Our Board of Directors is comprised of landowners who directly deal with all the issues of land ownership on a daily basis and have a vested interest in protecting their own lands and homes as well as those of all our members. They meet each quarter to discuss, update, and highlight the most pressing issues in order to keep our members informed and up to date on current issues regarding the legislature and private land ownership.

Walter Negley

Chairman Emeritus

Walter Negley, STPRA founding board chairman, is president of two heavy industrial product manufacturing concerns based in Houston, Texas. Other business affiliations include past board member of Highland Resources, a family owned real estate company founded by Herman and George R. Brown, and the A. S. Gage Ranch, founded by family members in Brewster and Presidio Counties in West Texas in 1883.


Eduardo Hinojosa

Director Emeritus

Eduardo Hinojosa comes from a three-generation ranching family. Eduardo took over the family ranching operation in 1953 after the death of his father. He leased approximately 12,000 acres from La Brisa Land and Cattle Company in Starr County from 1953-1960. In late 1960 moved cattle operation to Rancho La-Fe in Jim Hogg County where he and family continue with cattle raising and white tail deer/quail management.


Berdon Lawrence


Berdon Lawrence is President of L3 Partners, LLC, which manages the assets and investments of his family. He is Chairman Emeritus of Kirby Corporation, a tank barge company moving petrochemicals and petroleum products on the inland waterways. Kirby operates 900 tank barges and 200 towboats, and provides employment for over 3,100 people. Kirby Corporation is headquartered in Houston.


Mauro R. Garcia Jr.


Pharmacist, Oil/Gas Investments and Oil/Gas Development, Real Estate Investments

Mr. Garcia's family has been ranching in south Texas since the 1750’s. He was a graduate of Falfurrias High School ‘62 and graduated from the University of Texas ’67 BS in Pharmacy.


Sylvia Chavez

Vice President

Sylvia Chavez is third generation owner of Tacubaya Ranch located in Southern Brooks County. Sylvia was born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley. She lived in Austin, Texas for over 25 years until she returned to the Valley. Sylvia became the owner of Tacubaya Ranch...


Bruce P. Hoffman


Bruce Hoffman has been in the banking and investment business since graduating from the University of Texas at Austin in 1972. He grew up in Alice and spent much time on his family’s ranches located in Duval and Jim Wells counties. He is proud...


W.W. "Whit" Jones III


A South Texas native, Whit currently helps operate his families ranch in Jim Hogg County. Whit serves as a director of the First National Bank of Hebbronville, is on the Appraisal Review Board for Jim Hogg County...


Mark Alvarenga

Mark Alvarenga, an Arlington, TX native, has been with IBC-Zapata for 11 years after graduating from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio with a B.S. degree in Business. In 2005, he was hired as an Operations Coordinator for IBC and has since been promoted to Corporate Sales Manager and is also the 1st Vice President of Sales.


Frank Armstrong

Frank Armstrong was born in Laredo, Texas and raised in Hebbronville. A fifth generation Texan he obtained both a Master of Science in Petroleum Engineering and a Bachelor of Laws degrees from The University of Texas.


Giovana Benitez

Giovana Benitez grew up around a family owned stocker and pre conditioning yard in Edinburg, Texas. She has been actively involved in the management of the operation since 2011. Giovana has participated and volunteered in several...


Alice East

She is a rancher born to Tom & Evelyn East in Laredo, Texas. She now resides in Linn, Texas.


Ann Gibbs

Ann Gibbs is co-owner and operator of San Pablito Ranch in Jim Hogg County. Born in Waco, Ann earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, where she taught high school Biology...


James "Jim" Gibbs

James Gibbs, currently the owner and operator of San Pablito Ranch in Jim Hogg County, brings a wealth of business and ranching experience to the STPRA board of directors. Prior to his 18 years as chairman and CEO of Frontier Oil...


Richard L. Guerra

Richard Guerra, a native of South Texas and McAllen, TX resident, is a long time member of STPRA, having joined the organization in 2008. Richard a retiree of TxDOT, currently manages his ranch in Roma, TX.


William T. "Billy" Guerra

Billy Guerra, a native of Roma, TX, currently helps operate the family ranch in Starr County. Prior to returning to the ranch, he was in the automotive industry for over 25 years.


Robin Borglum Kennedy

Robin Borglum Kennedy is proud to be part of a pioneer South Texas ranching family. She and her immediate family, through La Rucia Ranch Company, have ranched in Brooks and Hidalgo County...


Beth Knolle-Naiser

Beth Knolle Naiser is part of a family which has ranched in Texas since its members arrived with Stephen F. Austin’s first colony. Beth grew up in Houston, where her father was manager of the Houston Livestock Show...


Eric Opiela

Eric Opiela is a 5th generation Texan, rancher and attorney. He currently chairs STPRA’s Eminent Domain Subcommittee and has worked to implement our legislative agenda for the past two legislative sessions.


Joseph "Joe" F. Phillips

Joe, a sixth generation Texan, was born in McAllen, Texas and attended Texas public schools. Joe is a 1972 graduate of the University of Texas, where he received a Bachelor of Journalism...


Ellen Randall

Ellen Randall has served on the boards and advisory councils for various organizations, including the Texas Parks and Wildlife Game Bird Advisory Board, Nature Conservancy Advisory Council, St. Elizabeth’s...


Neal Wilkins, Ph. D.

Neal Wilkins is President and CEO of the East Foundation, where he is responsible for leading the Foundation’s mission of supporting wildlife conservation and other public benefits of ranching and private land...