BOARD OF DIRECTORS


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.

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Berdon Lawrence

Chairman


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.

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W.W. "Whit" Jones III

President


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...

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Eric Opiela

Vice President


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.

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Robin Borglum Kennedy

Secretary


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...

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Mark Alvarenga

Treasurer


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.

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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.

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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...

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Othal E. Brand, Jr.


Businessman and elected official, Othal E Brand, Jr. has lived in McAllen, in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas for over 64 years. He graduated from Texas Christian University in 1976. Mr. Brand worked for the family business, Griffin & Brand and Trophy International ...

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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.

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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...

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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...

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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.

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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.

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Gail Hoffman


Gail Hoffman, along with her husband, Bruce, has been a member of STPRA since its inception. She and Bruce have distinguished themselves with many years of service to our organization that have included hosting gatherings, helping our staff ...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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