"Something that people always associate with me are sailboats (I'm currently part owner of 8 different boats). I've always loved boats and being on the water. In fact, I proposed to my wife on a sailboat on a beautiful clear night under the stars on Lake DeGray in June of 1985, on the first boat that I owned any part of (I owned 1/2 of the boat with my older brother), a 23-foot Spirit sailboat. Not long after we were married, my wife gave me this small metal sculpture of a sailboat. She says that I like sailing because it is a physics problem in motion — perfect for an engineer's hobby."

Joe Hilliard, PE, SECB

Director, Engineering

(501) 400-1066

Joe serves as Director of Engineering and Executive Vice President. His job duties include leading the engineering portion of the firm and managing industrial and general engineering projects and studies. Joe has extensive project management experience for numerous industrial clients including L’Oreal, Lockheed Martin, Welspun, Cameron Valve, Caterpillar, Scroll Technologies, Toyota, and Virco. 

A 1982 graduate of Hendrix College (physics) and a graduate of Columbia University (BS, Civil Engineering, 1983 and MS, Civil Engineering, 1984), Joe joined Cromwell in 1984 as a structural engineer in training. His expertise includes structural design of buildings for high wind and seismic loads including projects in San Diego, CA, Fairbanks, AK, and Miami, FL.

Joe is a member and past-president of the Structural Engineer’s Association of Arkansas and a member and past-president of the Arkansas Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Volunteer activities include numerous positions at St. James United Methodist Church and serving on the board of the Arkansas Chapter of the American Red Cross as well as serving as a former member of the board of the Public Education Foundation of Little Rock and Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County.

His wife, Nicki, is a professor of nuclear pharmacy at the UAMS College of Pharmacy. They have two children, Amy, a pharmacist, and Holly, an engineering graduate from the University of Arkansas. Joe’s hobbies include travel, boating, and biking. His “bucket list” includes visiting all 7 continents and all 50 states (he is down to 3 continents and 2 states he has not visited), extended sailing trips to several locations around the world (he isn’t doing so well on this one), and biking some of the great bike paths across the U.S.

What's one problem you're best at solving for your clients? 

Developing simple solutions to complex problems.

What is your favorite quote?

"All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." -Animal Farm; I love the irony in the quote and see how some people really think that way.  

What was your first concert?

Simon and Garfunkle Reunion in Central Park, 1981 

What was your first job?

Driving tractors on a farm.