Our People

Leaders in Agriculture and Food Processing

Richardson International is a team of over 3,500 employees in more than 100 locations across North America, the United Kingdom, and Europe. Our experienced leaders and strong network of specialized employees work together uphold our legacy of service excellence and our commitment to innovation. See our current job openings to join our growing team.

Executive Leadership

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Curt Vossen
Chief Executive Officer

Curt has dedicated his career to Canadian agriculture. For more than 25 years, Curt has led the growth of Richardson International. Before joining Richardson as President in 1995, Curt held various merchandising and operational management positions in the grain industry.

Curt is an active member of both the business and arts communities. He is a board member of the Business Council of Canada, the Rabobank North American Advisory Board, the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp., and past chairs of the Manitoba Business Council and the Premier’s Advisory Committee on Competitiveness. Curt is co-chair of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and the director of the Performing Arts Consortium. He is also a board member of the Misericordia Health Centre in Winnipeg and a trustee to the Richardson Foundation.

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Darwin Sobkow
President and Chief Operations Officer

As President and Chief Operations Officer of Richardson International, Darwin leads all operating business units in implementing strategic direction for the company. He demonstrates a steadfast commitment to fostering the growth and advancement of Richardson and its workforce within the competitive global marketplace. Darwin also assumes executive responsibility for corporate business functions, such as environment, health, and safety (EH&S), quality assurance, and food safety, in addition to overseeing Richardson’s office services and facilities management.

Darwin provides direction on Richardson’s integrated business divisions where required, including:

  • Grain and oilseed merchandising, handling, and crop inputs;
  • Oilseed processing, and durum and oat milling;
  • Malting;
  • Food and ingredients;
  • Engineering, transportation and logistics operations.

Prior to joining Richardson in 1999, Darwin held various operations positions in the grain industry. Currently, Darwin serves as a director on the Richardson International, Richardson UK, and Richardson US boards; he also serves on the Cascadia Port Management Corporation and Prince Rupert Grain boards.

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Craig Sheldon
Executive Vice-President, Finance & Chief Financial Officer

Craig is responsible for all the company’s financial functions, including accounting, treasury, risk management, internal audit, and strategy. He also manages and oversees all the company’s information technology activities. Craig has been with Richardson for over 25 years and has held several roles within the finance team, becoming CFO in January 2015.

Craig currently represents Richardson on the Richardson U.S. board and serves as secretary to the Richardson U.K. board. He also currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the United Way of Winnipeg, is past chair of the of the finance committee, and is a previous member of the executive committee of the United Way.

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Darrell Sobkow
Executive Vice-President, Processing, Food & Ingredients

Darrell is responsible for all operational aspects of Richardson’s oat milling, oilseed processing, and food and ingredients facilities, as well as food and ingredients sales, marketing, and product innovation. He also has responsibilities for engineering services and quality assurance for Richardson International as part of the senior executive team. Darrell joined the company as an area manager for Richardson Pioneer in 2000 and assumed various roles in grain handling, crop inputs, and logistics before moving into oilseed processing and packaging and oat milling.

Darrell is an active community member, participating in a number of volunteering, coaching, and fundraising initiatives for a variety of organizations. He was on the board of governors for Parkland College and has served as past member of the Western Grain Elevator Association.

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John Peterson
Executive Vice-President, Merchandising & Transportation

John is responsible for setting the strategic vision for the merchandising and transportation of bulk agricultural commodities and products through Richardson’s grain handling and processing facilities.

John, who holds a FCPA designation, joined Richardson in 1994 and spent the first 18 years of his career working in the finance department, holding a number of different positions and gaining greater exposure to Richardson’s grain handling, merchandising and crop input businesses. In 2012, John transitioned to the grain merchandising department where he was initially responsible for wheat merchandising and commodity hedging activities before assuming responsibility for all merchandising activities in 2020.

Throughout his career, John has also sat on a number corporate and community boards, volunteer coached many minor sports teams, and volunteered as a Big Brother at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Winnipeg.

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Tom Hamilton
Executive Vice-President, Agribusiness Operations

Tom Hamilton is responsible for Richardson Pioneer agribusiness operations in Canada, which includes grain handling and crop inputs marketing and retailing. Tom is also responsible for Richardson’s port terminal operations along with environment, health, and safety.

Over the course of his 30-year career in the grain industry, Tom held various operations and merchandising roles. He is currently serving as chair of the Terminal Elevators Association and director for Prince Rupert Grain and Cascadia. Tom has served as a director with CAAR, Mid-Sask Terminal, North West Terminal, Tri Lake Agri Limited, and Westmor Terminals Inc.

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Jean-Marc Ruest
Senior Vice-President, Corporate Affairs & General Counsel

Jean-Marc manages all legal affairs for Richardson International and its subsidiaries and oversees Richardson's relationships with governments and industry assocations. Called to the bars of Ontario and Manitoba, after starting his career in private practice, Jean-Marc joined Richardson International in 2002.

Jean-Marc is actively involved in Canadian agricultural policy matters as a member of the Western Grain Elevators Association Management Committee, Cereals Canada, the Canada Grains Council, and the Canadian Centre for Food Integrity. In 2021, Jean-Marc was recognized by Canadian Western Agribition as one of Canada's Top Fifty Most Influential People in Canadian Agriculture.

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Natalie Chan
Senior Vice-President, Human Resources

Natalie Chan is Senior Vice-President, Human Resources for Richardson International. Natalie joined Richardson in 2009 in the role of director of employee development, became the assistant vice-president of the human resources department in 2011 and was promoted to vice-president in 2014. In 2022, she was promoted to her current position Senior Vice-President, Human Resources. She oversees strategic direction for all HR initiatives, with a strong focus on ensuring optimal customer service to the department’s internal and external customers.

Prior to joining Richardson, Natalie’s HR career spanned fifteen years and included diverse experiences within numerous industries, such as financial services, call centres, and manufacturing and professional services. She was director, human resources for Richardson Partners Financial Limited (now Richardson Wealth), a JRSL affiliate, prior to joining Richardson International.

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Nancy Robertson
Senior Vice-President, Technology

Nancy oversees Richardson’s IT, Finance Transformation, Digital Ambition, and Corporate Communications initiatives. In this role, she leads the implementation of technological advances across Richardson to modernize ways of working, connect the company’s vertically integrated businesses, and set up for scalability and growth. Additionally, Nancy enhances communications and identifies synergies as Richardson transforms their digital infrastructure.

Nancy joined Richardson in 2003, spending the majority of her career in various finance roles before being promoted to vice-president, finance and digital ambition, where she led Richardson’s digital transformation strategy and evaluated how technology can provide innovative solutions to business challenges. With a passion for giving back to youth organizations, Nancy currently serves as chair of The Ride Inside on behalf of pediatric CancerCare Manitoba and is also a past member of the organizing committee. Additionally, Nancy spent many years volunteering her time as manager, treasurer and coach of various youth sports teams.