Author Archives: Anabel Aranda-Saenz

15 ODD QUESTIONS WITH CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD

Larry Delgado co-owner, house.wine. & bistro. and Salt-New American Table   1) What item would you not travel without? There are quite a few that are on my checklist. But the one I would never travel without is my wife. I wouldn’t know where to go, what to do next, where the good places to eat are if Jessica hadn’t planned them out before we left.  2) What is your greatest passion? If you ask me today, that has to be my children. The old cliché that your life turns upside down when kids come is true. I often was critical of my friends who said things like that, and lo and behold, it happened to me. It certainly changed my perspective on everything. 3) Where do you go for your favorite meal? Ahhh…food, my other passion! At one point it might have been the greatest, but it’s been superceded by my…

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PEOPLE YOU SHOULD KNOW – HORACIO REPETTO

Horacio Repetto, General Manager, GE Aviation   When people see the name GE, the first thing which comes to mind is typically appliances – washers, or refrigerators –  none of which will be found in this GE plant. With a motto of “Invent the Future of Flight, Lift People Up and Fly Them Home Safely,” it’s not hard to determine that this plant is all about jet engines. Manufacturing each part, and having the capacity to fix any jet engine, has made GE Aviation the largest manufacturer on this side of the border in the Rio Grande Valley. “‘Fly Them Home Safely’ is what all 550 of our employees live by,” said Horacio Repetto, General Manager of GE Aviation. “When we’re working on a part and ship it out of here to go back into an engine, it has to be perfect. We take a lot of pride to  ensure our…

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MEET YOUR AMBASSADOR – GINA CRUZ

Co-owner of Minuteman Press What does a 26-year banking executive from First Community Bank, who was promoted to vice-president during her 15 years as the Bank Secrecy Act Anti-Money Laundering officer, do when she’s ready to move on? She finds a franchise she’d like to own, of course. Gina Cruz, co-owner with her husband of the Minuteman Press McAllen franchise, went to Farmingdale, New York last year for two weeks of intensive training.  “We learned the basics of how to operate and manage a professional printing company,” Cruz explained. “Minuteman Press is a full service printing and marketing design company offering competitive pricing and such services as advertising, printing, direct mail, and promotional items. Additionally, we offer in-house sublimation for local customers not wanting dozens of items.” “It was different at first, but now I enjoy talking to people,” she said.  Becoming involved in chambers around the Valley and as…

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HOTELS AND HOSPITALITY: A FAMILY TRADITION

Barry R Patel Perspective Hospitality LLC Making people feel welcome, comfortable, and content is the name of the game for Perspective Hospitality, LLC president Barry R. Patel, and his team. Honing his customer service skills has truly been a life long endeavor. Growing up with his family in Zambia, where his father owned retail stores, Patel, at 16, and his five siblings, were sent to the United Kingdom for their education. He chose to become a pharmacist, and received his degree from the University of Bradford in Yorkshire. “I actually wanted to become a physician but, as a foreign exchange student, competition to get into medical schools in England was hard,” Patel said. “I did love pharmacy, however.” Since the U.S. did not recognize degrees from abroad, Patel obtained a second degree in pharmacy in Oklahoma when they moved to the states, then worked with the Revco Drug Store in…

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BUSINESS YOU SHOULD KNOW – SPAWGLASS

Providing the best construction experience is what SpawGlass strives to deliver. What else can be said of a company that builds complicated, large construction projects such as performing arts centers and convention centers (McAllen’s, for one), parking garages, academic facilities, airport renovations, and healthcare renovations for buildings such as the McAllen Medical Center. The company also has a building service group for small, fast-paced projects, as well as a civil division, with the vast majority of its work done for repeat clients. Back in 1953, Louis Spaw and T. Frank Glass decided to start  their own construction company. They built it to an international enterprise with Mr. Spaw’s trademark saying, “We don’t just build buildings, we build people.” Today the company is 100 percent employee-owned, with its ownership open to all employees.  “Nearly 400 shareholders of our 725 team members in our ten branches across Texas are shareholders,” Eric Kennedy,…

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MEET YOUR AMBASSADOR – KIMBERLY BARBOZA

Lift Your Spirits Balloon Decorators Kim Barboza, creative designer, sales manager, and partner for Lift Your Spirts, finds that themes are the magic behind their balloon creations. “I love working with themes,” said Barboza. “I can do anything with themes. I love it most when my mother and I put an event together and the client and their kids walk in and say, ‘Oh, Wow!’ It’s that ‘Wow Moment’ I love!” A wife and mother of two, it took moving to the Valley for this California girl born and raised, to find true love and discover her creative spirit in her mother’s company, coming on board full-time two years ago. Attending worldwide conventions and seminars in their quest to learn about new balloon products and new trends, they bring that knowledge back to the Valley to share. Being involved as an ambassador has meant new friendships, business, and opportunities for…

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