As the newest Chairman of the Texas Water Development Board, Carlos Rubinstein brings a unique mix of scientific and public sector experience.
"I've spent my entire professional career in public service," Rubinstein said.
Born in Mexico City, his family made Brownsville their home when he was 10.
"It was either a small city or a big town, but still you could go around and… anywhere you went in town, you would run into somebody you know,” Rubinstein said.
Immersed in Valley culture, he attended Texas Southmost College and then Pan American University where he found a love for biology.
"Particularly my professor at TSC, made biology a lot of fun for me," Rubinstein said.
After graduation, he became Public Health Director for the City of Brownsville, eventually working his way to city manager.
"You learn how important it is to be responsive to the community,” Rubinstein said. “You also learn to understand where it is they're coming from."
In 1989, he joined the agency that would eventually become the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Ten years later, he was named Watermaster for the Rio Grande Valley, overseeing regional water supplies.
"Better than 95 percent of the users down there depend on that river," Rubinstein said. "Those of us that have grown up on the border, on the fronterra, we recognized the border doesn't divide."
He became deputy executive director for TCEQ in 2008 and this year is Chairman of the Texas Water Development Board. With a deep background in water issues, he comes to a critical leadership position at a critical time.
"As Texas continues to grow, the demands for water will continue to increase,” Rubinstein said. “And we need to do our part in making sure we meet those demands."
He brings a commitment to community and a commitment to the future of Texas.
"It's that critical for all of us -- every drop does count," Rubinstein said.
One of the first challenges for Rubinstein will be the Nov. 5 election, when voters will decide on a state constitutional amendment that would tag $2 billion in new funds for state water development.