University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service graduates Burt Hicks and Hilary Trudell are among the more than 60 individuals from across Arkansas selected for Leadership Arkansas Class XIII, a program operated by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce/Associated Industries of Arkansas.
Hicks, who currently serves as president and CEO of the Simmons First Investment Group, graduated from the Clinton School in 2013 and earned a concurrent juris doctor from the UA Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. SFIG is a retail broker-dealer and investment adviser, and he immediately oversaw a restructuring of the growing operation that resulted in record revenue and profit. In June, Hicks was named to the Arkansas Business 40 Under 40 Class of 2018.
“I am honored to have been selected for this year’s Leadership Arkansas class, and am especially appreciative of my company (Simmons Bank) for supporting me and the individuals that wrote letters of recommendation on my behalf,” Hicks said. “The curriculum, alumni network and list of current class members make this an incredible opportunity to develop further as a leader and gain a better understanding of all that makes Arkansas a great place to live and work.
“I’m most looking forward to being exposed to the most important sectors of the Arkansas economy and developing relationships with such a distinguished group of Arkansas’ future leaders.”
Trudell graduated from the Clinton School in 2012 and has served as the director of local programs and outreach for UACS Office of Community Engagement since 2015. Her duties include oversight of the school’s Practicum projects, which are in partnership with public agencies, community initiatives, academic ventures, and nonprofit organizations across Arkansas. She is the founder and executive artistic director of The Yarn, a local nonprofit dedicated to storytelling that showcases Arkansans and promotes the understanding of others.
“I’m thrilled to be a part of this year’s Leadership Arkansas class,” Trudell said. “I look forward to learning about the different industries prevalent around the state and getting to know the amazing members of my cohort. Not to mention, I get the opportunity to re-connect with my classmate Burt Hicks. It’s sure to be an incredible eight months.”
The mission of Leadership Arkansas is to challenge, inform, inspire and engage current and future business and civic leaders to enhance the economies of – and the communities within – the state of Arkansas. The programs is comprised of a nine-month class program consisting of nine multi-day sessions held in different locations throughout the state. The sessions feature Arkansas leaders who represent a wide geographic base and who have diverse backgrounds and vocations.
The Citizens Bank of Batesville is the underwriting sponsor for the 2018-19 Leadership Arkansas program. The Presenting Sponsor is ARcare. Statewide Program Sponsors include Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas, Farm Credit Services of Arkansas, Nucor Steel Arkansas, Southwest Power Pool, and Walmart.
Leadership Arkansas has educated and engaged over 600 alumni since its inception in 2005 and represents nearly every Arkansas county.