired from that position. In 2001, Scot was named Chief Executive Officer of J.D. Heiskell Holdings LLC. In 2007, he passed that title to Duane "Butch" Fischer and assumed his current title of Chairman of the Company's Board of Directors and Manager of the LLC. Scot's industry leadership contributions extend beyond the company. He served as President of the California Grain and Feed Association after six years on its Board of Directors, and was also two-term member of the Board of Directors (and served on the Executive Committee) of the American Feed Industry Association. He provided half a dozen years of service to the National Grain and Feed Association's Board of Directors, and sat on that board's Executive Committee as well.
Scot also serves on the Board of Directors of Sebastian Enterprises and as Chair of that firm's Executive Council, and as a member of the Community Advisory Board for the Tulare chapter of the Future Farmers of America. He is a past president of the Rotary Club of Tulare, a past Board member of Tulare Chamber of Commerce, spent a dozen years as a Public Utilities Commissioner for the City of Tulare, and has been the Spelling Master at the Tulare County Spelling Bee since the event began in 2000.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Ryan grew up in an agri-business atmosphere in Southwest Iowa and received a BS degree in Agriculture Business from Iowa State University. He started in the grain industry with A.E. Staley Manufacturing Company and was later procurement manager of Ferndale Grain, a division of PM Ag Products. He joined J.D. Heiskell when the company acquired PM Ag Products in 2000. Ryan is a past member of the board of directors for the National Grain and Feed Dealer's Association and a past member of the board of directors of the California Grain and Feed Association.
Executive VP and Chief Financial Officer
A 2008 graduate of Stanford University, Jefferson Hillman joined the company in January 2013 after a four-year stint as an investment analyst for the NYC-based private equity firm AMERRA Capital Management LLC. Named for the company’s founder, Jeff Hillman represents the 5th generation of family leadership in the business and currently serves as Chief Financial Officer, and previously as Corporate Treasurer, in Elkhorn, NE.
Executive VP and Chief Operating Officer
A native of Ashland, NE, and a University of Nebraska-Lincoln grad, Aaron began his professional career as a grain merchandiser with Frontier Cooperative in 1997. After moving through the management ranks there, he moved to Arizona Grain in 2006 as Vice President. He joined J.D. Heiskell in 2008 as General Manager of the Northwest Region. The company moved him to Texas in 2010 as General Manager of the SW Region. Aaron actively serves on industry-related organizations including NGFA, Texas Cattle Feeders Association, and Panhandle Grain and Feed
Executive VP and Chief Strategy Officer
Rick Bowen was raised on a dairy farm in Wellsboro, PA and earned his AAS degree in Agricultural Business from the State University of New York before receiving his B.A. degree from Spring Arbor College. Rick spent 10 years in the lending business with the Farm Credit System in the Baltimore District before entering the feed business. He joined Purina Mills Inc. in 1984 and held a number of roles including Credit Management, Sales, Sales Management, Pricing, and Region Vice President before assuming responsibilities as Executive Vice President, Operations and led the sale of the Purina Mills Inc. to Land O’ Lakes Feed in 2001. After the purchase by LOL, Rick worked to rationalize manufacturing assets and capture the synergies of the acquisition. In 2004 he assumed the role of National Sales Manager and held the role until assuming the role of General Manger of Golden State Feed & Grain on January 1, 2010. Golden State Feed & Grain was a joint venture between JD Heiskell & Co. and Land O’ Lakes Feed. JD Heiskell & Co. purchased Land O’ Lakes’ share of the JV in March 2013 and at that point Rick joined JD Heiskell & Co. as VP and General Manager of the California Region. In January of 2017, Rick was promoted to Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of JDHCo. Rick and his wife, Charlotte, reside in Greeley, Colorado and have a grown daughter, Allie.
President of Hawkeye Gold
Greg Hibner is President of J.D. Heiskell & Company’s Gold division in Ankeny, Iowa. Gold markets the distillers grains and ethanol from ethanol plants both domestically and internationally. Gold also manages Gold Star Feed and Grain, a feed mill joint venture with Kent Nutrition Group with four feed mills in the northeast. Greg has 25 years of commodity processing, trading, and ethanol experience, having spent the last 2 decades in Tate & Lyle’s commodity division (formerly A.E. Staley manufacturing of Decatur, Illinois). At Tate and Lyle, he gained experience in commodity risk management, corn origination, futures/options, product sales, logistics, container freight, and ethanol marketing. Prior to joining JDH/Gold, Greg was manager of Co-Product Sales and Trading at Tate & Lyle. Greg has a passion for agriculture, having been active in investing and trading farmland over the last 25 years. Greg also is a partner in a cattle feeding operation that feeds primarily corn co-products. Greg is a graduate of the 1994 Illinois Agricultural Leadership program and a 1987 graduate of the University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana with a degree in Business Administration. Over the last 20 years, Greg has been active with the U.S. Grains Council, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Growth Energy, and the NGFA. He and his wife, Kim, a school teacher, have 2 sons, Nathan and Eric.
Senior Vice President and Director of Corporate Risk
Charlie began his trading career in 1985 as a floor trader “local” at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. He has also worked at Cargill and ConAgra Foods where he was responsible for proprietary trading, over-the-counter derivatives, and risk management. Prior to joining JDHCO, Charlie was on the management team of an ethanol company with four plants and oversaw commodities risk management and commercial activities. Charlie has a BS degree from Illinois State University and an MBA from DePaul University.