The Community Press

Valley native to serve on state’s new broadband board

January 20, 2022
Sergio Contreras

A Rio Grande Valley native has been appointed by Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick to serve on a board that will oversee the state’s broadband efforts and decide which communities qualify for financial assistance.

Sergio Contreras, president and CEO of the Rio Grande Valley Partnership, was appointed to the Broadband Office Board of Advisors, state Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, announced Monday.

Patrick appointed Contreras to the board which was created during this year’s state legislative session through House Bill 5.

The board of advisors falls within the Office of the Comptroller of Public Accounts and will serve to provide guidance to the State Broadband Development Office, which is tasked with creating a long term statewide plan that will address broadband needs and will create an accurate broadband map of areas eligible for financial assistance.

Contreras’ appointment to the board was made possible by Hinojosa who worked with the author of the bill, state Sen. Robert Nichols, to ensure that South Texas was represented on the board by including wording in the bill that requires that one of the appointees be from South Texas.

Hinojosa recommended Contreras to the board.

“I appreciate Lt. Governor Patrick appointing Sergio Contreras to the Broadband Office Board of Advisors,” Hinojosa said in the news release. “I was pleased to recommend Sergio for an appointment to this important position. He is a lifelong resident of the Rio Grande Valley and understands the needs of our communities.”

Hinojosa added that Contreras’ nearly 20 years of working for AT&T familiarized him with broadband issues.

“More importantly, he currently serves as the President/CEO of the Rio Grande Valley Partnership and knows firsthand the challenges our families and businesses face when they lack access to quality high-speed internet,” Hinojosa said. “I am confident Sergio will do a great job in helping lead the expansion of broadband across Texas and in advocating for the needs of our South Texas communities.”

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