Since its inception in 1966, the Houston-Galveston Area Council has grown into one of the largest, most expansive councils of government in the country. This kind of success is not possible without the exceptional talent, dedication, and passion of its people.
Our leadership team reflects who we are as an agency.
They are diverse, talented, flexible, collaborative, engaged, passionate, and most importantly, they are extremely dedicated to the success and development of their teams and to the vitality of the more than 7 million people living and working in this great 13-county region we serve.
Since its inception in 1966, the Houston-Galveston Area Council has grown into one of the largest, most expansive councils of government in the country. This kind of success is not possible without the exceptional talent, dedication, and passion of its people. Our leadership team reflects who we are as an agency. They are diverse, talented, flexible, collaborative, engaged, passionate, and most importantly, they are extremely dedicated to the success and development of their teams and to the vitality of the 7 million people living and working in this great 13-county region we serve.
However, what most impresses me about our leadership is how approachable they are to discussion, ideas, and opportunities to learn and improve. Their integrity, humanity, and humility are apparent in all they do. They invest in their people. They want everyone to succeed.
I encourage all members of our staff to reach out to a member of our leadership team, start a conversation, and make a connection. You may be seeking training and professional development. You may need advice or help with a project. You may be new to our agency and need a guide. You may aspire to be a leader yourself and need a coach. You may have an idea to improve a process, expand a program, or reach a community we’ve overlooked in the past. You may simply want to know more about a department you don’t regularly work with. We want to talk about it. Our door is always open, and we are always willing to listen.
Thank you to all our staff for your engagement and dedication to our mission, the region we serve, and to each other. We are your leadership team. We’re here for you, and we’re here to help.
Chief Operating Officer
Onyinye is the chief operating officer for the Houston-Galveston Area Council. Through strategic leadership and collaboration, she oversees H-GAC’s transportation planning programs, public safety, human services, community planning, procurement and contracts, and our data analytics and research initiatives.
For nearly 20 years, Onyinye has served in key leadership roles at organizations like the New York City Department of Transportation, New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority.
Her leadership expertise spans operational, compliance, grant development, transportation planning and management, new project funding and support, and community development. Onyinye holds an MBA from the Cornell University Johnson School of Business, a master’s degree in corporate communications and integrated marketing from the New York Institute of Technology, and a Bachelor of Science from State University of New York at Old Westbury. She is an inaugural fellow of the New York University Transportation Emerging Fellowship.
Chief Outreach & Government Affairs Officer
Rick is the chief outreach & government affairs officer, leading a team of professionals dedicated to helping our member local governments improve the lives of the people they serve by promoting intergovernmental cooperation, agency transparency, and collaboration through government relations, membership development, and communications.
Rick is the primary liaison between representatives of public and private organizations throughout the region with the goal of enhancing understanding of the functions and service capabilities of the regional council. He is also the public information coordinator and custodian of records for the agency. Rick holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Houston-Downtown.
Chief Financial Officer
Christina is the chief financial officer responsible for H-GAC’s finances and financial reporting. She and her team assess risks and opportunities, and help set and track financial goals, objectives, and budgets.
Christina’s career has been entirely devoted to providing financial oversight and support to public sector organizations primarily in higher education, such as Texas Southern University, University of Houston, Lone Star College, Stafford Municipal School District, and more.
She received her Bachelor of Accounting and Master of Accounting degrees from Florida International University and is a certified public accountant (CPA) in the state of Texas. Christina is also a veteran of the United States Air Force.
In her free time, Christina enjoys spending time with her two teenage children, William and Araceli. Both play in their high school marching band, which keeps her busy during this time of year!
Director, Public Services
Ronnie is the director of public services, leading teams responsible for enterprise, business services, and economic development programs. Ronnie directs teams with Small Business Administration and Economic Development Administration loans, the Economic Development Program, the Energy Purchasing Program, and the HGACBuy Cooperative Purchasing Program.
Ronnie serves as chair for the National Cooperative Purchasing Partners Board of Directors and in leadership roles with several youth sports and faith-based organizations. He is a native Houstonian and studied at the University of Houston.
Director, Data Analytics & Research
Jochen Floesser is the director of data analytics and research. With a master’s degree in geography from Mannheim University in his home country of Germany and a master’s degree in geology from Auburn University, Jochen brings nearly 25 years of experience to the region.
His dynamic expertise and innovative leadership spans the public and private geospatial sectors in the environmental, natural resources, infrastructure, geographic information systems, and remote sensing industries. His true passion comes to life when developing geographic data and analysis and the application of models and maps to extract valuable information that creates a positive impact on people’s lives.
Director, Internal Audit
Charles is the director of internal audit, providing compliance oversight to the agency’s grants and contracts. Before joining the agency, Charles worked as director of internal audit at Grambling State University and earlier as the director of audits for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
Charles has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Houston. He has professional licenses as a Texas Certified Public Accountant, Certified Internal Auditor, and a Chartered Global Management Accountant. In addition, Charles is an ordained Christian minister and has a Master of Divinity from the Houston Graduate School of Theology and a Doctor of Ministry from the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary.
Director, Community and Environmental Planning
Justin is the director of community and environmental planning, where he leads the agency’s natural resources, disaster resilience, community planning, and public safety programs.
Justin holds a master’s degree in urban affairs and public policy from the University of Delaware and has spent over 20 years leading natural resources and urban planning efforts for a variety of local government and non-governmental organizations.
For the past 13 years, Justin has worked at H-GAC to further the agency’s mission to support our local communities in improving water quality, flood resilience, and conservation efforts. Justin has a passion for bringing together partners and resources to enhance our region’s natural and community resilience.
As part of a lifelong love of the natural world, Justin is actively involved in many leadership roles with natural resource and wildlife efforts in the region. Together with his wife and two young daughters, Justin enjoys exploring the diversity of our region’s landscapes, wildlife, and communities.
Director, Procurement and Contracts
Kristina is the director of procurement and contracts, responsible for H-GAC’s purchasing and solicitation processes. Kristina has worked in procurement and contracts for 25 years and holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration Management and a Master of Science in Administration of Justice and Security.
Prior to joining H-GAC eight years ago, she worked as a lead buyer for the City of Houston Police Department in its budget and finance department and strategic procurement department. During her time at H-GAC she has been a trailblazer for furthering the agency’s ability to fairly, transparently, and economically obtain and purchase goods and services totaling more than $40 million each year.
Kristina has a deep desire for making sure our region has the support and resources it needs to thrive and continue to grow. As part of a lifelong love for public service, she is actively involved in many associations and nonprofit organizations.
Kristina is a native Houstonian and enjoys quality time with her husband and three children. And of course, her 7-year-old Yorkshire Terrier, Tinky.
Director, Human Resources
Teri is the director of human resources, responsible for developing recruitment and retention strategies, overseeing major employee operations, and ensuring compliance.
Prior to joining H-GAC, Teri served as the vice president of human resources for Goodwill Industries of Houston. As a member of the executive leadership team there, she managed 15 professionals and launched the organization’s first human resources business partner program. Throughout her career, she has provided her expertise in employee and organizational development in the oil and gas, real estate, technology, and consulting industries.
Teri received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Business Administration degrees from Western Illinois University.
In her free time, Teri enjoys volunteering with various nonprofits including serving as a board member. She also spends time reading, hiking, and traveling.
Jean is the director of finance, supervising $475 million in annual account transactions including accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, and billing. With more than 25 years of experience, Jean continues to oversee the agency’s grant management for its various departments and provides the financial oversight for the agency’s unit corporations like the Corporation for Regional Excellence and the 9-1-1 Emergency Management District. Jean graduated from Stephen F. Austin University with an accounting degree in 1988.
She is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Fraud Examiner. Jean actively participates in the Texas Society of CPAs, National Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, and the Houston Chapter of Fraud Examiners.
Director, Data Services
Tanya is the director of the data services department, responsible for all aspects of managing the organization’s information services including geographic information systems, websites, and SharePoint database administration. She directs technology and network support for the Workforce Solutions offices and oversees the Gulf Coast Regional 9-1-1 Emergency Communications District’s activities.
In 1990, she joined the agency as geographic information systems administrator and has served as the data services director since 2006. Tanya leads the organization’s strategic business decisions with technology architecture, implements information system policies, and develops enterprise standards. Tanya is a graduate of the University of Houston, where she earned a degree in management information systems.
Craig serves as the director of transportation, leading transportation planning efforts for the eight-county Houston-Galveston metropolitan planning area. He guides the Transportation Policy Council to establish future investment priorities and projects that support sustainable growth, increased safety and mobility, enhanced economic vitality, and superior quality of life.
Prior to joining H-GAC, Craig served as director of the metropolitan planning organization for the Las Vegas region where he played a critical role in developing the region’s transportation strategy. He brings more than 20 years of experience in regional transportation planning, land-use planning, and climate and sustainability-related planning. Craig holds a master’s degree in community and regional planning from the University of Texas at Austin and a bachelor’s degree in geography from Kansas State University.
Director, Human Services
Juliet is the director of human services, leading the Gulf Coast Workforce Solutions, the Houston-Galveston Area Agency on Aging, and Aging and Disability Resource Center programs. She also serves as executive director of the Gulf Coast Workforce Board. Before joining H-GAC, Juliet served as the elected trustee of District VII for the Houston I.S.D. School Board and held several officer positions, including board president.
She also was associate director for the Richard Tapia Center for Excellence and Equity in Education at Rice University, where she managed programs to empower underrepresented minorities and women to succeed in STEM fields. Juliet also served as Houston’s first director of education for Mayor Sylvester Turner’s Office of Education, where she developed a systemwide, collaborative approach to education and workforce issues from cradle to career that helped launch numerous city-wide programs, including Hire Houston Youth, “Be Well, Be Connected,” and Out2LearnHOU.