In a move aimed at strengthening regional collaboration and advancing transportation initiatives, the Rio Grande Valley Metropolitan Planning Organization (RGVMPO), at its October 25, 2023, board meeting appointed Brownsville Mayor John Cowen, Jr. as its new Vice Chair.
Mayor Cowen brings to the Vice Chair position a wealth of experience having served the Rio Grande Valley’s largest City previously as its At-Large “A” City Commissioner and as a member of the Border Trade Alliance. Mayor Cowen brings a deep commitment to the advancement of the Rio Grande Valley. In his new role, he will work closely with fellow board members and stakeholders to guide the strategic direction of the RGVMPO, fostering regional collaboration and driving progress on key transportation, bicycling, and pedestrian safety initiatives.
“I am honored to serve as Vice Chair of the RGVMPO Transportation Policy Board,” said Mayor Cowen. “This position offers a unique opportunity to make a lasting impact on our region’s transportation infrastructure, and I am committed to working collaboratively with all our partners to ensure the Rio Grande Valley continues to move forward. Together, we will tackle the challenges and seize the opportunities ahead, driving progress and prosperity for all our communities.”
Mayor Cowen acknowledges and thanks outgoing RGVMPO Chair, Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino, Jr. for his leadership, dedication, and contributions to the RGVMPO. Judge Trevino was appointed October 2021 to the post.
The RGVMPO plays a crucial role in shaping the future of transportation, bicycling, and pedestrian safety in the Rio Grande Valley, ensuring that federal and state funds are effectively allocated to critical local, projects. As a federally mandated body, the MPO works diligently to prioritize and address the unique transportation needs of our communities.
The Transportation Policy Board, comprising representatives from the cities of Brownsville, Harlingen, San Benito, McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, and Pharr; the counties of Cameron and Hidalgo; the Cameron County Regional Mobility Authority, Hidalgo County Regional Mobility Authority, Valley Metro, and the Texas Department of Transportation, functions as the decision-making entity of the RGVMPO. The Board’s diverse representation ensures a comprehensive and inclusive approach to regional transportation planning.
The appointment of Mayor Cowen as Vice Chair supports a continued partnership between cities of the Rio Grande Valley, which continues benefiting from his leadership and expertise as they work together to shape a brighter, more connected future for the South Texas. Once this appointment is completed, Mayor Cowen will then serve the RGVMPO as Chair of the MPO.