Justin Kirchhoff, Managing Director - Head of Private Equity
Mr. Kirchhoff is a Managing Director and Head of Private Equity for Summit Agricultural Group. In this capacity, he is primarily focused on overall investment execution and management related to various funds and portfolio investments in both the United States and Brazil. He currently serves on the board of FS Agrisolutions, a Brazilian biofuels and energy production company and previously served on the board of Iowa Premium, LLC, an Iowa-based beef processing company. In 2019, he was appointed by Governor Reynolds to the IPERS Investment Board, which is responsible for investment and oversight of Iowa state pension assets. Prior to joining Summit in 2012, he was an investment analyst with Aviva Investors North America. He grew up in Southwest Iowa and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in finance from Iowa State University, where he is a member of the College of Business Finance and Executive MBA Advisory Councils. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and is a member of the CFA Institute and the CFA Society of Iowa.
Kirk Beaubien, Managing Director - Head of U.S. Real Estate
As a Managing Director and Head of U.S. Real Estate, Kirk Beaubien is responsible for management of the day-to-day activities of Summit Ag Fund and its related entities. Prior to his current role, he served as an acquisition manager at Principal Real Estate Investors, where he was responsible for acquisitions/dispositions of commercial real estate properties in the state of California. He has also worked in the Cedar Rapids branch of U.S. Bank, serving as a portfolio manager in its commercial real estate group. He is a native of Denison, Iowa, and received bachelor’s degrees in both finance and real estate from the University of Northern Iowa, and a MBA with emphasis in finance from the University of Nebraska.
J.D. Schlieman joined Summit Agricultural Group in 2018 and now works as an Operating Partner. Schlieman’s responsibilities will initially include relationship management with potential portfolio companies. In addition, he will spend significant time evaluating potential investments and serving as a resource to executive teams within the fund, utilizing his deep industry expertise from both a financial and operational perspective. Schlieman’s experience includes serving as chief financial officer (CFO) at Heartland Pork and most recently as CFO, and eventually president, of Hawkeye Renewables.
Jon Probst joined Summit Agricultural Group in 2018 and now works as the Vice President. Prior to joining Summit, Probst was located in Dallas, Texas and gained experience evaluating potential private investment funds and sourcing, structuring and closing commercial real estate transactions. He earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting from Iowa State University and an MBA from the University of Texas, in addition to credentials as a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA).
Mr. Lauritson is a Director for Summit Agricultural Group and is primarily responsible for financial analysis and planning, in addition to reporting for various fund and portfolio investments both domestically and abroad. He has been closely involved from a financial analysis and structuring perspective in a number of portfolio investments, most recently FS Bioenergia. In addition to these responsibilities, he serves as the compliance officer for all aspects of fund operations. Prior to joining Summit in 2014, he was an auditor with Deloitte & Touche with a concentration in the financial services industry. He grew up in North Iowa and graduated with a master’s degree in accounting from Iowa State University. He holds a Certified Public Accountant License in Iowa (inactive) and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Iowa Society of Certified Public Accountants.
Jeff Cather is a Senior Associate for Summit Agricultural Group. Jeff is involved in all key areas of the investment cycle, including origination, due diligence, execution and portfolio management. Prior to joining Summit, he was an investment banking analyst at D.A. Davidson & Co. where he gained experience on a variety of M&A and private placement transactions. Jeff began his career with Koch Ag & Energy Solutions. He was raised on a farm and ranch in south central Kansas and earned his bachelor’s degrees in both agricultural economics and accounting from Kansas State University.
As an investment analyst, Izak Christensen focuses on diligence, financial modeling, and review of potential portfolio investments. Prior to joining Summit Agricultural Group in 2018, Izak completed various internships in commodity merchandising and renewable fuels. Izak was raised on a diversified farming operation near Riceville in Northeast Iowa before attending Iowa State University for bachelors’ degrees in agricultural business and agronomy. In addition to his undergraduate studies, Izak completed his MBA with an emphasis in finance from the Ivy College of Business at Iowa State University.
Lucas Paes joined Summit Agricultural Group in 2018 and works as the Director of Investment Development. Lucas is responsible for working with members of the agriculture industry to increase awareness of Summit’s investment initiatives and capital deployment programs. Prior to joining Summit, Lucas had several finance and credit assignments in South and North America. In his most recent role, Lucas managed credit and relationships for John Deere Financial working with some of John Deere’s largest dealers.
Lucas is a native of Brazil and earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from Iowa State University. He is currently pursuing his MBA from the University of Iowa.
Rafael Abud is currently responsible for project development and management of all ventures under the management of Summit Agricultural Group in Brazil, where he is primarily responsible for the operation of farmland holdings and renewable energy ventures. Rafael has 10 years of experience in the agribusiness and renewable energy industries. Prior to joining Summit, he founded Bio Ventures Brazil, where he led the development of projects in biodiesel production and processing technology, biomass-based electricity generation, production of energy crops and aviation biofuels.
Brian Mike works in business development for Summit Agricultural Group, with a particular focus on projects in Brazil including farmland and renewable energy investments. Brian started at Summit as an intern while attending Iowa State University. He has lived and travelled extensively throughout Brazil and is fluent in Portuguese. He grew up in northwest Wisconsin, and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Business and Economics from Iowa State University.