Skip Navigation LinksValero > Our Business > Executive Team
Executive Team 
In This Section
Skip navigation links
Refining
Commitment to Excellence
Awards & Honors
Company History
Executive Team
Board of Directors
Voices for Energy
Daily Corn Bids
Excellence
Executive Leadership
Valero’s top executive officers are, left to right, Jay Browning, Executive Vice President and General Counsel; Mike Ciskowski, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Joe Gorder, CEO and President; Mike Crownover, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer; and Lane Riggs, Executive Vice President-Refining Operations and Engineering.
 
All titles below reflect overall Corporate positions. 
Joe Gorder

CEO and President

Joe Gorder became CEO and President on May 1, 2014. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer, responsible for refining operations and commercial operations in marketing, supply and transportation.

He also has served as Chief Commercial Officer and President of Valero Europe. He oversaw all commercial trading and related activity for the company, including Crude and Feedstock Supply and Trading, Products Supply and Trading, Wholesale Marketing, Logistics Operations, Commercial Business Development, Transportation and Specialty Products Marketing. In addition, he was responsible for all business activity and operations of Valero’s assets in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Gorder served as Valero’s Executive Vice President-Marketing and Supply, following tenure as Senior Vice President for Corporate Development and Strategic Planning.
 
Before joining Valero, he held the positions of Vice President of Business Development for Ultramar Diamond Shamrock, and Director of Commercial/Industrial Sales, Assistant Treasurer and Director of Information Systems for Diamond Shamrock.

Gorder earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and a master’s degree in business administration from Our Lady of the Lake University.
Jay Browning

Executive Vice President and General Counsel

Jay Browning is Executive Vice President and General Counsel, with responsibility for the company's legal department and corporate governance.

Since he joined Valero in 1993, Browning has provided legal counsel on the company’s numerous transactions, assured compliance with securities laws and provided legal counsel to the board of directors and principal officers.

His prior experience includes positions as an Associate in the Corporate & Securities division of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld LLP in San Antonio, and as an attorney in the Corporate/Transactional division of Baker & Botts LLP in Austin, Texas.

Browning earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in finance, a Master of Business Administration degree and a Juris Doctorate from Texas Tech University.

Mike Ciskowski

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Mike Ciskowski serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer with responsibility for Treasury, Finance, Accounting, Internal Audit, Trading Controls, Insurance and Information Services.

During his 23 years with the company, Ciskowski has held many different positions in the financial planning and the business and corporate development areas of the company, including Investor Relations Director, Financial Planning Director and Manager of Financial Planning.

While leading the Corporate Development Department, Ciskowski oversaw a string of very successful acquisitions including the purchases of the Benicia Refinery, Corpus Christi East Refinery, Huntway Refining Co., UDS and the St. Charles Refinery. He has helped Valero earn a reputation for making very successful acquisitions, conducting smooth transitions and closing those transactions in record time.

Prior to joining Valero, he worked for Williams Exploration Co. and Getty Oil Co. in finance and planning. He earned a Bachelor of Business Administration and Master of Business Administration degrees in finance from Central State University in Oklahoma.

Mike Crownover
Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer

Mike Crownover is Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, with oversight of Human Resources, Benefits, Training and Development, Facility and Administrative Services, Global Security, and Advertising and Communications.
 
Since joining the company in 1997, he has been an integral part of Valero's leadership team. He served as Corporate Compensation Manager, Corporate Human Resources Manager, Corporate Human Resources Director, and Executive Director-Employee Relations and Retail HR. He became Senior Vice President-Human Resources in May 2002.
 
Prior to joining Valero, Crownover served as Human Resources Manager for Halliburton Energy Services. Crownover earned his bachelor's degree in accounting from the University of Texas at Arlington.
Lane Riggs
Executive Vice President-Refining Operations and Engineering
 
Lane Riggs serves as Executive Vice President-Refining Operations and Engineering, overseeing operations of all Valero refineries. He has been with the company since 1989 and has served in many leadership positions.
 
He began his career at Valero as a Process Engineer at the McKee Refinery and subsequently held management positions including General Manager-Process Engineering, Director-Supply & Optimization, Vice President-Refinery Planning & Economics, and Senior Vice President-Crude, Feedstock Supply & Trading before becoming Senior Vice President-Refining Operations. 
 
Riggs earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Oklahoma and his Master of Business Administration degree with an emphasis in Finance and Economics from West Texas A&M University.
 
 
Gary Arthur Jr.

Senior Vice President-Wholesale Marketing

Gary Arthur serves as Senior Vice President-Wholesale Marketing. He has led numerous initiatives to improve the company’s marketing and transportation business activities since joining Valero in 2000 as Vice President-Marketing, Supply & Transportation.

Prior to joining Valero, Arthur worked for Colonial Group as Vice President of Supply and Distribution. He has extensive commercial and managerial experience, working nearly 20 years for Ashland Oil, where he served in a variety of increasingly responsible management positions in Marketing, Supply, Trading, Distribution and Business Operations.

Actively involved in community activities, Arthur has served on the Board of Directors of St. Peter-St. Joseph Children’s Home and currently serves on the Board and Executive Committee of the San Antonio Sports Foundation. He is active in United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County campaign leadership and serves on the United Way Marketing Advisory Committee.

Arthur holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Kentucky and a master’s degree in business administration from Morehead State University. He and his wife, Sheila, live in San Antonio and have two children.

Jim Gillingham
Senior Vice President-Petrochemicals, NGLs and Strategic Sourcing

Jim Gillingham is Senior Vice President-Petrochemicals, NGLs and Strategic Sourcing. Prior to his current position, Gillingham was Senior Vice President-Specialty Products, and Senior Vice President-Alternative Energy and Project Development, with responsibility in the latter position over alternative energy and biofuels project development, including Valero Renewable Fuels Company LLC, or Valero Renewables.

Gillingham is an experienced manager of petroleum refinery operations, technology, maintenance and engineering. He has been with the company since 1985 and has served in many key roles.
 
He began his career at Valero as a Refinery Superintendent at the Three Rivers Refinery and subsequently held various positions including General Manager-Process Engineering, Director of Petrochemicals Development, Plant Manager positions at the Denver, McKee and Port Arthur refineries, and Vice President of Regional Refinery Operations. Gillingham has instrumental in the acquisition of 10 ethanol plants and the development of alternative energy initiatives.

Gillingham earned both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from Rice University in Houston. He and his wife, Carol, live in San Antonio and have three children.
 
Gary Simmons
Senior Vice President-Supply, International Operations and Systems Optimization
 
Gary Simmons is Senior Vice President-Supply, International Operations and Systems Optimization, and previously served as Vice President-Crude, Feedstock, Supply and Trading.
 
Simmons joined Valero in 1987 and began his career as a Process Engineer at the Ardmore refinery and held many leadership positions including Executive Director-Regional Development, Vice President and General Manager of the Ardmore refinery, Vice President and General Manager of the St. Charles refinery, and Vice President-Planning and Economics, before being promoted to his current position. Simmons directs the supply, trading and hedging activities for supply of crude oil to all Valero refineries, and oversees international operations and refinery systems optimization.
 
Simmons has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Oklahoma and a Master of Business Administration degree from University of Texas at San Antonio.
 
Donna Titzman

Senior Vice President and Treasurer

Donna Titzman serves as Senior Vice President and Treasurer and has overall responsibility for the company’s banking, cash management, customer credit and investment management areas.

Titzman joined Valero in 1986 as an accountant in the Natural Gas Liquids area. In 1989, she transferred to the Finance Department and held several positions before being appointed Vice President and Treasurer in 1999.

She additionally was appointed Director, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Valero Energy Partners LP, a master limited partnership, in September 2013.

She is a Certified Public Accountant and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting from the University of Texas at Austin.

Ken Applegate
Vice President-Transportation
 
Ken Applegate serves as Vice President-Transportation, with responsibility for the company's marine and rail transportation of raw materials and finished products.
 
He joined Valero in 2000, serving as Vice President of Gasoline Trading, and subsequently has held a number of senior positions, including Vice President-Marketing, overseeing marketing activities for wholesale, retail, asphalt, lubricants and petrochemicals. He also has served as Vice President of Wholesale Marketing, responsible for branded distributor sales, unbranded wholesale and commercial end-user sales activities.
 
Prior to joining Valero, Applegate worked for Fina Oil and Chemical Company and TOTAL for 20 years, serving in a variety of management positions in Supply, Trading and Transportation.
 
He holds a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the University of Oklahoma.
Eric Fisher
Vice President-Europe
 
Eric Fisher serves as Vice President-Europe, responsible for all business activity and operations of Valero’s assets in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Previously, he served as Vice President-Investor and Corporate Communications, in which he managed the Investor Relations, Corporate Communications, Community Relations, Advertising and Corporate Sponsorship departments.

He also served as Vice President of Investor Relations, where he developed strong communications programs for Valero investors. These programs were particularly beneficial during Valero's aggressive growth period because they helped investors understand the complexities of deals like Valero's $8 billion purchase of Premcor Inc.

Fisher began his career with Valero in 1997, when he joined Valero’s Corporate Law Department. In 1999, he moved to Investor Relations, and in 2004 was named Vice President of Investor Relations.

Prior to joining Valero, Fisher worked for the law firm of Fulbright & Jaworski. Earlier in his career, he worked as an operations accountant for Exxon Corp. Fisher earned his undergraduate degree in economics from Texas A&M University and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Texas School of Law.
Rich Lashway
Vice President-Logistics Operations
 
Rich Lashway is Vice President-Logistics Operations, and also serves as Director, President and Chief Operating Officer of the general partner of Valero Energy Partners LP, a midstream master limited partnership.
 
He has 16 years of service with Valero, including with predecessor Ultramar Diamond Shamrock (UDS). In his current position with Valero, he is responsible for developing and managing logistics projects.
 
Throughout his career with Valero and UDS, Lashway has held critical leadership positions in the commercial and corporate development groups, and has been an integral part of key transportation and logistics projects, including the initial public offering of Shamrock Logistics L.P., the predecessor to NuStar, and its acquisition of Kaneb Pipe Line Partners L.P.

He was appointed to his positions with the general partner of Valero Energy Partners LP in September 2013.
Martin Parrish
Vice President-Alternative Fuels
 
Martin Parrish is Vice President-Alternative Fuels, overseeing Valero's 11 ethanol plants and the development of alternative energy investments. He has served in a number of key refining, supply and trading positions with Valero.
 
Parrish joined the company in 2000 as a Capital Projects Director at Valero’s headquarters in San Antonio and has subsequently served in a number of key operations positions. Those have included Operations Director at the Bill Greehey Refineries in Corpus Christi, Texas, Vice President and General Manager of the Three Rivers Refinery, Vice President and General Manager of the Aruba Refinery, Vice President-Regional Refinery Operations, and Vice President-Crude, Feedstock Supply & Trading, before assuming his current position.
 
Prior to joining Valero, Parrish worked at ARCO and CITGO. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Purdue University.
 
Chris Quinn
Vice President-Corporate Development
 
Chris Quinn serves as Vice President-Corporate Development, with responsibility for the company's corporate development functions, including mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and other strategic transactions.
 
Quinn joined Valero in 1997 in the Corporate Development group, and was appointed Vice President-Corporate Development in 2002. In his time with Valero, he has worked on all of the company's major transactions, including mergers with Ultramar Diamond Shamrock and Premcor, and refinery sales and divestitures. He also worked on the spinoff of CST Brands Inc., and the formation of Valero Energy Partners LP.
 
Prior to joining Valero, Quinn worked for TOTAL Petroleum in Denver, in treasury and corporate development. He holds a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Colorado.
Mark Schmeltekopf
Vice President and Controller

Mark Schmeltekopf serves as Vice President and Controller, with responsibility for the company’s accounting, budgeting, forecasting and profit-planning procedures, as well as financial statements and reporting, and corporate tax functions.

Schmeltekopf joined Valero in 2003 as Executive Director of External Reporting. Soon thereafter, Mark was promoted to Assistant Controller, and ultimately, Senior Vice President of Accounting, in 2012.

Schmeltekopf graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas State University in 1987.
Cheryl Thomas

Vice President and Chief Information Officer

Cheryl Thomas serves as Vice President and Chief Information Officer, with responsibility for the company’s information services network and related technology.

Thomas has served Valero and its predecessors since 1984. She previously served as Senior Vice President-Information Services for Valero, managing the company’s Information Systems Development, Support and Infrastructure teams. Prior to that role, Thomas served as Vice President of Retail Operations Support and Vice President of Retail Information Systems. She has played a key role in restructuring Valero’s Information Services Department and integrating recently acquired assets into Valero’s complex systems.

Thomas earned a business administration degree in quantitative analysis from California State University-Fresno in 1983, graduating Magna Cum Laude.