Tue, Nov 28, 2023

Tres Lagos, McAllen, Texas

Welcome from the President

On behalf of the McAllen Economic Development team, I would like to welcome you to the McAllen, Texas/Reynosa, Mexico international metro area. Representing the economic interests and job creation efforts of over 2.5 million residents on an international border can sometimes be challenging - but in all cases very rewarding.

The location advantages we offer are globally unique. What other location can offer your company the ability to take advantage of the best of two workforces, two legal systems, two sets of trade policies and agreements, two currencies, and the ability to manufacture products made in the United States or Mexico with one management team?

It is not just our location that makes us an attractive option for your next business expansion. When you look at the two most important factors impacting your business success: cost and availability of a skilled and trainable workforce, we really shine.

With a current labor force of over 1.02 million, a manufacturing labor force of over 136,000,a median age of 29 years and an annual population growth rate of between 1% and 2%, labor availability will not be an issue. As you look for skilled labor and skills training, we continuously have a future workforce (K-12) of over 200,000, and over 62,000 students enrolled in University, Community College and Technical programs in the metro area. Many are certified by National or International Academic, Trade and Industrial Organizations.

As you look at operating costs, McAllen is consistently ranked as having one of the lowest costs-of-living in the United States, and in the latest Boston Consulting Group Manufacturing Cost-Competitiveness Index, Mexico continues to have one of the most competitive manufacturing bases in the world.

Add to the lower cost structure, the benefits of Mexico's trade agreements with approximately 45 nations; an extremely strong work ethic and our international location can provide your company with operational flexibility and opportunity for long-term success few other locations can offer.

If the McAllen /Reynosa International metro looks as good to you as it has for the hundreds of international companies that have relocated or expanded here, let us help you take a closer look.

The McAllen Economic Development Corporation has a highly-qualified staff ready to answer your questions. They will be happy to coordinate local meetings with other managers to learn firsthand the unique advantages of doing business on an international border.

We understand your need for candid, accurate information. If you are looking for options or strategic advantage contact us!

Keith Patridge

President and CEO

Our Staff

Keith Patridge

President & CEO

Keith Patridge joined the McAllen Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) in 1988 and has served as president and CEO since 2007. In this capacity, he is responsible for advancing the diversification and growth of the McAllen region through partnerships and market strategies. With his experience in business development, sales, operations and manufacturing management, Mr. Patridge provides a unique insight into the elements required to successfully start up and prosper with new operations in a border location. Mr. Patridge is an alumnus of Missouri Western State University and received his Juris Doctorate at University of Missouri- Kansas City. He serves on many community boards including: Rio South Texas Economic Council (RSTEC), Fundación México Estados Unidos para la Ciencia (FUMEC), COSTEP, and the McAllen Industrial Foundation.

Mark Garcia

Executive Vice President

Mr. Garcia joined the organization in 2001 as Director of Operations then as Vice President of the McAllen Foreign Trade Zone Inc. As Executive Vice President, Mr. Garcia is responsible for implementing and leading the overall strategy designed to accomplish the organization’s mission of creating and executing programs that drive business, launch growth and expansion, employment retention and attraction, and capital investment in the community. Mr. Garcia is an alumnus of the University of Texas Pan American where he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. Mr. Garcia also holds certificates from the University of Denver in Intermodal Freight Transportation and Public Planning, and an Advanced Certificate in Distribution, Logistics and Supply Chain Management from Ohio State University. Mr. Garcia is a licensed Real Estate Agent, and a member of the Institute of Management Accountants. Mark serves on several boards including the South Texas College Bachelor programs in Organizational Leadership, Technology Management, and the Medical and Health Management Services.

Ralph Garcia

Vice President of International Business Recruitment

Ralph Garcia is the Vice President of International Business Recruitment at the McAllen Economic Development Corporation. Mr. Garcia has been in the organization for the past twenty-two years assisting investment requirements for many multinational companies wanting to locate their manufacturing facilities along the United States/Mexico border.

Through his role, Mr. Garcia maintains a strong international relationship with key government officials to attract new investment wanting to develop or expand their manufacturing base in North America. Mr. Garcia is also actively involved in bi-national retention and expansion of existing businesses, through the development and improvement of infrastructure, education, supply chain, and workforce development.

Being part of one of the most recognized economic development organizations along the United States/Mexico border, Mr. Garcia is dedicated to understanding his customer’s needs and identifying cost competitive solutions that will help them make the best possible long term investment. During his tenure, Mr. Garcia has had the privilege of working with several global companies that have successfully moved or expanded their business in McAllen, Texas or Reynosa, Tamaulipas.

Susie Flores

Director of U.S. Business Recruitment

Susie Flores joined the MEDC team in 2001 and has worked in many capacities during her tenure with MEDC. She became the Research and Data Coordinator in 2008 where she supports business operations by researching and providing key community data for the McAllen region. Susie is an alumna of South Texas College where she holds a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership.

Michael R Luna

Systems Administrator

Michael Luna joined the MEDC team in 2014 as the Systems Administrator. In his role he oversees the installation and maintenance of equipment and networks and performs system administration of servers and computers. He has also obtained his Remote Pilot's license and contributes aerial photography for our social media and website as well as other marketing content. Mr. Luna continues to ensure that the McAllen EDC team is kept up to date with technology in the office.

Gricelda Merle

Marketing and Research Coordinator

Gricelda Merle joined the MEDC team in 2018 and has since transitioned to her current position as Marketing and Research Coordinator. She skillfully manages all of our Social Media campaigns including but not limited to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn as well as contributing her photography expertise, creativity and the designs and promotions of the McAllen EDC. Additionally, she is responsible for updating and verifying all data pertaining to McAllen and the metropolitan statistical area. Mrs. Merle is fluent in five languages; a quick learner and approaches tasks with ingenuity and inspiration.