JV Smith Cos. names new president
Kristen Smith Eshaya has been named the new president of JV Smith Cos. She grew up alongside of JV Smith Cos., and her commitment to excellence, its teams and to the industry will help propel the company to new heights. Vic Smith will continue as CEO and chairman of the board.
Smith Eshaya graduated valedictorian at Yuma High School in 2003. She then went on to graduate with a bachelor's degree in economics from Colorado College and a master's degree in human relations from Northern Arizona University. Smith Eshaya lived in Texas and California, working in finance and development for the arts before moving back home to immerse herself in the family business. Along with her husband, Emil, Smith Eshaya resides in Yuma with their two children.
Following in her father's footsteps of service, Smith Eshaya has been involved with industry trade associations, including having served served on the Center for Growing Talent by PMA board of directors as well as the PMA Diversity and Inclusion Task Force. Smith Eshaya is currently in the Western Growers Future Volunteer Leaders Program. She currently serves on the Children's Museum of Yuma County board of directors with a passion and focus on creating an interactive museum for children that includes Yuma's agriculture story.
"I am honored and ready to lead our team," said Smith Eshaya. "For the past five years, I have worked alongside some of the most intelligent, focused, selfless and passionate people I have ever met. We share a commitment to the industry, our team, the community and to the earth. With the collaborative approach our leadership team takes, the possibilities are endless."
JV Smith Cos. began with the formation of Skyview Cooling Co. by John Smith, Smith Eshaya's grandfather. Together with his son, Vic, they established JV Farms in Yuma, AZ. As the companies grew, so did their family. Both Smith Eshaya and her brother, Kyle Smith, have been an integral part of the company's growth in recent years. Kyle leads Fresh Innovations, a JV Smith Cos. entity.
Vic shared his excitement to have his children leading the future of their family's business: "Karen and I are so proud of our children and their accomplishments. They have a proven passion for what my dad started decades ago and to what I have dedicated my work life to, as well. Kristen has completely engrossed herself in the companies and our company culture. With her lifelong love for the industry, her commitment to our JV family and her drive, I am confident she will not only take on the president role with focus and determination but will continue to grow our team, our companies, and the industry."
The JV Smith Cos. family includes thousands of people across California, Arizona, Colorado and Mexico. Their companies include:
- Skyview Cooling Co., Yuma, AZ 1970
- Southern Colorado Farms; Center, CO 1977
- JV Farms; Yuma, AZ, and Bard, CA 1988
- Skyline Potato Company; Center, CO 1991
- El Toro Agricola; Ciudad Morelos, Mexico 1992
- Fresh Innovations, Yuma, AZ 2001
- JV Farms Organic;, Soledad, CA 2012
- Triangle Farms; Salinas, CA 2018