TEXAS OVERVIEW
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A Board as Big as Texas

TEXAS OVERVIEW
by Ron Starner
E

ver wonder how Texas became the No. 1 state for corporate location projects and expansions, or how Texas became the best state for business, or how Texas became the No. 1 state for exports?

In the pages of this guide, you will find answers to all these questions along with many others that explain the decades-long dominance of the Lone Star State. But you should also know that underpinning a great deal of this success is a group of leaders who put their money where their mouths are. They are the members of the Board of Directors of the Texas Economic Development Corporation.

Investors in the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization known as the TxEDC, these leaders collectively fund the marketing of Texas to the world. Anytime a business is recruited to Texas, you can bet your last dollar that TxEDC played a role in the outreach. TxEDC is a public-private partnership that markets Texas as a premier business destination to corporate decision-makers and site selection consultants worldwide.

According to an official statement on the board’s website, “Our areas of strategic focus serve as the foundation of Texas’ economic development and marketing success.” The board does this by focusing on four core areas:

  • Establishing a statewide network of business leaders to stimulate job-creating investment in Texas.
  • Executing a bold plan to market Texas across the U.S. and globally as the destination of the future.
  • Expanding the state’s presence with national and international trade visits.
  • Elevating and promoting economic growth of existing business and regions throughout Texas.

TxEDC is a public-private partnership that markets Texas as a premier business destination to corporate decision-makers and site selection consultants worldwide.

Recent trade missions to Germany, France, UK and India were conducted by TxEDC to attract and recruit foreign direct investment to Texas. TxEDC also produces and distributes the “Just One Thing” newsletter to encourage businesses to “Go Big in Texas.”

The Board of TxEDC is comprised of leaders of many of the largest companies based in Texas. The former Chairperson of the Board is Vicki Hollub, President and CEO of Occidental. Vice Chair is Arun Agarwal, CEO of Nexxt. Secretary is Adrian Cannady, President and CEO of Temple Economic Development Corporation. Treasure is S. David Deanda Jr., President of Lone Star National Bank.

Vicki Hollub President and CEO Occidental
Vicki Hollub
President and CEO
Occidental
Arun Agarwal
Arun Agarwal
CEO
Nextt
Katie Farmer
Katie Farmer
President and CEO
BNSF Railway
L. Frederick “Rick” Francis
VL. Frederick “Rick” Francis
Executive Chairman
WestStar
George “Trey” Henderson III
George “Trey” Henderson III
Manager and Owner
Henderson Community Ltd.
Peter J. Holt
Peter J. Holt
CEO and General Manager
Holt Cat
Adrian Cannady
Adrian Cannady
President and CEO
Temple Economic Development Corporation
S. David Deanda Jr.
S. David Deanda Jr.
President
Lone Star National Bank
Elizabeth Killinger
Elizabeth Killinger
Senior Advisor
NRG
Eduardo Margain
Eduardo Margain
CEO and Founder
Pixiu Investments
Adriana Cruz
Adriana Cruz
Executive Director, Economic Development and Tourism
Office of Governor Greg Abbott
Aaron Demerson Headshot
Aaron Demerson
President and CEO
Texas Economic Development Corporation

TxEDC Investors

The TxEDC is funded by a lengthy list of investors from around the state and nation. Lead investors are part of the CEO Council: Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, BNSF Railway, Calpine, Capital One, CenterPoint Energy, Enterprise Products Partners L.P., Formentera Partners, Frost, Go Car Insurance, Gulf States Toyota, Holt Cat, Hunt, Infosys, McKesson, NRG, Occidental, ONCOR, Ryan, Sempra Energy, Tata Consultancy Services, Texas Capital Bank, The University of Texas System, Toyota, Valero, Vistra Energy and WoodForest National Bank.

The Executive Council includes: The Electric Company – El Paso Electric, ExxonMobil, Happy State Bank & Trust Company, Kleinheinz Family Foundation, McLane, Samsung Austin Semiconductor, Transwestern and WestStar.

Developer Council members are Blue Bell Creameries, Cheniere, Google and Hillwood.

TxEDC Annual Investors are Opportunity Austin, Greater San Antonio Regional Economic Partnership, Greater Houston Partnership, Amarillo Economic Development, The Borderplex Alliance, City of Dallas, The City of El Paso, HDR, Irving Economic Development Partnership, Lubbock Economic Development Alliance, McKinney Economic Development Corporation, Port of Brownsville, Puerto Verde Global Trade Bridge, AEP Texas, Arlington, Plano, City of Sugar Land, Dallas Regional Chamber, Develop Abilene, Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation, Greater Conroe Economic Development Council, New Braunfels Chamber, Greater San Marcos Partnership, Lone Star College, Pearland Economic Development Corporation, STEC, Temple Economic Development Corporation and Yates Construction.

Investors in TxEDC are regularly involved in capital investment projects of their own in Texas. For example, recent investment deals involving TxEDC investors include:

  • Samsung announced that it plans to more than double its total semiconductor investment in the Lone Star State to approximately $44 billion. The South Korean firm said it would concentrate this investment in Taylor just outside of Austin.
  • Amazon announced plans to build a new $250 million data center in Round Rock near Austin. The complex will be built on 150 acres just north of the State Highway 45 tollway. Amazon also announced that it will build a last-mile distribution facility just off County Road 172 in Round Rock, where the firm will create roughly 150 to 200 new jobs.
  • Meanwhile, Cheniere’s Corpus Christi LNG plant is about 53% complete, the company said. The $8 billion expansion project is expected to be ready to begin production by sometime in late 2024.

To see the full list of investors, go to: 
https://businessintexas.com/about/investors/

For more information on how to join TxEDC, and for information on all TxEDC events, contact 
Christin Evans, vice president of external affairs, at christin@businessintexas.com.

Ron Starner
Executive Vice President of Conway, Inc.

Ron Starner

Ron Starner is Executive Vice President of Conway Data, Inc. He has been with Conway Data for 22 years and serves as a writer and editor for both Site Selection and the company's Custom Content publishing division. His Twitter handle is @RonStarner.

  





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