Positioning a company for growth requires strong Finance and Human Resources capabilities, yet one-third of middle market executives say it’s either “very challenging” or “extremely challenging” to find Finance, Accounting and HR professionals with the right experience and skills.
To capitalize on strong market demand, Growth Operators announces our latest executive appointments. These pros will expand the firm’s differentiated suite of business transformation services and build on its long-standing reputation for transforming finance, accounting and HR into functions that empower companies and private equity sponsors to achieve maximum growth and value.
Our New President: Molly Hiller
Molly Hiller most recently served as Growth Operators’ chief operating officer and chief financial officer. As President, Ms. Hiller will assume responsibility for all company operations and will report to the firm’s Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Rick Nordvold. She will also continue to serve as the firm’s CFO.
Hiller led the development of Growth Operators’ nextLevel® value creation tool, which is used by the firm’s consultants, (called Growth Pros), to instill best practices into clients’ finance, accounting, and HR processes. The firm will be launching a cloud-based, software version of the tool in 2024.
Additionally, Hiller spearheaded the creation of Growth Operators INDiGO™ training platform which facilitates training and career development for the firm’s 65 employees.
“Molly joined me at Growth Operators in 2012 as our first employee,” said Nordvold. “She set our standard for excellent client service from the very beginning, and, over the years, has led countless key initiatives that have driven us to where we are today. The platform of standards and tools she has developed differentiates us and facilitates consistency and excellence in our service to our clients. Molly is an exceptional leader and innovator who has evolved into a paragon of leadership and strategic thinking in our industry.”
“I was all in with Rick’s vision for Growth Operators from the beginning,” said Hiller. “I’m proud to say that our Growth Pros not only executed on our original vision, but they surfaced opportunities to serve clients that we didn’t even envision back then. We have 65 of the most talented and committed people I’ve ever worked with, and it’s an honor to lead them into this exciting new chapter for Growth Operators.”
New, Experienced Leadership
“Our team grew our business to record levels in 2023. It was the fourth year in a row that we grew by more than thirty percent,” said Nordvold. “This rapid growth naturally made our business more complex, so we bolstered our leadership ranks to add the depth and experience needed to continue this momentum and satisfy the increasing market demand for our services.”
Ron Hornbaker was hired as Chief Revenue officer last fall to lead the company’s sales, marketing, and business development efforts. A seasoned executive with an impressive record of leading and growing companies including Rockler Companies, Golf Town, Golf Galaxy, Retail Minds and Sleep Number, he was attracted to Growth Operators team approach, executive leadership, and growth potential. Ron will lead the continued growth and expansion of Growth Operators’ client base and new private equity partnerships.
“I’m energized by Growth Operators’ relentless commitment to delivering high quality results, and ability to position our clients for growth with finance, accounting and HR functions that drive scalability and create transformative value. There’s a reason our Growth Pros deliver such exceptional results. They arrive day one with their sleeves rolled up, ready to make a difference,” said Hornbaker. “Our best marketing tool is the exceptional service our team provides our clients. We are among the top-tier in client satisfaction in our industry, and our Growth Pros continue to earn us more and more opportunities to serve.”
Stephanie Laitala-Rupp, an industry veteran, was added to the Growth Operators executive team in 2023 to lead the firm’s client-facing efforts as its chief operating officer. Laitala-Rupp brings an impressive record and deep executive expertise as past president of Commonwealth Companies, founder and CEO of Owl Bookkeeping and CFO Services, and vice president and CFO of Strategic Advantage. Stephanie has emerged as a trusted partner for clients seeking battle-tested and scalable approaches tailored to their specific requirements. She has grown the Growth Pro team to over 65 professionals, spanning 20+ industries. Her skill lies in fitting the right team members to meet each client’s needs while propelling Growth Operators transformative services.
“For middle market and private equity-backed companies, navigating the complexities of pre-acquisition and post-acquisition integrations can be a daunting challenge. With an impressive track record and deep expertise, Growth Operators has helped our clients maximize their growth” said Laitala-Rupp.
Hiller added, “Ron and Stephanie are excellent leaders. They add proven go-to-market and client service leadership experience to our executive ranks and position us to expand to meet the ever-increasing demand of a growing market. “
Make Our Pros, Your Pros
Minneapolis-based Growth Operators has been recognized as one of America’s fastest growing private companies by Inc. 5000® for the third consecutive year. Our 65 employees with deep experience in over 20 industries have partnered with over 140 private equity sponsored clients. Our work spans the entire company life cycle from scale-up to pre-acquisition, post-acquisition integration, and pre-sale.
To put our expertise to work for your company, contact Growth Operators today.