Dynamic Business Executives with Purpose
Our Board of Directors is composed of a powerful group of dynamic business leaders, all appointed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. Gov. Abbott appointed the current Board in July 2022.
Texas Economic Development Corporation (TxEDC) connects a network of business leaders to drive economic development in the state, led by our Governor-appointed Board of Directors. This board serves the organization by spearheading global marketing and business collaboration initiatives and by serving as ambassadors for TxEDC in their own communities and beyond.
President and CEO
Vicki Hollub of Galveston has served on the Texas Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors since April 2019, and previously served as vice chair. She is President and CEO of Occidental Petroleum, an international oil and gas exploration and production company, and one of the largest U.S. oil and gas companies based on equity market capitalization. She joined Occidental’s Board of Directors in 2015, and has been with Occidental for over 40 years. She has extensive operations and leadership experience and, most recently, was president and COO, overseeing oil and gas, chemical and midstream operations. She is a director of the American Petroleum Institute and for chair of the U.S. – Columbia Business Council. Additionally, she is the former chair of the Bear Bryant Awards Campaign for the American Heart Association. Hollub received a Bachelor of Science in Mineral Engineering the University of Alabama. She was inducted into the University of Alabama College of Engineering 2016 class of Distinguished Engineering Fellows.
Arun Agarwal of Dallas, CEO of Nextt, and has business interests in textiles, cotton trading and real estate. He is chair of the India American CEO Council, president of the Dallas Parks & Recreation Board, and a board member of the US India Friendship Council, US India Chamber of Commerce DFW, and the Texas Tech Innovation HUB at Research Park. He is a volunteer and board member of Gift of Life and a volunteer for CHETNA and the Living Dreams Foundation. Agarwal received a Master’s in Business Administration from IMT, Ghaziabad, a Master’s in Computer Information Systems from Southern New Hampshire University, and a Master’s in International Business from Harvard University.
Adrian Canaday of Temple is President and CEO of the Temple Economic Development Corporation. He is a member and Treasurer of the Texas Economic Development Council and a member of the International Economic Development Council. Additionally, he is a member and former Chairman of Team Texas. He added the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Canaday received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematical Sciences and a Master of Science in Economic Development and Entrepreneurship from the University of Houston — Victoria and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma Economic Development Institute.
S. David Deanda Jr.
S. David Deanda Jr. of Mission, President of Lone Star National Bank. He is a board member of Doctors Hospital at Renaissance and president of the Mission Economic Development Corporation. He serves on the board of the McAllen Economic Development Corporation, Texas A&M University Foundation Board of Trustees, and Valley Alliance of Mentors for Opportunities and Scholarships (VAMOS). He is an active member of Palm Valley Church in Mission. Additionally, he served as Chairman of the Hidalgo County Regional Mobility Authority for over five years. Deanda received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&I University and studied at the Bank Operations Institute at East Texas State University and the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at Southern Methodist University.
Katie Farmer of Fort Worth is President and CEO of BNSF Railway, the largest Class I railroad in the U.S. She has been with BNSF for 30 years and previously served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, where she oversaw the entire Operations organization. She is a member of the Association of American Railroads Board of Directors, former President of the National Freight Transportation Association, and former Chair of the Intermodal Association of North America. She is a member of the Texas Christian University (TCU) Board of Trustees and the Jewel Charity Ball. She is also a sustaining member of the Junior League of Fort Worth and the National Charity League and a former member of the Cook Children’s Health Foundation Board of Trustees and the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra Executive Committee. Farmer received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing and a Master of Business Administration in Marketing from TCU.
L. Frederick “Rick” Francis
L. Frederick “Rick” Francis of El Paso, Executive Chairman for WestStar . He is a member of The Borderplex Alliance, Texas Business Leadership Council, Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council, Federal Reserve Board – Dallas, and the Community Bankers Council of the American Bankers Association. He is chair of the Medical Center of the Americas Board of Directors, board member of the Paso del Norte Community Foundation and El Paso Electric, president of the Pioneer Association of El Paso, and a member of the Hospitals of Providence Advisory Board. He is a former regent for the Texas Tech University System, having served from 2003-2019, former chairman of the Executive Committee for the Texas Hospital Trustees, and former board member of Western Refining, Inc. Additionally, he is former president of Area 5 (Rocky Mountain States) Boy Scouts of America, the Young Presidents Organization, the Yucca Council Boy Scouts of America, the Sunturians, and Crime Stoppers of El Paso. He has been active with the Business Advisory Council at the El Paso Community College, the Rotary Club of El Paso, the Better Business Bureau, and the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce. Francis received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from Texas Tech University and a graduate of the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at Southern Methodist University.
Mauricio Gutierrez of Houston is President and CEO of NRG Energy, Inc., and previously, he held the positions of Chief Operating Officer for five years and Executive Vice President of commercial operations overseeing all commodities trading. Previously, he held several senior positions at energy merchant Dynegy and consulting firm DTP in Mexico City. He is chairman of Retail Energy Advancement League (REAL), board member of the Business Roundtable, and former chairman of Electric Power Supply Association. Additionally, he is a board member of Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose and former board member of FIRST Global. Gutierrez received a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Universidad Panamericana, Master of Science in Mineral Economics from Colorado School of Mines, and a Master of Science in Petroleum Economics from the French Petroleum Institute.
George “Trey” Henderson III
George “Trey” Henderson, III of Lufkin is Manager and Owner of Henderson Community Ltd. Previously, he served as Vice President of the Lufkin Division of Overseas Hardwood Company, and as President and formerly Vice President of Angelina Hardwood Sales Company for over 30 years. He is a board member of the 12th Man Foundation. Additionally, he is a former board member of Governor Perry’s Task Force on Evacuation, Angelina College Board of Trustees, Texas Ethics Commission, and the Parks and Wildlife Commission Private Land Advisory Board. Henderson received a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Economics from Texas A&M University.
Peter J. Holt
Peter J. Holt of San Antonio is CEO and General Manager of HOLT CAT. He is a board member of the University of the Incarnate Word, SA Ready to Work Advisory Board, Early Matters Advisory Board, and the United Way of San Antonio, Chairman of the San Antonio Sours, and a former board member of the San Antonio Strategic Planning Committee. He serves on the Executive Committee of the United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County and the Executive Committee of the Texas Wildlife Association. Holt received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of the Incarnate Word.
Eduardo Margain of Austin is CEO and Founder of Pixiu Investments and Co-Founder and Alternate Governor of Austin FC. He previously served as Co-Founder of Brightstar Retail, Founder and CEO of Momentum Mobile Phones, and as the Corporate Financing Coordinator for Vitro. He is a member of the Young Presidents Organization and the Austin Council on Foreign Affairs and a board member of the 4ATX Foundation and the Greater Austin Crime Commission. Margain received a bachelor’s degree in Engineering and Information Systems from Tecnologico De Monterrey, Mexico.
President and CEO
Texas Economic Development Corporation
Robert Allen of Austin is President and CEO of Texas Economic Development Corporation (TxEDC). Previously, he served as Deputy Chief of Staff to Governor Greg Abbott, during which time he worked closely with the Director of the Economic Development and Tourism Division to further Governor Abbott's mission to position Texas as a global leader in economic development and as the best state for business innovation, job creation and continuing economic expansion. Prior to his role at the Office of the Governor, Allen served as Deputy Chief of Staff at the Office of the Attorney General, where he assisted with the administration of the more than 4,000-employee agency. A native Texan, Robert earned a bachelor's degree from The University of Texas at Austin.
Executive Director, Economic Development and Tourism
Office of Governor Greg Abbott
Adriana Cruz is Executive Director, Economic Development and Tourism, Office of Governor Greg Abbott. In October 2019, Adriana Cruz was appointed to lead the Governor’s Economic Development and Tourism Office. The Office markets Texas as one of the world’s premier business and travel destinations. As Executive Director, Cruz provides leadership to Business and Community Development, Texas Tourism, Texas Workforce Investment Council, Texas Music Office, and the Texas Film Commission. Cruz has more than 20 years of leadership experience in economic development, marketing, and international business. Prior to her appointment to lead the Texas Economic Development and Tourism Office, Cruz was President of the Greater San Marcos Partnership, the regional economic development organization established to encourage and nurture economic growth in San Marcos, and Hays and Caldwell counties. Previously, Cruz was the Vice President of Global Corporate Recruitment for the Austin Chamber of Commerce.