Rueben McDaniel

Managing director

Llama Co.


Rueben McDaniel

Rueben McDaniel, 35, is a relative newcomer to northwest Arkansas.

McDaniel admits that someone asked, three years ago he would have predicted his career would take him to one of the country's handful of financial hubs: Chicago, New York, Atlanta or Los Angeles.

"Fayetteville didn't make the list," he laughs.

But that was before he met the executives of Llama Co. They convinced him that company executives shared a common philosophy in that while they do pursue international deals, they won't forget a hour the local community. Also, at Llama Co., he could enjoy the camaraderie of a small firm, yet the resources of a much larger company would be available.

Persuaded, McDaniel moved from Dallas, where he was an associate director for Bear Stearns to Fayetteville, where he's marketing director for Llama Co. Early in his career, McDaniel worked at Dean Witter Reynolds Inc., where his projects included managing Arkansas' first college-savings bond issue. A business associate from that work later introduced him to Llama Co. "He called me in November of 1995 and said he was in northwest Arkansas, McDaniel reca lls. "I though he was on vacation."

The associate, however, had joined Llama Co. and was suggesting McDaniel send a résumé.

Locally, McDaniel's interest in the improvement efforts Fayetteville's Dickson Street and the proposed town center.