As senior director of development for Water Street Solutions, Dean Heffta has spent his career leading and educating farmers and ag professionals. After serving as an agronomist in an Iowa cooperative, he joined Water Street in 2006 as a sales representative and was quickly promoted up the leadership ranks. He oversees the professional development of the firm’s commodity market advisory team, managing hundreds of client relationships, and advising and mentoring market strategists, associates and agriculture finance specialists. He also serves as the firm’s WIN director.
Having previously led its sales specialist client service team and served as internal professional development trainer, Heffta introduced the Forte communications tool to the company and developed a three-day event that resulted in stronger relationships between Water Street and its clients. He has developed numerous employee training programs, as well as a new commodity market newsletter, served on the Scholarship Selection Committee, and helped facilitate internship opportunities for college students.
The author of a monthly column for Corn and Soybean Digest, Heffta routinely speaks to farmers and other industry professionals at seminars and other events. From 2011 to 2012, he served on an advisory committee to the national board of the Agriculture Future of America, and he was instrumental in bringing a Toastmasters chapter to Water Street Solutions.
An active volunteer at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Washington, Heffta is co-chair of its Stewardship Committee. He also leads worship as drummer in the praise band.
Heffta has served in a variety of volunteer projects in the Peoria area, including church clean-up days, a building project for Habitat for Humanity, and the planting of a community garden at South Side Mission. He holds bachelor’s degrees in agronomy and agricultural business from the University of Minnesota and an MBA degree from Drake University. Outside of work and volunteering, Dean enjoys spending time with his wife, Sarah, and son, Carter. iBi