David Fluker, President/Owner
Our fearless leader is a entrepreneur and second-generation cricket farmer, practically born and raised in this unique business. While most kids were away at camp, David spent his childhood summers feeding, watering, counting, and delivering crickets. It's safe to say his connection to crickets and reptiles has been a lifelong endeavor. "I absolutely love my job and my team. We have accomplished many exciting things together growing this little cricket farm from a small seasonal fish bait company to the internationally recognized reptile brand it is today," shared David.
As graduate of LSU, David is proud of the strategic partnership Fluker's has cultivated with the state’s flagship university. "We've funded many research projects over the years and continue to rely heavily on LSU’s deep resources to develop and produce our insects and quality family of products. Now more than ever, I am excited about the continued growth our future holds," he added. (With David at the helm, we all are too!)
Diane Noland - Secretary/Treasurer, Owner
Diane is the co-owner of Fluker Farms and has worked with the company since childhood. Her responsibilities include mananging daily financials, planning company events, maintaining the work environment, cooking for employees, and filling in for essential employees. She also works closely with our sister company, Roux Brands. Diane’s favorite thing about her job is entertaining employees as a way to thank them for all of their hard work. When asked what reptiles/amphibian/insect she would be if she had the chance, Diane replied, “A butterfly because I love to be around flowers”. Outside of the office, Diane loves to work in her flower beds and yard because it gives her a sense of peace. Diane is also actively involved in her church's kitchen duty and VBS. If she could describe herself in three words, they would be "peacemaker, loyal, and selfless." (We agree, Diane always thinks of others before herself!)
The accomplishment Diane is most proud of is, of course, her family. Her career has also created great value in her life because she finds satisfaction in working hard and is passionate about showing employees that everybody is important to our company. Diane is an asset to our team because she is very friendly, loves people, is patient, and is always willing to problem solve. When asked how she deals with adversity Diane shared, “I am not afraid to wear many hats, and I often step in when another employee is absent. I enjoy it, no matter what the job! And I have never been afraid to do manual labor. It also helps that I keep an open mind and don't think any task is beneath me. We are all one team.”
Sam Furby - Vice President, Director of Sales and Marketing
Sam has worked at Fluker’s for more than 20 years. As Executive VP, he wears many hats. His main responsibility is sales, but he also plays a big part in marketing, new product development, and general management. One of Sam's favorite things about his job is he doesn't do the same thing over and over every day; there is always a new challenge or opportunity. "Because of those challenges, I've learned that you receive in proportion to what you give, which is true in most aspects of life as well. There’s nothing more satisfying than being involved in the evolution of a new product; from conception through placement, and then seeing the result of your efforts on store shelves across the entire country," shared Sam. When asked how he deals with advsersity, Sam said most would say he throws tantrums but he likes to call it "lively discussion of the adverse situation." (Funny guy!)
When asked who the biggest influence on his career has been, Sam explained, "Ironically, it would be David Fluker. He taught me how to argue and deflect blame. Even with our constant battling of wills, I am extremely proud of how far we've come as a company over the past 20 years in terms of both growth and our contributions to the pet industry. I know it's a cliche, but the company has become an extension of my family, with all the associated joy, tragedy, disagreements, and successes." Sam's wife, Suzanne, has been the biggest supporter of his career and everyday life. "I am intuitive, playful, sarcastic, and loyal; she’s the calming influence on my somewhat anxious personality," added Sam. Because Suzanne is an elected official their town, the two are involved in many community activities. Outside of work, Sam enjoys cooking, music, college football, ballroom dancing, golf, fishing, and is even an active participant in the pet industry in his personal life. "Chameleons have always interested me, and I have felt a personal connection with them. Their adaptive natures resonates with my salesman personality!" (What color are you today, Sam?!)
Vance Noland, Business Development
Vance officially joined the family business in 2017 as Director of Business Development. In addition to his lifelong connection to the farm, he brings a finance degree and several years of experience in management and operations to our team. The future of Fluker Farms looks bright as the third generation starts to bring their talents to the table!
"Being a third-generation Fluker, my childhood summers consisted of watching movies in the conference room and gathering pecans from the trees lining the farm driveway. I remember spending holidays with MiMi and Paw Paw Cricket and taking baby pictures with cricket boxes," shared Vance. "For as far back as I can remember, the farm has been a major part of my life. I am grateful for the many diverse experiences I've had and lessons I've learned."
Taylor Vernon, Chief Financial Officer
As our CFO since 2012, Taylor is director of accounting and oversees the "Human Being" department at the farm. His favorite part of his job is knowing that Fluker’s is a family business and the trust that comes with that. When asked which reptile he would be and why, Taylor answered, “Turtles because my wife loves turtles!" Outside of work, Taylor is passionate about reading and studying/applying theology. He also loves spending time in the Rocky Mountains with his family. Connecting work to life, Taylor believes that “we do not always have the freedom to choose the roles we play at work, but we can choose how we are going to play the roles we have found ourselves in at work”.
Waco Hitt, Director of Dry Products
Waco Hitt, another LSU alumnus, has been with Fluker’s for 22 years. As director of our dry products division, he is responsible for new product development, purchasing, and quality assurance. (Although he says babysitting David and Sam takes up most of his time!).
Waco’s favorite part of working at Fluker’s is developing new products for the industry. He feels a sense of accomplishment when he sees a product that he developed on the shelves of pet stores. He also loves working with a great team that makes it fun. When asked what reptile he would be if he had the chance, Waco answered, “A Liger. It’s not a reptile, but that’s pretty much my favorite animal." I guess we’ll never know the answer to the question!
Waco loves to kayak fish, hunt, and play golf. When they can find the time, he and his wife also like to make/restore vintage furniture. His family is what drives him to work hard and admits that his wife is the biggest influence in his life through her support and encouragement. Waco also credits his strong work ethic to his father, who pushed him to work hard every day. Of all of his accomplishments, he is most proud of staying married for more than twenty years and of his four awesome kids! The most important lesson Waco has learned in the working world is that no matter where you work, you must take ownership of your job. He also adds that respecting others goes a long way.
Troy Lee, Production Manager (Live Insects Division)
Troy Lee, an alumnus of Glen Oaks High School in Baton Rouge, currently serves as production manager for our Live Insects Division. His responsibilities include overseeing daily farm operations, breeding, and sales of our entire line of live feeder insects. For Troy, the most important part of his job is making sure employees are safe and that the products are of high quality. When asked what reptile he would be if he had the chance and why, Troy answered, “A bearded dragon because they look cool!"
Troy is passionate about animals and active in his community. His family is the biggest influence in his life and career. If he could describe himself in three words, he would say "trustworthy, honest, and dedicated because that’s the only way he knows how to be." Troy believes that the most important life lesson he has learned from the working world is to give it your all and it will pay off in the long run.