AUSTIN, Texas – Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Rigoberto ‘Rigo’ Villarreal to the Texas Facilities Commission for a term set to expire on January 31, 2023.

The Commission manages state government buildings and handles the sale of surplus property, including property donated to the state by federal programs.

Villarreal, a native of Mission, Texas, is superintendent of bridges for the City of McAllen. He is also a board member of the Rio Grande Valley Chamber of Commerce, McAllen Chamber of Commerce, and the Border Trade Alliance Executive Board, and a member of the Texas Transportation Commission Border Trade Advisory Committee.

Additionally, he is a former member of the Freight Advisory Committee and the Panama Canal Stakeholder Working Group for the Texas Department of Transportation. Villarreal received a Bachelor of Social Work and a Master of Public Administration from The University of Texas – Pan American.

“I am honored to be appointed to the Texas Facilities Commission,” Villarreal told the Rio Grande Guardian.

The City of McAllen appointed Villarreal superintendent of the McAllen-Hidalgo and Anzalduas International Bridges in October, 2010. There, he oversees the operations of two key bridges for the Rio Grande Valley. The Hidalgo bridge gets the most non-commercial and pedestrian traffic of all the Valley bridges. The Anzalduas bridge is seen as a key artery for maquiladora plants on the western side of Reynosa.

Villarreal has extensive background in public administration, community and public relations, and management of government projects and services.

Villarreal is particularly pleased with the work he and others do on TxDOT’s Border Trade Advisory Committee. The committee’s advice and recommendations provides TxDOT with a broad prospective regarding the effect of transportation choices on border trade in general and on particular communities. As a member of this committee, Villarreal also provides an avenue of interested parties to express opinions with regard to border trade issues.

In 2004 Villarreal was the Public Relations Coordinator for State House Representative Kino Flores, where he served in an advisory capacity, and represented the office at public events when Representative Flores was unavailable, as well as provided input and researched house and senate bills affecting District 36.

Later, in 2007 Villarreal served as Chief of Staff for Hidalgo County Judge J.D. Salinas. He reported directly to the County Judge and served as liaison between the office and its departments as well as other elected officials. He also represented the County Judge in his absence.

Since the late 1980’s, Villarreal has worked on various campaigns ranging from countywide elected office to campaigning for a United States Senator. These elected officials counted on Villarreal’s expertise on campaign finance and fundraising processes.

He was also a major contributor and planner in the negotiations and details of a $40 million border-wall and levee project. As well as contributed extensively on Hidalgo county-wide budget issues and provided input and recommendations for the county’s multi-million dollar budget and budget surplus of $27 million.

Villarreal has also led initiatives that resulted in statewide recognition for hurricane preparedness. Villarreal has been instrumental in establishing seamless and transparent operational and public access for all aspects of the gubernatorial offices through the development and implementation of web-based applications and initiatives.

His previous community and professional experience consists of:

  • Program Administrator for the Office of the Attorney General
  • South Texas Community College Advisory Committee Member
  • Governor Rick Perry Appointee to the Private Prison Oversight Authority Board
  • Previous Hidalgo County Civil Service Commission, Member and Chairperson

After being a migrant farm worker, traveling to Minnesota and Iowa, Villarreal pursued his education at the University of Texas, Pan American where he earned his Bachelor’s of Social Work as well as his Masters in Public Administration in 1994. Villarreal is married and has twins, a boy, David Julian and a girl, Carlette.

Last July, Villarreal sat down with Rio Grande Guardian publisher Mark Hanna for a Facebook livestream to discuss his work as superintendent of bridges for the City of McAllen.

Border Crossings and more. Today we have a conversation with Rigo Villarreal, superintendent of bridges for the City of McAllen TX Government.

Posted by Rio Grande Guardian on Thursday, July 6, 2017