Christie’s Jersey delegation for Mexico trip

Governor Christie will travel to Mexico for what the front office describes as a trade mission from September 3-5.

The following group of business and community leaders will join him…

·         Greg Brown, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Motorola Solutions Inc; Chair of Board of Governors, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

·         Laurence M. Downes, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, New Jersey Resources; Director, Choose New Jersey, Inc. Board

·         Ralph Izzo, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Public Service Enterprise Group, Inc.

·         Clifford Sobel, Valor Capital Group

·         Leo Cervantes, Owner, Chilango Restaurant

·         Pedro Matar, Owner, El Aguila Restaurants in NY and NJ

·         Al Zapanta, President & CEO, the United States–Mexico Chamber of Commerce

·         Mauricio Doehner, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Enterprise Risk Management, CEMEX

·         Rev. Fermin Garcia, President, NHCLC/CONELA Mexico

·         Martin Perez, President, Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey

·         Raul Rendon Ponce, Founder and Director of Bioplastic Solutions

·         Rich Bagger, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Market Access, Celgene Corporation

·         Robert Grady, Managing Director, Cheyenne Capital Fund

·         Michele Brown, Chief Executive Officer, New Jersey Economic Development Authority

·         Tracye McDaniel, President and CEO, Choose New Jersey, Inc.

 

Governor Christie will also be joined by Ambassador Sandra Fuentes and many of the events will be attended by U.S. Ambassador Tony Wayne.

 

Bios for the Delegation members:

 

Greg Brown, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Motorola Solutions Inc; Chair of Board of Governors, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

 

Greg Brown is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Motorola Solutions, Inc. He joined Motorola in January 2003 and was elected to the company’s Board of Directors in 2007. He became CEO of Motorola in January 2008 and led the successful spin-off of the consumer-focused Motorola Mobility in 2011. Prior to joining Motorola, he was Chairman and CEO of Micromuse Inc. from 1999 to 2003. Brown serves as Deputy Chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Business Roundtable.  Additionally, Brown is a board member of Northwestern Memorial Hospital, the Big Shoulders Fund, the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago, World Business Chicago, the Economic Club of Chicago and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Rutgers University, and also serves as chair of the university’s Board of Governors.

 

Laurence M. Downes, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, New Jersey Resources; Director, Choose New Jersey, Inc. Board

 

Laurence M. Downes is Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of New Jersey Resources (NJR), and its principal subsidiary, New Jersey Natural Gas Company (NJNG).  Mr. Downes joined NJR in March 1985 and has served as CEO since July 1995. He is a director and past chairman of the American Gas Association and the Natural Gas Council, as well as a trustee of the American Gas Foundation. Mr. Downes also chairs the Finance Council of the Catholic Diocese of Trenton, and serves as a member of the boards of the new Jersey Economic Development Authority, Choose New Jersey and the Drumthwacket Foundation. Additionally, he is a member of the board of Questar Corporation.    A graduate of Iona College, Mr. Downes holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration in finance and a master’s degree in business administration in financial management.

 

Ralph Izzo, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Public Service Enterprise Group, Inc.

 

Ralph Izzo was elected chairman and chief executive officer of Public Service Enterprise Group Incorporated (PSEG) in April 2007. He was named as the company’s president and chief operating officer and a member of the board of directors of PSEG in October 2006. Previously, Mr. Izzo was president and chief operating officer of Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G).  Since joining PSE&G in 1992 Mr. Izzo was elected to several executive positions within PSEG’s family of companies, including PSE&G senior vice president  utility operations, PSE&G vice president –   appliance service, PSEG vice president – corporate planning, and PSE&G vice president – electric ventures. In these capacities he broadened his experience in the areas of general management, strategic planning and finance.  Mr. Izzo is a well-known leader within the utility industry, as well as the public policy arena. He is frequently asked to testify before Congress and speak to organizations on matters pertaining to national energy policy. Mr. Izzo serves as chair of the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, and on the Rutgers University Board of Governors, the board of directors for The Williams Companies, the New Jersey Utilities Association, the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI), the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASA), and The Center for Energy Workforce Development. He is also a member of the Columbia University School of Engineering Board of Visitors and the Princeton University Adlinger Center for Energy and the Environment Advisory Council, as well as a member of the Visiting Committee for the Department of Nuclear Engineering at MIT.

 

Clifford Sobel, Valor Capital Group

 

Clifford Sobel is presently managing partner of Valor Capital Group, which is a diversified investment group investing in Brazil. He served as U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands from 2001 until 2005 and U.S. ambassador to Brazil from July 2006 until August 2009. Sobel serves on advisory boards to the American Military Commander of Europe and NATO, as well as the Command for American Forces for Central and South America. He has also joined the board of directors for Diamond Offshore Drilling (DO) and serves on the board of Council of the Americas and Christie’s advisory board for the Americas. He also serves on the business advisory board to Fundacao Dom Cabral Brazil (FDC), which is a leading school for executive educational programs.

 

Leo Cervantes, Owner, Chilango Restaurant

 

Leo Cervantes is the owner of Chilango, an authentic Mexican restaurant and bar.  He also joined the private company Seastreak boat to open a Tiki Bar that will give life to a part of the Beach Highlands, which seats 2,500 people.  Cervantes has received recognition and full articles in major newspapers such as The New York Times and won the America’s Most Prestigious Guide to Dinning ZAGAT SURVEY award for five consecutive years and the first prize of the 2nd annual Battle of the chefs Six Flags Great Adventure in 2011.

 

Pedro Matar, Owner, El Aguila Restaurants in NY and NJ

 

Pedro Matar is one of six co-owners of El Aguila and president of El Barrio Mexican Chamber of Commerce.

 

Al Zapanta, President & CEO, the United States–Mexico Chamber of Commerce

 

Al Zapanta was born in Los Angeles, Calif., and attended local schools and college in the Los Angeles area. He received an Associate of Arts from East Los Angeles College, a Bachelor of Arts in Industrial Psychology, a Master of Arts in Public Administration and completed course work for his Ph.D. in International Political Economics from the University of Southern California. He graduated from the Harvard Graduate School of Business and the Inter-American Defense College, the National War College, in Washington, D.C. He speaks Spanish fluently and has an elementary knowledge of French. In the private sector, he worked as an industrial engineer for Bethlehem Steel, and as Director of Governmental Affairs for ARCO until his retirement in 1993 after 18 years of service as a senior executive. During his time with ARCO, Al was responsible for negotiations with Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) on oil and gas matters and the copper mines owned by Anaconda, an acquisition of ARCO. He was also the company’s representative to local, state and federal governments on oil and gas legislation, environmental regulation, transportation-related issues (pipelines, ocean tankers, tanker trucks and rail tank cars) and public affairs. Presently, Al is the President and CEO of the United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce and is responsible for operations in eight regional offices in the United States and nine in Mexico.

 

Mauricio Doehner, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Enterprise Risk Management, CEMEX

 

Mauricio Doehner joined CEMEX in 1996 and has held several executive positions in areas such as Strategic Planning and Enterprise Risk Management for Europe, Asia, the Middle East, South America and Mexico. He is currently in charge of Corporate Affairs and Enterprise Risk Management. Mauricio has also worked in the public sector within the Mexican Presidency. Mauricio earned his BA in Economics from Tecnologico de Monterrey and has an MBA from IESE/IPADE. He also has a Professional Certification in Competitive Intelligence from the FULD Academy of Competitive Intelligence in Boston, Massachusetts.

 

Rev. Fermin Garcia, President, NHCLC/CONELA Mexico

 

Fermin Garcia is pastor at Unity Church Group in Tijuana, in Mexico; NHCLC director; activist; entrepreneur; and director of INSTE Mexico. Garcia has had tremendous Christian ministry success in Mexico. A native of San Antonio, Texas, Garcia is an activist against pornography and has served as the senior pastor of Grupo Unidad Cristiana de Mexico (Christian Unity Group of Mexico) since 2006.  With an active membership of 7,000-plus, Grupo Unidad has become one of the most influential representations of the evangelical movement in North West Mexico. Garcia has been also instrumental in promoting the first anti-porn law in the state of Sinaloa, Mexico and is now working at the federal level to make it nationwide. He also serves as national director of INSTE Bible College, a distance education program.

 

Martin Perez, President, Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey

 

Martin Perez currently serves as the President of the Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey, a statewide umbrella Latino advocacy organization. In May 2011, he was appointed by Governor Christie to the Rutgers University Board of Governors, the first Hispanic appointment by a governor. He previously served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Hispanic Council for Reform and Educational Options (HCREO) and Excellent Education for Everyone. Perez graduated from Seton Hall University with a masters degree in secondary education and Rutgers University Law School with a juris doctor degree.

 

Raul Rendon Ponce, Founder and Director of Bioplastic Solutions

 

Raul Rendon Ponce is the Founder and Director of Bioplastic Solutions. He received his MBA on International Executive Management at Universidad Iberoamericana. He also earned his General Management Certificate at Harvard Business School and is an active member of the National Committee of Grupo Unidad Cristiana, in Tijuana Mexico. Ponce also serves as a member of the NHCLC Mexico and Administrative External Consultant of the Orphanage “Casa de la Esperanza” in Tijuana, Mexico.

 

Rich Bagger, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Market Access, Celgene Corporation

 

Rich Bagger is senior vice president of corporate affairs and market access for Celgene Corporation, a multinational biopharmaceutical company focusing on the discovery, development and commercialization of treatments for cancer and severe, immune-inflammatory conditions.  A member of Celgene’s management committee, Rich is responsible for advancing patient access to Celgene therapies and driving recognition of the value of Celgene innovation through government relations, public policy, communications, patient advocacy and market access activities around the world. Rich most recently served for two years as chief of staff for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, responsible for managing implementation of the governor’s policy agenda and priorities. After leaving state government, Rich was appointed by Governor Christie to be a Commissioner of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, where he serves as Chairman of the Finance Committee.  Previously, Rich was employed by Pfizer Inc. From 2006 to 2009, he served on Pfizer’s senior most management team as Senior Vice President, worldwide public affairs and policy. He received an A.B. degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and a J.D. degree from Rutgers University Law School.

 

Robert Grady, Managing Director, Cheyenne Capital Fund

 

Robert Grady joined Cheyenne Capital in 2009. He is based in Jackson, Wyoming. Mr. Grady also serves as Chairman of the New Jersey State Investment Council, which oversees the state’s $73 billion pension system. Prior to joining Cheyenne Capital, Mr. Grady was a Partner and member of the Management Committee at The Carlyle Group for nine years. At Carlyle, he served as the global coordinator of venture and growth capital (which had $5 billion in assets under management), Chairman and Fund Head of Carlyle Venture Partners I, II, and III; on the investment committees of Carlyle Venture Partners, Carlyle Asia Growth Partners, and Carlyle Europe Technology Partners; and as a Director of multiple Carlyle portfolio companies. Mr. Grady also served as a Director and was Chairman in 2006-2007 of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA). Mr. Grady received an A.B. from Harvard College, and a M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he later served on the faculty from 1993-2004 as a Lecturer in Public Management.

 

Michele Brown, Chief Executive Officer, New Jersey Economic Development Authority

 

Michele Brown was appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) in October 2012 following a distinguished legal career as a federal prosecutor and as Acting First Assistant US Attorney, District of New Jersey. During her tenure as a prosecutor, she specialized in white collar crimes and as Acting First Assistant US Attorney she was responsible for the management and operation of a 300 employee office and at different times, held direct supervisory responsibility for each of the major prosecuting divisions. Prior to becoming the CEO of the EDA, Ms. Brown served as Appointments Counsel for Governor Christie. In this senior staff position, she provided strategic and legal guidance to the Governor and Cabinet and worked closely with the Legislature to fill key posts, including Cabinet level, senior executives, judicial and prosecutorial nominees, and volunteer board, commission and authority members.  Ms. Brown, a native of Trenton, N.J., earned her law degree, magna cum laude, from Georgetown University Law Center. She received a B.A. degree, also magna cum laude, from Drew University. Her outstanding contributions in the legal arena were recognized by the President’s Council on Integrity and Efficiency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

 

Tracye McDaniel, President and CEO, Choose New Jersey, Inc.

 

Tracye McDaniel is the Founding President and Chief Executive Officer of Choose New Jersey, Inc., an independently funded and operated 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, whose mission is to encourage and nurture economic growth throughout the state of New Jersey – including a focus on making New Jersey’s most distressed cities engines for growth and opportunity.  Choose New Jersey leads global promotion, lead generation and project management for economic growth and job creation in the Garden State and is part of the state’s award-winning economic development organization: The New Jersey Partnership for Action (PFA). Ms. McDaniel has more than 29 years of state and regional level experience as a widely recognized strategist in all facets of economic development, including public relations, tourism and international business development. She has led successful economic development organizations in Texas. In 2007, Ms. McDaniel served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Greater Houston Partnership (GHP), Houston, TX, regarded as a top global location for business. McDaniel has been appointed by Governor Chris Christie to both the Council on Innovation and the New Jersey Military installation Growth and Development Task Force. A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Ms. McDaniel is also a Ford Foundation Regional Sustainable Development (RSD) Fellow, a program of American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE).

 

 

 

Christie’s Jersey delegation for Mexico trip