New Leadership on the EDC Board of Weslaco


Texas Border Business

The Board of Directors of the Economic Development Corporation of Weslaco, unanimously elected Joe Daniel Olivarez to represent the board as president.  Olivarez had previously held the position of vice president after completing 5 years on the EDC board.  During his term, Olivarez has been instrumental in growing Weslaco’s retail industry, but he says his proudest moments came with his involvement in the announcement of UTRGV’s Center for Innovation and Commercialization (CIC) to be completed in June 2018.

On the heels of the UTRGV-CIC is Robert C. Vackar, College of Business & Entrepreneurship’s future plans to relocate their doctoral program and student housing in the downtown area in the city of Weslaco. Olivarez believes it will reinforce the city’s strong hold on education, joining STC, the largest off-site campus in the Valley, and Texas A & M’s Engineering and Research program.

“We are the education capital in the Mid-Valley,” says Olivarez, “Together with the Weslaco Independent School District, we will ultimately change the dynamics of the community and instill a love of learning in our youth.”

Olivarez works with the family business, L.C. Olivarez & Company, LNR Apartments.  He also runs his own business, Olivarez Organization, in apartments, construction, and subdivisions.  Olivarez has worked alongside previous EDC executive directors, Hernan Gonzalez and Joey Trevino.  In the past 5 years, Olivarez says he has learned from the previous directors and former president, Richard Talbert.

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In working with previous and current EDC executives, Olivarez says the board’s advice is simple, “If the EDC does well, the community will thrive and families will succeed.  Our goal is to create jobs and increase sales tax revenue.” Weslaco’s sales tax has consistently been above average when compared to other cities in the Valley, increasing by an average of over 2% a year.

Another action taken by the board on November 15th, was naming attorney, Diana Fuentes Aguilar as vice president.  Aguilar practices law with an office in Weslaco and joined the board in 2015.  She maintains a fundamental obligation to serve her community and believes that the commitment to improving the quality of life in Weslaco is though involvement.

Executive Director, Marie McDermott has welcomed the opportunity to learn and  cultivate a more flourishing economy from the naming of Olivarez and Aguilar as newly elected leaders and extends a heard felt level of gratitude to the previous EDC president, attorney Richard Talbert for serving honorably for three years.  He will remain as a member of the EDC board.  Talbert was recently named “Man of the Year” by the Weslaco Chamber of Commerce and continues his work at the national level for the Lions Club.

CPA, Stephen Charlton remains as EDC Board Treasurer and Insurance agent, Cynthia Cabaza also continues as EDC Board Secretary. TBB