Board of Directors
Mario Rodriguez is the President and founding member of Compendium Strategies. He has been an entrepreneur and community leader throughout his career. In 1986, he founded Jonathan Grey & Associates, and built it into a leading Latino-owned consulting and ad specialty company. His clients include Fortune 500 companies, sports agencies, political firms, government agencies, and non-profit organizations. In 2006, he created his consulting business where he specializes in advising his clients on a wide range of political, business, and social issues.
Mr. Rodriguez serves in many social organizations. He served as board Director for the Tiger Woods Learning Center and is the Chairman of the Hispanic 100. He served on the President?s Advisory Council of Concordia University, as well as the New Majority of Orange County. He formerly served as a member of President George W. Bush?s Commission to Strengthen Social Security, Chairman of the California Athletic Commission, President of the Hispanic Business Roundtable, Chairman of the Latino Coalition Foundation, Board of Directors of the Efren Herrera Foundation, and as member of the Board of Directors of the Boys & Girls Club in the South County area.
Mr. Rodriguez has received multiple awards including the Hispanic Business Roundtable?s ?Circle of Excellence? and League of United Latin American Citizens ?Businessman of the Year?. He has been featured in television, newspapers, magazines, and radio including ?Making It: Minority Success Stories?, and a KTLA Channel special, ?The Top Forty Companies with Owners under the age of Forty? by Entrepreneur Magazine. Mr. Rodriguez received the 2005 O.C. Hispanic Chairman?s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 2005 O.C. United Way?s Hispanic Influential Lifetime Achievement award.
Manuel Ramirez is President and Chief Executive Officer of RJI Ramirez Jimenez International CPAs. Manuel is a founding member of the firm and has served as President and CEO since 1993. Manuel was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a member of the California Board of Accountancy in 2007. In January, 2010, Manuel Ramirez was elected President of the California Board of Accountancy.
Manuel began his career in public accounting in 1981 in Orange County, California. He has experience in auditing and consulting with financial agencies, governmental institutions, healthcare providers, publicly traded companies, real estate developers, nonprofit organizations, and privately held enterprises. In addition to his extensive financial, accounting and auditing experience, he has specialized experience in taxation and business consulting.
Manuel holds a Masters of Science in Tax Law from Golden Gate University. He has also achieved Fellow of the American Board of Forensic Accountants status. Manuel received his Bachelor?s degree in accounting from California State University, Fullerton. Manuel is a co-founder of Hispanic 100, an organization working to help further the development of local, national and international Hispanic business and political leaders and to be a conduit to facilitate and implement the strategic resolution of issues critical to the Hispanic Community.
He also served as the last elected President and first Chairman of the Board for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Orange County. His business activism also includes participating in the area action council of Orange County for the NFIB, co-founder of NegNext PAC, co-founder of the Orange County Catholic Foundation, board member of Legatus, audit committee chairman of the Santa Ana Business Bank, finance and investment committee chairman of Make-A-Wish Foundation, finance chair for the Boy Scouts of America, along with serving on the board of two dozen other philanthropic and business organizations.
Rosario Marin is a compassionate mother, dedicated public official and consummate advocate for the disadvantaged and people with disabilities. She has served for 22 years at the local, state, and national levels. In addition, she is the author of ?Leading Between Two Worlds.? Currently she is a principal at Compendium Strategies.
Most recently she worked for Old Republic Title in the Default Management Services company as Vice President for Business Relations. She oversaw the effort to expand into new markets and government contracts.
Previously, she served in Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger?s cabinet as Secretary of the State and Consumer Services Agency from 2006 through March, 2009 where she oversaw the state?s civil rights enforcement, consumer protection, and the licensing of 2.4 million Californians in more than 255 different professions. The agency oversees the procurement of more than nearly $9 billion worth of goods and services, the management and development of the state?s real estate, oversight of two state employee pension funds, the collection of state taxes, and programs managing the hiring of state employees ? in addition to the administration of two state museums and a state park.
Secretary Marin chaired the Building Standards Commission, the Victim?s Compensation and Government Claims Board, the Governor?s Green Action Team and the Mexican-American Veterans Memorial Committee. During her tenure the state buildings codes were updated in record time and published the first in the nation Green Building Standards. The Governor?s mandate to have 25% of the states procurement go to small business were attained and surpassed and she led the development and implementation of the plan to ?green? the 1600 state?s buildings by the year 2015.
She hosted 18 foreclosure prevention workshops throughout the state bringing together financial institutions, consumer, advocates, government officials and the media to reduce the number of foreclosures in the state of California. The model was replicated by other governmental and non-profit entities.
With the achievement of a successful financial services industry career spanning two decades, Donald was named President of Pinnacle Consulting Group in 2001.
During his tenure at Pinnacle, Donald has developed unique processes and designs to implement financial strategies for various clients which include affluent business owners, highly-compensated executives, retirees, and those who have inherited wealth. Working with a team of tax professional, legal advisors and investment analysts, Donald and his associates provide comprehensive, innovative solutions to fit the financial needs of Pinnacle?s clients.
It is Donald?s strong belief that community leadership is essential to community growth and strength. He has held numerous executive positions in a variety of non-profit organizations which led him to be inducted into the Orange County Foundation, honoring the most accomplished leaders of the community.
Professionally, Donald has consistently achieved the honors of Million Dollar Roundtable, Top of the Table. Previously he was president of the National Association of Professional Insurance and Financial Advisors of Orange County, and a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors.
On a State level he accepted a Governor?s appointment to serve on the board of the California State Compensation Insurance Fund where he serves on the investment committee. It over sees the positioning of 20 billion dollars in assets. Nationally, Donald was a United State Presidential appointee where he chaired the Finance and Audit committee of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
Donald Garcia and his wife, Wendy, reside in Newport Beach, California and enjoy volunteering for various philanthropic organizations. They have been blessed with their daughter, Brooke, and son, Sho (Donald).
Bob?s career in politics spans a period of over 16 years. During that time he has participated in numerous campaigns both as a candidate and as an advisor to other campaigns. In 1995 Bob ran successfully for city council. Two years later, he successfully ran for the California State Assembly where he served three terms until 2004. While in the state assembly he chaired the Hispanic Republican Caucus. In 2001 he created the California Empowerment Project to elect Latinos to public office. He was successful in raising and funding over 1 million dollars in campaigns to elect Latinos to public office including to city council, school board, water board and members of the legislature.
Bob served as California Statewide Chairman for President Bush?s re-election, Chairman of the Latino Caucus campaign for Governor Schwarzenegger, Statewide Latino Chairman for Senator John McCain for President, Statewide Latino Coalition Co-Chair for Meg Whitman for Governor and Latino Coalition Chairman for Carly Fiorina for U.S. Senate. For over 16 years, Bob has participated in running and advising numerous campaigns or advising candidates for public office. Bob was frequently called upon to be the Latino spokesman for the Republican Caucus and for the Presidential and State Candidates.
Bob’s professional career spans 58 years. He is the Senior Member of Pacheco & Pacheco Law Offices for over 37 years. He was also appointed to the United States Naval Academy Board of Visitors by President Bush, as California Senior Advisor for Jobs and Workforce Development, a member of the Cal-OSHA Board of Appeals and an AVP of a California Bank. Bob and his wife Gayle currently own and successfully operate a multimillion dollar manufacturing company in Walnut, California.
In the California State Assembly Bob served as Vice Chair of the powerful Judiciary Committee, Higher Education, Health Committee and the Local Government Committee. He was a key member of the Budget, Ethics and Appropriation Committees as well. Bob has received numerous awards for his legislative and community contributions:
William ?Jerry? Silva is the Compliance Reliability Manager for Southern California Edison, where he joined the organization in October of 1982 working his way through many positions. He is presently responsible for leading a team of Senior Project Managers to review all proposed and adopted electric reliability regulations for applicability to Power Supply operations for SCE.
Jerry in his previous position helped sucure the required licenses/permits for capital investments in Sub-stations and Transmission projects to meet the growing demand for energy in California. He had served as the Licensing and Environmental project manager for Eldorado Ivanpah project that presently serves as the largest solar development in the United States permitted at the Nevada/California border adjacent to Primm, Nevada. He worked and managed many project teams for major SCE capital projects, met with many community leaders and regulators to address the project?s purpose and need in a particular commuunity, and manages the multi million dollar budgets. Prior to this positon, Jerry was in Public Affairs from 1993-2007 where he managed government and community relations, communications, media relations, and community outreach benefit for several communities in the San Gabriel Valley and Inland Empire areas. Worked closely with Local, state and federal government agencies in these communities.
Mr. Silva has held past positions of Project Engineer, Area Manager, and Strategic Information Manager.
Jerry is an active member of the community and serves on a variety of boards including the Hispanic 100, Hispanic Alliance for Prosperity Institute, and International Visistor Council of Los Angeles.
Mr. Silva has also served as regional judge and Chair of the Los Angeles Regional Panel for the prestigious White House Fellows program from 2000-2010. Jerry also recently received a gubernatorial appointment in early 2015 by Governor Jerry Brown and was first appointed in 2008 to serve on the Professional Engineer and Land Surveyor?s commission.
He received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration, his Bachelor of Science in Management and Organizational Behavior from La Verne University receiving Magna Cum Laude honors.
Jerry is active with family activities and traveling thoughout Europe and the Carribean. His hobbies include basketball, racquetball and an occasional game of golf.
John G. Cruz, Esq., served as Appointments Secretary to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger from August 2007 to December 2010. From 2005-2007, Mr. Cruz served as a Commissioner on the California Gambling Control Commission. Prior to entering government service, and having earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of Michigan Law School in 1979, Mr. Cruz was a practicing lawyer who handled sophisticated real estate and business transactional law matters. From 2002 to 2007, he served on the Federal Service Impasses Panel (having twice been appointed by President George W. Bush), where he resolved disputes between federal agencies and unions representing federal employees.
Mr. Cruz has lived in Orange County since 1966. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration (with an emphasis in Accounting) in 1975 from California State University, Fullerton. Among other activities, he previously served as an Officer and Trustee for the Orange County Hispanic Bar Association, as a member of the Board of Directors of the Santa Ana Education Foundation. He was also a co-founder of the Hispanic 100.
R. Julio Gudi?o III, is an exclusive agent and personal financial representative for Allstate Corporation, based in California since 1999. As such, he serves as an insurance agent and personal financial representative for over 4,500 business and individual clients in the Southern California Region.
Mr. Gudi?o is a top Allstate agent nationwide in auto, property, business and life insurance. He has a full service agency that sells all types of insurance, from personal auto and business insurance, to kidnap and ransom coverage. He was recently awarded the prestigious Allstate Chairman?s Inner Circle award for customer satisfaction, retention and profitability. He is in the top one percent of Allstate agents throughout the country, and one of only twelve agents in the state of California, to attain this level of achievement. Along with the Chairman?s Inner Circle Award, he was awarded the Allstate Insurance Co. Ray Lynch Community Service Award in 2002. This award is given to only ONE Agent out of approximately 15,000 agents nationwide per year for their dedication to their communities.
During this time, Mr. Gudi?o Founded and served as CEO and Publisher of bello Magazine, the largest national English language magazine targeting the acculturated and affluent Latino. bello Magazine was recognized by industry experts as one of the most influential Hispanic magazines of its time.
He also manages the WBC Boxings #1 mandatory challenger middleweight boxer.
Mr. Gudi?o is also called upon as a commentator for Univision and Telemundo as an Insurance Expert.
Prior to joining Allstate, Mr. Gudi?o, at the age of 23 was the youngest salesman for BASF Corporation, where he was the number one salesman nationwide for three years in a row managing a territory of over 25 million dollars.
Before Mr. Gudi?o began his corporate careers, he began working at a young age at his family?s businesses. These businesses included, auto dealerships, auto body shop, retail stores, and an ostrich and cattle ranch in Mexico.
Mr. Gudi?o also serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Rancho Santiago Community College District Foundation in Santa Ana, CA. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Goals for Life Foundation and is a former member of the Allstate Foundation Board, The Latino Coalition Foundation Board, Hispanic Business Roundtable Board and Children?s Protective Identification Video Foundation. Mr. Gudi?o is also the Chairman and founder of the United Hispanic Foundation.
Mr. Gudi?o and his wife Denise have been married for 15 years and have two beautiful children, Ariana Chanel (10) and Julio Christian (8).
Rudy M. Beserra is Senior Vice President for Latin Affairs at The Coca-Cola Company. He began his career 27 years ago, in 1989, after serving as special assistant to President Ronald Reagan on Latino and Small Business Affairs.
A native of Albuquerque, Rudy is a graduate of the University of New Mexico. From modest roots, he has built a long, successful career as an advocate and voice for the Latino community. With Coca-Cola, he has strengthened the company’s bridge to hundreds of Latino organizations and small businesses in the U.S.
Rudy is an active member of a number of prominent Latino-focused organizations, including the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC); the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute (CHLI), of which he is a founding member; and he serves on the board of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI). In the past, Rudy has served as chairman of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF).
In 2016, Rudy was included in Latino Leaders magazine’s “101 Most Influential Latinos of 2016”, recognized as one of the “exemplary individuals” who “have dedicated their lives to education, culture and the success of generations to come.”
In 2011, Rudy received the NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Award. That same year, he was awarded the Hector Barreto “Con Ganas” Award at the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) annual convention in Miami for his advocacy promoting Latino businesses in the private sector.
In 2007, he received the Executive of the Year Award from the Association of Latin Professionals in Finance. His other citations include the 1995 Hispanic Community Commitment Award by the Latin American Management Association; a special recognition award in 2006 by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; and the 2007 Hispanic Leadership Award from the Dominican Times.
In 1987, during his tenure with President Reagan’s administration, Rudy was a special assistant to President Reagan in the Office of Public Liaison. He was instrumental in creating The Hispanic Heritage Foundation’s (HHF) Hispanic Heritage Awards. They were established by the White House to commemorate the creation of Hispanic Heritage month in the United States.
For the past 29 years, the Hispanic Heritage Awards have honored Latino leaders in various fields who have made a positive impact in the United States and around the globe. The awards are unique in that physicians, scientists, educators, innovators, public officials, community and business leaders, and even young leaders are presented the coveted award.
Rudy lives in Atlanta with his wife, Lois, and two daughters.
The Honorable Grace Flores-Hughes serves as Vice Chair, F&H 2, Inc., a management consulting business. She is a public speaker, television and media commentator and was a weekly contributor to VOXXI.com and currently guest contributor to Latino Magazine. Mrs. Flores-Hughes’ memoir, A Tale of Survival was published in 2011 and was awarded Honorable Mention by the New England and Southwest Book Festivals and the International Book Awards in 2013.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes has had a successful public service career both as a civil servant and as a political appointee. Her expertise lies in strategic managerial structure, including management crisis, conflict resolution and mediation and immigration/refugee policy. She has arbitration skills as a member of the Federal Service Impasses Panel. Additionally, Mrs. Flores-Hughes has been a college instructor in the areas of American Government and Public Policy.
Her last presidential appointment was in 2009 when President George W. Bush reappointed Mrs. Flores-Hughes as a member of the Federal Service Impasses Panel (FISP)–the Federal Labor Relations Authority to a five-year term. As a member of the FISP she was responsible for resolving impasses between federal agencies and unions representing employees arising from negotiations over conditions of employment through arbitration.
Prior to serving in the Bush Administration, Mrs. Flores-Hughes served in the Reagan and Bush Administrations in various capacities among them was being appointed to the Community Relations Service (CRS) at the Department of Justice where she served as the first woman Director/Assistant Attorney General from 1988-92. As Director, Mrs. Flores-Hughes led an agency with close to 100 employees and a budget of approximately $30M. She was responsible for developing policies and establishing priorities with respect to the resolution of racial and ethnic conflict in communities throughout the country, and the resettlement of Cuban/Haitian refugees in the United States. CRS partnered with the National Center for Missing & Exploited as part of the agency’s hotline initiative. CRS also assisted during national disasters to provide disaster relief and recovery activities as part of its conflict resolution mandate. And was part of a federal effort to reduce youth gangs and drugs.
During the late 1980’s and early 90’s, Mrs. Flores-Hughes led the federal resettlement plan of unaccompanied minors entering the U.S. from Central America. She set in motion a resettlement plan that is in place today at the Dept. of Health & Human Services. The plan included but not limited to the following; working with non-profits that would help to provide shelters for unaccompanied minors, working with local and state officials regarding placing minors in their communities until reunited with their families or deported and coordinating federal efforts with the Border Patrol to ensure the minors were processed quickly so they could be sent to temporary shelters and/or foster homes in anticipation of their being reunited them with their families or deported. She has extensive experience working in immigration and refugee policy issues.
Before joining the Department of Justice, Mrs. Flores-Hughes was the first woman to serve as Associate Administrator for Minority Small Business and Capital Ownership Development at the Small Business Administration. As Associate Administrator, Mrs. Flores-Hughes managed over 20 employees with a budget of approximately $40M. During her tenure, Mrs. Hughes initiated a number of innovative policy changes associated with reforming the 8(a) program.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes has extensive knowledge of the federal government. She began her federal career as a GS-2 at Kelly AFB and subsequently transferred from the Department of Defense to the Department of Health, Education & Welfare where she assumed higher levels of management responsibility. She later worked in the Department of Health & Human Services as Acting Director of the Office of Hispanic Americans and was responsible for the development and implementation of social policy and programs regarding Hispanic Americans and where she helped coin the term “Hispanic” for the federal government.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes is fluent in both English and Spanish and has written and presented a number of professional papers including, “The Origin of the Term Hispanic,” Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy, 2006.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes was a Visiting Professor in the Political Science Departments of the University of Nebraska-Omaha and Nebraska Wesleyan University.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes was appointed by Virginia Governors George Allen and Jim Gilmore to serve on the VA Board of Professional and Occupational Regulation & the Board of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She served on the 1st Board of Visitors, Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute and served on the Diversity Advisory Committee for the Virginia National Guard.
She has received numerous awards and recognitions including, CNN Hero, 1990 Outstanding Public Service Award presented by the American Society for Public Administration. She is included in Who’s Who in America, in the Hispanic American Profiles, Ballantine Book and in Notable Hispanic American Women, Gale Research. Mrs. Flores-Hughes was named in Hispanic Business Magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the U.S., and awarded Hispanic of the Year, 11th Cong. District of Virginia.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes is a member of numerous organizations and serves on the following non-profit boards; the Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy, the Media Policy Center and the Hispanic Foundation for the Arts.
She has been an active participant in Republican state and federal political campaigns, including; most recently served as member of the Trump Hispanic Advisory Council, she also worked on the Tom Davis Va. Congressional race, the Reagan/Bush Reelection 84’ campaign, the presidential campaigns of Dole/Kemp, Bush/Quayle, and Bush/Cheney. She also served on the 84’ Inaugural Committee. She was president of the Alexandria Commonwealth Women’s Club and has served in various high level positions in three Republican administrations.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes holds a Master of Arts Degree in Public Administration, Harvard University and a B.A. in Child Psychology, University of the District of Columbia.
Mrs. Flores-Hughes is a native of Taft, Texas. She is married to Lt. General Harley A. Hughes, USAF (Ret), and resides in Alexandria, Virginia.
erome (Jerry) Pierce Jr. is the President of The Interamerica Group, (TIG) a leading management consulting and government relations firm based in Washington DC. and Sao Paulo, Brazil. In this capacity, Mr. Pierce has advised hundreds of companies and federal government agencies on improving efficiencies and outputs while reducing costs by incorporating the latest in innovative technology. He is an expert on Brazilian commerce, government and culture and advises US companies on strategies on entering the Latin American market. Mr. Pierce is also an owner and board member of USA Hispanic and Politico Hispano newspapers where he writes on issues pertaining to business, government, and politics in the US and Latin America. He is fluent in both Spanish and Portuguese.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Pierce served as Deputy Mayor of Jersey City, New Jersey where he supported the Mayor with the successful introduction of the medical saving accounts, school choice programs, and property tax debt securitization programs, which helped, lead to the resurgence of the city.
Prior to this Mr. Pierce served President George H.W. Bush and Secretary Jack Kemp as an Assistant Secretary of Administration. In this capacity, he had direct oversight over the Housing agency’s annual budget, information technology, finance and accounting, personnel, procurement and contracts. During this time, Mr. Pierce received exceptional insight to the inner workings of the U.S Congress, the White House/ Executive Branch and the diverse government agencies.
Mr. Pierce has experience in the corporate world working as an executive with Mobil Oil and Unocal Chemicals. During his tenure at the companies, Mr. Pierce worked in sales and business development of petroleum products and chemicals and created the direct export division of these products to the Caribbean and Latin America
Immediately upon graduation from college, Mr. Pierce served as a missionary and volunteer with El Verbo Ministries in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua. In this capacity, he provided diverse services to people with special needs, including teaching at local schools, working on prison rehabilitation projects, and providing counseling for drug-addicted teens.
Pierce received his Bachelor’s Degree in Latin American Studies and Spanish from Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, where he excelled as captain of the football team. He is the all-time leading tackler at Dartmouth with 387 tackles including 35 in one game. He is recognized by ESPN in its encyclopedia of college football as a part of the all-time Dartmouth Team. He received the prestigious Swede Nelson Award given by the Boston Gridiron Association for outstanding achievement in academics, athletics, sportsmanship and citizenship. He performed his graduate studies in Public Administration at American University.
Politically, Mr. Pierce served as a member of President George W Bush’s Transition Advisory Committee, and worked on the Bush-Cheney ’00 and ’04 National Finance Committees, and the Rudy Giuliani 2008 presidential campaign. He worked on the finance team for the Donald J Trump presidential campaign and served as a Trump surrogate to the international media. He is now a member of the Trump Hispanic Advisory Council.
Mr. Pierce is a 2014 recipient of the Golden Rule International Award given out by the United Nations for his service to humanity. He is a contributing writer to China Go Abroad, Latam Founders newsletters Politico Hispano newspaper and to his blog at www.theinteramericagroup.com/blog.
Massey Villarreal is CEO and President of Precision Task Group, Inc., (PTG). PTG is a Hispanic-owned and managed technical system’s integration firm providing business solutions to public and private sector firms. Hispanic Business Magazine named Massey Villarreal as one of the one hundred most influential Hispanics in the United States.
Mr. Villarreal was the first person to ever serve as chairman of a local, state, and national Hispanic chamber when he served as chairman of the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Texas Association of Mexican American Chambers of Commerce (TAMACC) based in Austin Texas, and the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) headquartered in Washington, D.C. While serving an additional 3-year term on the Board of Directors of the USHCC, Massey was elected Chairman of the USHCC Foundation.
Mr. Villarreal serves on the Board of the Greater Houston Partnership. Other community boards that he has served on include the Bio Houston, Houston Technology Center, JP Morgan Chase Bank, Collaborative for Children, Neighborhood Centers, Inc., and Houston Super Bowl XXXVIII. Current boards include Lone Star College Foundation board, Houston Golf Association, Houston Final Four Committee, American Red Cross of Houston, AIPAC National Council, and the Memorial Hermann Hospital System Board.
On January 19th 2016, Texas Governor Greg Abbott named Massey Villarreal to the Economic Incentive Oversight Board for a term to expire at the pleasure of the Governor. Additionally, Massey was named the Presiding Officer of the aforementioned committee.
Texas Governor Rick Perry re-appointed Massey to the Texas Economic Development Corporation. Massey served for one year in a vacated position on the Texas Public Finance Authority until December 2009. The authority issues and sells bonds for designated state agencies in order to finance the acquisition or construction of buildings. Prior to this recent appointment, Governor Perry appointed Mr. Villarreal as presiding officer (Chairman) of the governing board of the Texas Department of Economic Development (TxEd). Mr. Villarreal led a successful transition of the agency to the Governor’s office, effective September 1, 2003. On September 23, 2003, Governor Rick Perry announced a new $5 million marketing campaign – Texas One – to continue the state’s recent string of successful job creation efforts led by Mr. Villarreal. It will assist public and private efforts to promote the state’s excellent business climate, skilled workforce, strong education system and convenient access to emerging markets. In July 7 2007, Massey was appointed by Houston Mayor Bill White to serve on the Gulf Coast Economic Workforce Development Board.
In September 2001, Mr. Villarreal completed a six-year appointment by former George W. Bush to the Board of Regents of the Texas State University System, which is composed of nine university components throughout Texas. Student enrollment for the system exceeds 56,000 and an annual operating budget of half a billion dollars.
In addition to his business interest, Mr. Villarreal was elected and re-elected Chairman of the Board for the Republican National Hispanic Assembly (RNHA), which is based in Washington, D.C. The RNHA represents the interest of over seven millions Hispanic Republicans in the United States. Massey served on the National Steering Committee for the Viva Bush Campaign during the President’s re-election. Massey is Chairman of the Hispanic Alliance for Prosperity Institute based in Washington, D.C. whose mission is to promote policy and legislation to advance traditional Hispanic values, full economic participation, prosperity, and entrepreneurship. Recently, Massey was named Texas co-chair of Juntos con Romney Presidential campaign and a member of the National Advisory board for the Hispanic Leadership Network (HLN). Recently, Massey Villarreal joined the Marco Rubio for President Team.
Mr. Villarreal is a native of Corpus Christi, Texas and resides in Sugar Land, Texas. Mr. Villarreal holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Texas A&M -Corpus Christi, formerly Corpus Christi State University.
Rick Figueroa, a native Texan with over 25 years of experience in the financial sector, serves as 1st Vice-President with UBS Financial Services in Houston, Texas and is a partner of the Caton Figueroa Group; which provides financial strategy, solutions and reviews. Rick received a B.A. in Accounting and M.S. in Land Economics from Texas A&M University in 1991 and 1992, respectively. He has since earned numerous certifications which include: CPA, Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC), Certified Financial Manager (CFM), and Certified Special Needs Advisor (CSNA) with the Private Client Group.
Rick joined Arthur Andersen in 1992; in 1995 he transferred to Halliburton and from 1997 to 2008 served as a Vice President and Senior Financial Advisor at Merrill Lynch, where in 2007, he was honored with the Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion Award and the Merrill Lynch Greater Houston Complex Values Award. In 2009 he joined UBS Financial Services Inc. where he currently is employed.
As a community leader, Rick is actively involved by serving on the governing boards of numerous community organizations. He has held leadership positions with the National Hispanic Coalition for the Trump Campaign in 2016, appointed commissioner of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation by Governor Greg Abbott in 2016, and appointed to the Texas Judicial Council by Governor Rick Perry in 2008. That same year former President George W. Bush invited Rick to the White House to be recognized as a leader within the Hispanic community.
(Please see below for an overview of Rick’s community involvement)
In addition to his work in the community, Rick is often quoted in the media, both broadcast and print, as an expert on investing and personal finance trends.
Rick’s business philosophy is centered around the client, looking at the big picture and focusing on client’s goals and aspirations. While insisting on understanding the specific situations and goals of the clients he works with, Rick endeavors to establish deep and valued and lifelong relationships. He enjoys traveling with his wife and four children, playing golf, spending time at his ranch with family and friends, and being involved with his church Champion Fellowship in Brenham, Texas.
Steve Cortes has appeared daily on TV news programs for a decade. His broadcast career began at CNBC where he commented on financial markets, primarily as part of the “Fast Money” franchise. In recent years he transitioned to politics, serving in 2016 as a primary TV surrogate for the Trump presidential campaign and was named to Trump’s Hispanic Advisory Council. Regarding his hundreds of TV hits on behalf of Team Trump, Maria Bartiromo of Fox News said “Steve was a strong communicator who understood very early on what the people wanted in a commander-in-chief.” Post-election, Cortes remains an informal advisor to the President and signed-on with Fox News as a contributor and as national spokesman for the Hispanic 100.
For two decades, Steve has worked on Wall Street as a trader and strategist, and presently serves as head strategist for BGC Partners, providing risk management strategies to banks and hedge funds.
He graduated from Georgetown University, which nominated him for the Rhodes Scholarship. He lives in Chicago with his wife and four children.