Arkansas Capital Corp.
As a natural extension of his university degrees, Rush Deacon began his career in what he describes as the less-exciting world of hourly billings – first with an international accounting firm in Houston and London, and then in local law practice. Later, he found his more passionate calling in executive leadership roles, first as president of Arkansas Development Finance Authority in Gov. Mike Huckabee’s administration.
In 2001, he joined Safe Foods Corporation in its early startup days as CSO and eventually, CEO, helping guide SFC from the always challenging development stage to becoming a profitable global leader in food safety technologies. In 2016, he resigned from his executive role at SFC (remaining on the board) to assume full-time CEO responsibilities at Arkansas Capital Corporation, the nonprofit, special-purpose finance organization. He recently led oversight by the SFC board in a successful sale of that company to a group controlled by The Blackstone Group of New York. On Jan. 1, he passed the CEO reins at ACC to Sam Walls III, but remains at ACC in a project finance role.
Life begins at 50, the saying goes, to which the incomparable Phyllis Diller once replied, “Maybe it’s true that life begins at 50. But everything else starts to wear out, fall out or spread out.” (The women and men included on the following pages, at least, will find that funny … not to mention, they actually know who Phyllis Diller is.)
Fifty is the new 40, or something like that, but in this Ponce de Leon age of youth worship, we at AMP thought it would be nice to recognize those business leaders in Arkansas who aren’t under 40 or in their 20s. Once one hits the milestone age of 50, life doesn’t stop, after all. For many, it speeds up. Nominated by readers, the leaders recognized in AMP’s inaugural Fifty Over 50 list haven’t slowed down — they have realized more success, achieved new goals and even launched entirely new chapters. And we salute them.
The vigor of youth is a beautiful and necessary thing. But so is the wisdom and discernment of age. Besides, like the saying goes, 50 is nothing more than the new 40, right?
The members of AMP’s inaugural Fifty Over 50 list were nominated by readers. They represent a broad spectrum of Arkansas business, industry and politics. They are former state legislators, business owners, CEOs
and more who represent industries ranging from farming and construction
to restaurants and retail.
Some of them started on an upward trajectory early in their careers and haven’t slowed down. Others began new chapters later in their journeys and achieved success — and made profound impacts on their communities — in new ways.
We’re proud to recognize these women and men-… experienced, seasoned Arkansas leaders whose collective journey is just beginning.
Click here to see the full list of 2022 AMP Fifty Over 50!