First Hispanic woman to serve as Chair of the Texas A&M System Board of Regents

The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents on Friday elected Elaine Mendoza ’87 to serve as board chairman and chose Tim Leach ’82 as vice chairman. The board also welcomed three new Regents.

Mendoza is the second woman and the first Hispanic to serve as Chairman of the Board of Regents for the Texas A&M System.

“Elaine Mendoza is a distinguished alumna of Texas A&M whose professional achievements in science and healthcare, as well as her service to her community, truly embody what it means to be an Aggie,” said Governor Greg Abbott. “I extend my congratulations to Elaine, applaud the Board of Regents on their decision, and I look forward to continuing to work together to take Texas’ higher education system to even greater heights.”

Mendoza is founder, president, and CEO of Conceptual MindWorks Inc., a biotechnology and medical informatics company in San Antonio. She was first appointed to the Board of Regents by Governor Rick Perry ’72 in 2011 and reappointed by Gov. Greg Abbott in 2017. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University.

Mendoza, whose term as a Regent expires 2023, was elected to a two-year term as chairman, replacing former Chairman Charles W. Schwartz.

“I am grateful to Governor Abbott for my reappointment to the board in 2017 and am most appreciative of my colleagues for their support and vote of confidence,” Chairman Mendoza said. “Serving the Texas A&M System as a Regent is an honor and a great responsibility. I know our Board will continue the legacy of always putting the interest of our students, faculty and the state of Texas first.”

Leach of Midland, who holds a Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Master of Business Administration from The University of Texas of the Permian Basin, has been Chairman and CEO of Concho Resources Inc. since it was formed in 2004. He was appointed as a member of the Board of Regents by Governor Greg Abbott in 2017.

The board also welcomed new Regents who are taking the place of Schwartz, Tony Buzbee and Morris Foster.

Appointed by Governor Abbott and confirmed by the Texas Senate, the new regents are Jay Graham, Mike Hernandez and Michael J. Plank. Their terms are set to expire on Feb. 1, 2025.

Jay Graham of Houston is chairman and CEO of Spur Energy Partners.

Mike Hernandez of Fort Worth is owner and CEO of D&M Leasing, and owner and dealer principal of Four Stars Ford, Four Stars Chevrolet Buick, Four Stars Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram, and Four Stars Toyota.

Michael J. Plank of Houston is chairman and CEO of The Plank Companies, Inc. and three affiliated companies; National Property Holdings, Rail Logix and Speed Shore Corporation.

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $4.7 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities and seven state agencies, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.