Edward Escudero is President and CEO of High Desert Capital, LLC, a finance company that specializes in providing various types of capital alternatives to small and mid-size companies. Until 2013, Ed was the Executive Vice-President and CFO of C&R Distributing, a major distributor of fuel and lubricants and owner of various convenience stores in West Texas and Southern New Mexico. He also served as the Secretary and CFO of Petro Shopping Centers, L.P. During his tenure at Petro, the Company grew to have locations in over 34 states and sales of over $2 billion. While at Petro, he held the vital role of managing key departments within the Company, including Accounting, Legal, Human Resources, Audit, Financial Planning, and Information Systems. In 2007, Ed was instrumental in assembling the sale of Petro.
Ed believes in playing a key role in community affairs. Ed currently serves on several boards, including El Paso Electric Company, WestStar Bank, Sierra Providence East Medical Center, El Paso Community Foundation Investment Committee, El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation. He also served on the Texas State Securities Board from 2007-2011. Ed has received several awards that recognize his achievements and philanthropic efforts, including the El Paso Community Spirit Award in 2015, El Paso Business Hall of Fame in 2014, Hispanos Triunfadores Award in 2013 and the UTEP Gold Nugget Award in 2012.
He received his B.B.A. in Accounting from the University of Texas at El Paso. He and his wife, Margie, live with their two children in El Paso, Texas.
Henry Yoshawirja is a computer engineer and accomplished businessman on a global level, Yoshawirja is a founding partner of Axxion Group Corporation, a company that began as a technology import and export trading house between the U.S. and Asia. Eventually, it evolved and grew, servicing a customer base that included industry trendsetters such as IBM, NetApp and Dell. In 1999, Axxion merged with Loyalty Founder Enterprise of Taiwan, its manufacturing arm, and then went public.
By 2010, Axxion was the strategic supplier partner for global contract manufacturers such as Jabil and Celestica, which provide the supply chain to all large electronic multinationals. As Axxion prospered, Yoshawirja and his partners continued to explore and develop business opportunities in real estate, a sports club, and various other entities. Through the years, he has developed trusted business partnerships and working relationships among large multinational companies throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia.
Yoshawirja has a BA in Computer Engineering and an MBA, both from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.
Rafael Adame is the president and managing partner of Mexus Group, President and CEO of Mexus Communications, LLC, an IT outsourcing, Wi-Fi sales, management, and ownership company. He is also Chairman and CEO of RAL Investments, a real estate investment LLC. Adame is a founding member of the Paso del Norte Group, the vice chair of the El Paso Community College Foundation, chair of the Ysleta and El Paso Independent School District Foundations, member of the Board of Directors for the Medical Center of the Americas Foundation, Chair of Hospice of El Paso, Chair of the Boys Club of El Paso Foundation, and Vice Chair and Secretary of the Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority aka/CRRMA.
Prior to acquiring Mexus, Adame was the Director for Business Development at DTSI, Executive Vice President of Rio Grande ComputerLand, President of Federal Systems Group d.b.a. FSG, Executive Vice President of Compatible Micro Solutions, Reseller Account Executive for New Mexico and west Texas for Apple Computer, Inc., and Store Manager of Computer Technology Associates. Adame has served the public on the following boards and committees: City of El Paso Airport Board, City of El Paso Cable Commission, City of El Paso Public Utility Regulation Board/Chair, County of El Paso Civil Service Commission, and County of El Paso Risk Pool Commission.
He has also participated in the following organizations: Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce (executive committee member and board of directors), Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (committee chair and board of directors), Regional Economic Development Corporation, Boys & Girls Clubs of El Paso Board of Directors, Rotary Club of El Paso (board of directors, civic committee chair), United Way Allocations Committee (chair), American Cancer Society (board of directors), El Paso Symphony Orchestra (board of directors), and Sun Bowl Team Luncheon (chair).
Adame graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) with a B.B.A. with a Computer Science option and El Paso Technical High School. Mr. Adame is married to Margaret Adame Torres and the proud parent of two daughters Margaret Nicole Adame Winningham and Gabrielle Renee Almengor.
Lisa Budtke is the Assistant Treasurer of El Paso Electric Company. She is responsible for Cash Management, Financial Forecasting, and Investor Relations. The bulk of Lisa’s career was spent working for Petro Stopping Centers, L.P. (Petro) and an affiliated company in various financial and leadership capacities. Her last position at Petro was Treasurer, Assistant Secretary, and Director of Finance, where she oversaw the areas of credit, accounts payable, audit services, fixed assets, treasury, tax, and financial planning. Lisa also worked for a few other local companies including Columbia Healthcare and Verde Realty.
She holds a Bachelor of Accountancy from New Mexico State University and has earned her MBA from the University of Phoenix. She has been recognized as a YWCA Reach Award Honoree and graduated Class of XXIV from Leadership El Paso, and graduated from Leadership Texas in 2013. She has also been active in the community, serving as past President and Treasurer of the Big Brothers Big Sisters Board. Lisa is a member of the National Association of Professional Women and Financial Women in Texas.
Miguel Fernández serves as CEO of Transtelco, a telecommunications carrier established in 2001. The company is one of a very few telecommunications service providers that cover both the U.S. and Mexico border states. In this position Fernández is responsible for the implementation of the strategic goals and objectives of the organization. He graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso in 1998 with bachelor’s degree in business administration with a concentration in finance.
L. Frederick “Rick” Francis is Chairman and CEO of the Board of WestStar Bank Holding Company, Inc. and Executive Chairman of WestStar Bank. Mr. Francis serves on the Board of Regents for Texas Tech University System and is the former Chairman. He serves on the Board of Directors for Providence Memorial Hospital and Sierra Medical Center of which he is Past Chairman. He is a member of the Board of Directors for Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR), the El Paso Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the Medical Center of the Americas Foundation, and the Executive Committee of the BorderPlex Binational Alliance. Mr. Francis served as 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 was a member of the Executive Committee for the Texas Hospital Trustees.
Mr. Francis 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. In 1996, Mr. Francis was honored as a “Silver Beaver” by the Boy Scouts of America and, in 2001, received the Dean’s Distinguished Service Award from the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. In 2005, he was named “Outstanding Ex” by Coronado High School and “Distinguished Alumni” by the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business at Texas Tech University in 2008. In 2007, Rick and his wife, Ginger, were named El Paso’s “Philanthropists of the Year” by the Association of Fundraising Professionals. In 2009, he was named “El Pasoan of the Year” by El Paso Inc. and in 2010 was inducted into the El Paso Business Hall of Fame.
He is a graduate of Texas Tech University (BBA Finance), and Texas Tech Intermediate School of Banking, and the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking conducted at Southern Methodist University. Mr. Francis has been a director of WestStar Bank, formerly known as Bank of the West-El Paso, since 1996.
Ted Houghton is chair of the Texas Transportation Commission, which oversees statewide activities of the Texas Department of Transportation. Gov. Rick Perry appointed Houghton chair on Oct. 7, 2011. He was originally appointed to the commission in December 2003 and reappointed in February 2009. A native of El Paso, Houghton is self-employed in the professional fields of financial services, executive benefits, and estate planning. He is the first resident of El Paso to serve on the commission.
Houghton has served on the School Land Board. He also served for eight years on the El Paso Water Utilities Public Service Board. For El Paso's Rapid Transit Board, he served as vice president, chair of the public relations and communications committee, and treasurer of the political action committee. He also served on the board of directors of the El Paso Electric Company and as president of the Sun Bowl Association. He was a member of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Committee.
Houghton is a graduate of Coronado High School and went on to earn a business degree from the University of Texas at El Paso. He is married to Hettie Cardon Houghton and they have five children.
Rodolfo "Rudy" Mata established the law firm, Rodolfo Mata, P.C., with practice areas that include real estate, banking, commercial transactions, foreclosures, business organizations and immigration. Mata is admitted to practice law in Texas, New Mexico and Massachusetts (inactive status) and is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Eastern, Northern, Southern and Western Districts of Texas and the District of New Mexico. He is also a member and former President of the Mexican American Bar Association, a member of the El Paso Bar Association and is an active member of the Sunturians, a local civic organization.
Prior to entering private practice, Rudy served as Law Clerk to United States Federal District Court Judge David Briones in the El Paso Division of the Western District of Texas and also served as Law Clerk to the Justices of the Land Court in Boston, Massachusetts. In addition, Rudy is a former member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, the professional arm of the American Planning Association. Rudy has served on the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Association of Hispanic Attorneys, the Steering Committee for the Massachusetts Environmental Justice Network, and is a former member of the Boston Bar Association. Rudy sat on the City of El Paso Brownfields Redevelopment Board, is a former member of the board of directors for the El Paso Collaborative for Community and Economic Development and is a past Chair of the Hispanic Issues Section for the State Bar of Texas.
Mata is a graduate of Riverside High School and received his Bachelor of Arts in architecture from Princeton University. He simultaneously pursued a law degree from Boston College Law School and a master in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While at Boston College Law School, Rudy served as Editor-in-Chief of the Boston College Third World Law Journal. Rudy is married to Elizabeth Wechsler Mata, a patent attorney, and they have three children.
Judy Robison is steeped in the El Paso community, serving on several boards including Texas Cultural Trust, State Board for Educator Certification, and the Paso del Norte Health Foundation. She and her husband, Kirk, own Pizza Properties Inc., QSR Burgers; and several race horses.
Robert E. Skov is a partner of Skov Farms, LLC, which farms 2,200 acres of cotton, alfalfa, wheat, pecans, grain sorghum, chile, and onions. He is a partner in a number of real estate joint ventures and in LL&SS Development Company. He served on the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors, is the Vice-Chairman for 1st National Bank of El Paso and the Co-Chairman of the Board of the Camino Real Angels (an investment group of 35 El Paso businessmen).
He has worked as director of the El Paso County Water Improvement District #1, President and Chairman of the Board for the El Paso Valley Cotton Association, Master of the Fabens Masonic Lodge #1202, Treasurer of the El Paso County Farm Bureau, Vice President of Southwest Irrigated Cotton Growers (a cotton marketing co-operative), Vice President of the Tornillo Gin Company, President and Chairman of the Board for the Supima Association of America, Director of the Texas Association of Cotton Producers, delegate to the National Cotton Council, and delegate to the Cotton Producer Steering Committee for the State of Texas. He was appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture to the U.S. Cotton Board.
For 15 years, Skov was involved in cotton promotion and marketing, as well as directing or participating as a member of trade teams to Japan, Germany, People's Republic of China, Korea, Bangkok, France, Taiwan, England, Italy, Hong Kong, Sweden, and Switzerland. Skov worked for United Way, Toys for Tots, and the El Paso County Livestock Show and Auction. He is a past member of Board of Trustees of Providence Memorial Hospital, a former member of the Business Advisory Committee for UTEP, a past member of UTEP Development Board, a past Trustee and Chairman of the Board of Paso Del Norte Health Foundation, a past member of Texas Tech Medical School (El Paso) Development Board, and a past and founding member of the Paso Del Norte Group.
Skov is a graduate of Ysleta High School in El Paso and an all-state football and all-district basketball player. He graduated with honors from Stanford University in Economics, and from the University of Texas at El Paso with a Master of Science in Economics. He is retired from the U.S. Marine Corps with rank of Major in 1985. He is married to Jacqueline. They have a son, a daughter, and four grandchildren. He is a member of Cielo Vista Church.
Linda C. Troncoso is a civil engineer and a principal of TRE & Associates, LLC (TRE). TRE was formed in December 2011 by Ms. Troncoso and Adrian H. Rosas, P.E. in association with John M. Jansing Jr, P.E. as the successor to the El Paso Office of Gray, Jansing & Associates, Inc.
Troncoso has been involved in the master-planning, design and construction of regional municipal and land development projects in east El Paso with extensive governmental coordination between the City of El Paso, County of El Paso, Texas Department of Transportation, El Paso Metropolitan Planning Organization, El Paso Water Utilities, the Texas General Land Office and local municipal utility districts. She has served on numerous committees for the City of El Paso regarding changes to municipal development and construction regulations.
Troncoso is a native El Pasoan and a graduate of the University of Texas at El Paso with a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and a Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering. She currently serves as chairperson of the Land Use Council and board member for the El Paso Association of Builders. She is a committee member of the Infrastructure and Development Committee for the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce and is a board member of the Susan G. Komen El Paso Affiliate.
James Volk is the district executive for BBVA Compass Bank responsible for the El Paso and Southern New Mexico markets. Prior to that, his career as a bank executive spans back to the 1980s. Before BBVA, he was the regional president and director of State National Bank for five years, which was preceded by three years as president, director and CEO of State National Bank of El Paso.
He received a B.S. in Agricultural Business from South Dakota State University. He also received education from the Colorado School of Banking, ABA Commercial Lending School, Midwest Banking Institute, ABA Graduate School of Banking and Investment and Financial Management. His community involvement includes work with Las Palmas/Del Sol Medical Center Board of Trustees, Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority, and BBVA Compass Bank Development Board.
Meyer Marcus is chairman and owner of MIMCO Inc. in El Paso, Texas. Marcus is an El Paso native whose real estate career began in 1972 collecting rents and making repairs to properties owned by his father. He progressed to buying and selling land, developing and redeveloping shopping center properties, warehouse properties and office buildings, with the primary focus always on creating high quality projects that are efficient and functional. Together with a small group of local investors, he has built a portfolio of over 325 properties in the El Paso, Las Cruces, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin and Rio Grande Valley markets all under MIMCO’S management. Over this same time period, through his direct hands-on training, he has grown MIMCO, Inc. into a staff of 32 professionals focused on leasing, property management property maintenance, and real estate development.
Meyer is also very involved in the El Paso community and presently serves on the Board of Directors of the Bank of the West, the Advisory Board of the Paul Foster Texas Tech Medical School, Founding Board of Directors of the Borderplex Community Trust, and is the Director of Make-A-Wish Foundation of the El Paso local chapter.
Brent D. Harris is the executive chairman and CEO of Industrial Realty Group Incorporated. Industrial Realty Group was formed in 1994 to develop, own and manage manufacturing and warehousing facilities in El Paso, Texas. Industrial Realty Group also provides third party land and building pre-acquisition due diligence, development and property management services. Harris is also the managing general partner of Plexxar, a real estate investment company that owns of over 350 acres of land and 692,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse facilities in northwest El Paso.
In addition, Harris is president of various Mills Plaza Properties entities and FSW Investments, developer and owner of the Mills and Centre Buildings, the Fountains at Farah, the Plaza Hotel, and various other buildings and land in downtown El Paso along with 128 acres of land in northwest El Paso.
Harris was a member of the Governing Board of Sierra Providence Health Network for seven years where he served as Chairman for two years. He also serves as a board member of the El Paso Downtown Management District, the Wells Fargo Advisory Board and is on the Board of Directors for two of the Medical Center of the America’s real estate entities, MCA Tech Park and MCA Realty.
Gary Hedrick is an adjunct professor of corporate enterprise at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). He worked at El Paso Electric for more than 30 years in various positions including president and chief executive officer, served on the El Paso Electric board from 2001 until 2009. In addition to being a professor, Hedrick serves on the Development Board for UTEP, as well as several for-profit, and not-for-profit civic and charitable boards. He has an MBA and a BBA from UTEP.
Emma Wollschlager Schwartz, MPH, serves as president for the Medical Center of the Americas (MCA) Foundation, a non-profit organization that drives the vision for positioning the Paso del Norte region as the premier center of health delivery, medical education and biomedical research for military, border and Hispanic populations. Prior to the MCA Foundation, Schwartz was founder and president of Wollschlager Consulting, LLC, d/b/a W Consulting, LLC, a healthcare management and regulatory compliance consulting company.
Before launching her own consulting firm, she was director of Compliance Consulting for Sinaiko Healthcare Consulting, Inc. in Los Angeles (now Altegra). While at Sinaiko, she regularly lead operational performance improvement projects, prepared detailed business and strategic plans, created operational and billing related policies and procedures, audited claims and processes for specific audit protocols, and developed and monitored compliance programs for environments as varied as hospitals, physician practices, clinical laboratories, dialysis facilities and diagnostic imaging centers. She is a co-author of the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethic’s “The Complete Compliance and Ethics Manual,” and she has been published in the Journal of Health Care Compliance, Bureau of National Affairs’ Health Care Fraud Report, Chimera (the quarterly Journal for the American Society of Transplant Surgeons), American College of Cardiology Annual Abstract Compilation and Cardiovascular Disease Management.
Schwartz’s involvement in the community includes work as director of WestStar Bank in El Paso and the Paso del Norte Center of Hope, an anti-human trafficking outreach and victim support organization. She is a member of the Borderplex Alliance, which was formerly the Paso del Norte Group. She is also on the Advisory Board of the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce and previously served as a trustee on the YWCA Foundation Board, a director of the La Fe Preparatory Academy board and a lay member of the TTUHSC Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee.
Her Bachelor of Arts degree is in Human Biology from Stanford University with a concentration in Comparative Health Policy. Her Masters is from the UCLA School of Public Health in Health Services Management.