Dr. Patrick Gruber
Board Member, Chief Executive Officer
Patrick R. Gruber has served as Chief Executive Officer and a director of the Company since 2007. Prior to joining the Company, from 2005 to 2007, Mr. Gruber was President and Chief Executive Officer of Outlast Technologies, Inc. (“Outlast Technologies”), a technology and marketing company primarily serving the textile industry, where he was responsible for all aspects of Outlast Technologies’ business. Previously, Mr. Gruber co-founded NatureWorks LLC (formerly Cargill Dow, LLC) (“NatureWorks”) and served as Vice President, Technology and Operations, and Chief Technology Officer from 1997 to 2005, where he was responsible for all aspects of the business, including project, application and process technology development. From 2007 to May 2012, Mr. Gruber served on the board of directors of Segetis, Inc. From 2007 to January 2012, Mr. Gruber served on the board of directors of Green Harvest Technologies, LLC and from 2007 to 2008, he served on the board of directors of Outlast Technologies. In 2011, Mr. Gruber was awarded the University of Minnesota Outstanding Achievement Award. In 2008, Mr. Gruber was awarded the first ever George Washington Carver Award, recognizing significant contributions by individuals in the field of industrial biotechnology and its application in biological engineering, environmental science, biorefining and bio based products.
Dr. Chris Ryan
President, Chief Operating Officer
Christopher M. Ryan has served as President and Chief Operating Officer of the Company since June 2011 and as Chief Technology Officer of the Company since September 2012, having previously served the Company as its Executive Vice President, Business Development since June 2009. Prior to joining the Company, he co-founded NatureWorks in 1997. Mr. Ryan served as Chief Operating Officer for NatureWorks from 2008 to 2009 and Chief Technology Officer for NatureWorks from 2005 to 2008, where he was involved in the development and commercialization of that company’s new bio based polymer from lab-scale production in 1992 through the completion of a $300 million world-scale production facility. Prior to 1992, Mr. Ryan served for four years in Corporate R&D for HB Fuller Company, a specialty chemical company. He has over 22 years of experience in strategic leadership, business development and research and product development in bio based materials.
Chief Financial Officer
L. Lynn Smull has served as Chief Financial Officer of Gevo since December 2019. Prior to joining Gevo, Mr. Smull served from 2018 to 2019 as Chief Financial Officer of One Energy Enterprises, a distributed-generation wind energy developer and owner using utility-scale turbines. From 2016 to 2018 he served as President of WElink Energy US, LLC, an investor and provider of renewable energy and low-carbon housing solutions. Prior to WElink, Mr. Smull served as Head of Foresight Group US, LLC, an independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager from 2015 to 2016. Mr. Smull provided advisory services to private equity firms on large power and infrastructure investments and transactions from 2013 to 2015. Mr. Smull has 30 years of experience in capital raising, investing, lending, and M&A including while working for firms such as Bechtel, Salomon Brothers, Bank of America, Calpine, and Table Rock Capital.
Chief Commercial Officer
Timothy J. Cesarek has served as Chief Commercial Officer of the Company since March 2018. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Cesarek was the Senior Vice President, Global Business Development, of Enerkem, a waste to chemicals and fuels company, where he was responsible for leading the commercial and project development efforts from 2012 to 2018. From 2009 to 2012, Mr. Cesarek served as Managing Director in the Organic Growth Group and Organic Recycling business for Waste Management, Inc., where he was responsible for directly investing in opportunities for Waste Management to optimize the value of the waste it managed, particularly through waste conversion into biofuels, renewable chemicals, energy and lawn and garden products. Prior to Waste Management, Mr. Cesarek was the President of Koch Genesis Company LLC, an investment arm of Koch Industries, Inc., from 2001 to 2009, specializing in commercial ventures, licensing and early stage investments in the petrochemicals, forest products, polymers, resins and consumer products industries. Mr. Cesarek has over 30 years of business development and private equity experience with over 15 of those years in renewable fuels, chemicals and energy.
Geoffrey T. Williams, Jr.
Vice President – General Counsel & Secretary
Geoffrey T. Williams, Jr. has served as General Counsel & Secretary of the Company since January 2016 and as Vice-President – General Counsel & Secretary of the Company since October 2020. Prior to joining the Company, he served as Chief Legal Officer and Secretary at Alacer Gold Corp., a publicly-traded gold mining company, from December 2011 until February 2014. From May 2009 through November 2011, he served as the Assistant General Counsel and Secretary of Intrepid Potash, Inc., a publicly-traded mining company. Prior to Intrepid Potash, Mr. Williams practiced corporate law for several large law firms where his practice focused on public and private mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, securities offerings and regulation and corporate governance matters.
Carolyn M. Romero
Vice President – Controller, Principal Accounting Officer
Carolyn M. Romero has served as Vice President – Controller and Principal Accounting Officer since July 2019. Prior to joining the Company, she has guided several high growth companies through their public filing process as well as the acquisition and sale of companies including Webroot, Inc., Woodward, Inc., JBS USA and Mountain States Rosen. Over the past 40 years, Ms. Romero has served as Chief Financial Officer, Audit Committee Chair, Audit and Litigation Partner and Corporate Controller.
Vice President - Investor Relations & Communications
Heather Manuel served as Director of Corporate Communications since February 2019 and has served as Vice President - Investor Relations & Communications since October 2020. Before joining the Company, she served, from February 2010-2019, as the Director of Communications & Marketing at Outlast Technologies, Inc., a technology and marketing company primarily serving the textile industry. From September 2002 through February 2010 she was responsible for business development, shareholder relations and marketing at Outlast. Mrs. Manuel also currently serves as the Chair of Communications of the Advanced Biofuel Association in Washington, DC.