Ronnie Volkening has served as the President and CEO of the Texas Retailers Association since October, 2007. He returned to Austin in 2007 after residing in Plano, Texas for 20 years, during which time he first managed state government affairs for Frito-Lay and later served as Senior Director of Government Affairs for 7-Eleven for 15 years.
Mr. Volkening is a Texas native, spending his formative years in Lake Jackson. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, as are both his two children, and he received his Juris Doctor from the University of Houston. Early in his career, Ronnie was engaged in government affairs representation on behalf of several state associations, including the Texas Automobile Dealers Association, the Texas Medical Association, and the Texas Association of Business.
Joe Williams- Vice President Regulatory and Member Services (936) 258-3414 or (832) 577-4227
Joe Williams is the Vice President Regulatory and Member Services of the Texas Retailers Association following the merger (2006) of Gulf Coast Retailers and Texas Retailers Association. He is also the main contact for the Texas Food Council. A graduate of Texas Tech University (BBA, 1971), Joe has worked in the association community for many years, serving as President of the Gulf Coast Retailers Association from 1994 to 2006.
Joe is currently an active member in several industry related organizations, including the American Leadership Forum; the current chair of Food Industry Association Executives; the Texas Attorney General’s Employer Task Force; the Governor’s Private Sector Advisory Committee, and the Texas Merchants Advisory Committee.
In addition, he is currently serving on the Healthy Living Matters childhood obesity prevention collaborative in Houston, serves on the University of Houston College of Technology Board, and serves as Chair of the University of Houston Retailing & Consumer Science Advisory Board. In 2004, he was appointed to the Maternal, Infant, and Fetal Nutrition National Advisory Council by the Bush Administration and was made chair of the Council for 2006. He has served on the Houston Independent School District Career and Technology Advisory Board, the Houston Chapter of the Red Cross, local Municipal Utility District as an elected director (33 yrs) and President (over 20 yrs) and served many years on the Board of a local non-profit (SEARCH) that works with the homeless.
Ms. Gibson comes to TRA after serving as Executive Director of Citizens against Lawsuit Abuse of Central Texas. Ms. Gibson will be responsible for representing TRA member interests before the Texas Legislature.
Ms. Gibson brings approximately twenty years experience in all three branches of state government as well as regional association management experience. She has managed and fundraised for legislative campaigns and has facilitated client’s needs through the legislative process as a governmental consultant.
Ms. Gibson holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from the University of Oklahoma.
Jennifer Storm- Director of Membership Development and Event Planning (512) 472-8261 ext. 204