Our Staff

International Trade Center Staff

Cliff Paredes


Cliff is director of the South-West Texas Border International Trade Center. He leads the center’s vision and strategy.

He previously served as a Senior International Trade Specialist where he provided consulting and seminar services for businesses in the Southwest Texas Border Region. He also has experience working with the U.S. Department of Commerce San Antonio Export Assistance Center and the Casa San Antonio in Mexico City where he promoted two-way trade opportunities between the small businesses of Mexico and South Texas.

Cliff is a Certified Global Business Professional.

    Douglas Smith


    Douglas Smith is Assistant Director of the International Trade Center, University of Texas at San Antonio.

    He has worked in international consulting for 25 years, focusing on import and export development, marketing channel management, international marketing strategy and market and economic research. His consulting experience involves a broad range of industries, ranging from industrial products to processed foods.

    He has consulted for small businesses and a broad range of organizations, including IBM and Johnsons Wax, Business Round Table, and the foreign trade agencies of Thailand, Portugal, and Colombia. His international experience includes projects in Western Europe, South America, Asia, and Africa.

    Before joining the Center, he was Vice President for Consulting at Global Trade Information Services, an international trade information company; a member of the International Business Department, University of South Carolina, and consultant with Frank Lynn & Associates, an international marketing channel management advisory company.

    He was a contributing editor to Textile Asia Magazine and has published in Atlanta International Magazine, Twin Plant News, and Business Horizons. He holds a M.A. International Relations and a M.B.A. in Finance and International Business from the University of Texas Austin, and is a Certified Global Business Professional.

      Monica Alcoz


      Mónica Alcoz is a Sr. International Trade Consultant with the International Trade Center (ITC) in San Antonio. Under this position she provides technical support to small and medium size businesses interested in exploring international business opportunities.

      For the last ten years she was the project manager of the Southern U.S. Trade Association Minority Export Training program, a customized, one-on-one export training and consulting program for high-value food and agricultural companies interested in expanding into foreign markets.

      Moreover, Monica has been actively involved in the development of the new International Small Business Development Center (SBDC) networks in Mexico, El Salvador, and continuous to assist with the expansion and growth of the SBDC network in Central America, the Caribbean and South America.

      Before joining the ITC in 2001, Mónica was an Agricultural Engineer (Ingeniera Agrónoma) working as a crop consultant for farmers in her native country of Uruguay. Mónica holds a Bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering from the Universidad de la República in Uruguay and an MBA in International Business from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Monica is a Certified Business Advisor and a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP).

      Mónica is a member of the North America Small Business International Trade Educators Association and the Hispanic MBA Association. Mónica is fluent in English, Spanish, French and Portuguese.

        Berenice Carmona


        Berenice is a Sr. International Business Consultant, at the International Trade Center. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Management with concentration in International Business from the University of Northern Iowa, and is a Certified Global Business Professional. She joined the International Trade Center in 2005 and has also served as International Market Research Specialist, Interns Coordinator and Client Services Coordinator.

        She is a member of the North American Small Business International Trade Educators. She is bilingual and bicultural having worked and lived in both the United States and México.

        Berenice is a Certified Global Business Professional.

          Alberto Rodriguez-Baez


          Alberto Rodriguez-Baez has spent his entire professional and academic careers in the field of international marketing and business development. His work experience spans from large global corporations to small businesses; private and public organizations; as well as non-profit and for-profit companies. He is passionate about helping American companies become globally competitive.

          After earning his undergraduate degree in international marketing, Alberto started his professional career as an international sports marketing executive, developing marketing campaigns and public relations programs for professional baseball teams and athletes.

          Alberto attended the University of Nebraska, where he earned his MBA. Before graduating, he attended the prestigious Focus Leadership Institute. After graduating, Alberto moved to Colorado to work as an international media executive for a non-profit organization, where he led the expansion of the organization’s Spanish media network worldwide.

          Alberto moved from Colorado to Texas to be in charge of the international department at RPS International. His main duty was to lead the expansion of the company’s worldwide distributor network and the company’s global marketing initiatives. Alberto tripled the company’s international presence; expanded the distributors’ network in the Middle East, Europe and Mexico; and introduced the brand to Africa, Asia, Central America and the Caribbean.

          Alberto is a CGBP (Certified Global Business Professional) and CBC (Certified Business Consultant).

            Julio Garcia de las Mestas


            Julio is a Sr. International Business Consultant at the International Trade Center. At the Center he works with the SBDCGlobal program to train foreign governments in Latin America on how to set up US model SBDC networks. He also provides international trade-consulting assistance for small and medium size businesses.

            Julio earned a bachelor’s degree in Merchant Marine from the University of A Coruña and worked as deck officer on board 4 vessels of the Spanish Merchant Marine fleet. He has studied different fields of global trade, obtaining a degree in International Shipping as well as having received his license as a Freight Forwarder, Transport Agent and Wholesaler.

            In 1994 he was awarded a scholarship to support the activities of the Commercial Service of the Spanish Embassy to Mexico. While in Mexico he was involved with several different businesses and was later in charge of Industrial Expansion Program at the Universidad Veracruzana (UV) in Veracruz. In that position he also helped create the Mexican Association of Small Business Development Centers (AMCDPE).

            Julio is a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) with more than 15 years experience helping small businesses positioning their products and services in the global market. He is a believer that promoting business success is a way to tackle social inequalities and promote business opportunities for American People.

              Minerva Garcia


              Minerva Garcia is a International Business Consultant at the International Trade Center. She has been involved in technology commercialization programs and consulting services for more than 11 years. Her international experience includes many projects in the European Union and Latin America.

              Since 2006, when she joined the International Trade Center, she has been actively involved in the U.S. SBDC Network expansion into Mexico and Central America. Prior to joining the International Trade Center, she worked as a Technology Consultant at the Technology Transfer Office at the University La Laguna in Spain. She also worked at the Treasury Unit at the Budget Directorate in the European Commission in Belgium and as an Accounting-Finance Consultant at ATL Consultants in Spain.

              She holds a M.S. in Management of Technology from the University of Texas at San Antonio and is a Certified Global Business Professional. She was born and raised in the Canary Islands, Spain. She is fluent in Spanish, English and German and has traveled and lived in many European countries.

                Barbara Mooney


                Ms. Barbara Mooney has worked at the International Trade Center since 2007. In her most recent position as an International Business Consultant, Barbara provides trade-consulting assistance to small- and medium-size businesses in the South-West Texas Border region. She also conducts market research in the area of international trade development and provides import-export training for small business clients. Prior to working as a consultant, Barbara managed the International Trade Center import-export training programs, planning, developing and coordinating training events in the United States and Mexico.

                Barbara has a Bachelor of Business Administration with a concentration in International Business and a MBA with a concentration in Project Management from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Barbara is also a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) and has recently earned her Project Management Professional (PMP) Accreditation.

                  Jaime Martinez


                  Jaime Martinez joined the San Antonio Small Business Development Center in 2007. He now is a Senior International Business Consultant for the International Trade Center heading up Programa Invierte a program in the International Trade Center’s Texas International Business Accelerator (TIBA).

                  Jaime’s role as a Senior International Business Consultant is to provide specialized business advice to foreign investor to Texas in the areas of business plans, financial projections, and marketing plans.

                  He began his professional career with Frost National Bank working in the Customer Service, Telephone Banking, and International Private Banking departments. Jaime continued his banking career with Wachovia Bank as a Financial Specialist. He assisted his clientele with consumer/business lending, financial advice, and money management. He also advised small business owners on sales, marketing, and customer service strategies. As an International Banker he assisted many Mexican National business owners with establishing their businesses in San Antonio.

                  Jaime holds a BBA in International Business from UTSA and an MBA in Management from Our Lady of The Lake University.

                    Carla Gonzalez


                    Carla Gonzalez is the SBDCGlobal.com Site Specialist at the International Trade Center. As the SBDCGlobal.com Site Specialist, Carla oversees the development, maintenance, usage and promotion of the online trade platform, which connects the small business clients of the U.S. and Mexican SBDC networks for bilateral trade opportunities and education. Carla joined the International Trade Center in 2008 and previously served as an International Market Research Specialist. In this position Carla conducted and provided market research for the small and medium-sized businesses of the 79-county South-West Texas Border Region.

                    Carla holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations with a minor in Business Administration as well as a Master of Arts in International Relations with a concentration in International Development, both from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. She was born and raised in San Antonio and is fluent in English and Spanish.

                      Sylvia Castillo


                      Sylvia joined the International Trade Center as an Administrative Associate II in August 2005. Previously she worked with a local attorney for 15 years. She is a native San Antonian, married and has 3 grown children and loves cooking and the different flavors and ethnicity that San Antonio is known for.

                        Douglas CohenMiller


                        In May of 2008 Doug joined the International Trade Center, a center within the Institute for Economic Development, as in-house graphic designer, and moved into the newly created Marketing and Communications Coordinator position in December of 2010. Doug is responsible for creating promotional material for print, web and email, event photography, maintaining the Center website and heading up the social media and PR efforts of the organization.

                        In the last decade Doug has been the in-house designer for three organizations and has had extensive experience running his own design studio. Doug holds a degree in Culinary Arts from the acclaimed Le Cordon Bleu culinary school, Atlanta campus and has completed a degree in Graphic Design and holds a certificate in Digital Illustration Design from San Antonio College.

                          Anabel Guerra

                          TRAINING PROGRAM COORDINATOR

                          Anabel Guerra is the Training Program Coordinator at the International Trade Center. She manages the center’s training programs in the development, planning, and coordination of International trade events.

                          Prior to joining the International Trade Center in February of 2011, she worked at the UTSA Mexico Center as a graduate research assistant where she conducted various research projects of U.S. and Mexico related issues as well as assisted in the coordination and implementation of events. She holds a M.S. of Science in Sociology from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She is bilingual and bicultural having worked and lived in both Mexico and the United States. She is from Matamoros, Mexico.

                            Janette Riddell

                            CLIENT MANAGEMENT SPECIALIST

                            Janette is the Finance and Client Management Specialist at the International Trade Center. As a Client Management Specialist, she supports the center’s client intake and follow-up process, manages the center’s consulting performance and productivity as part of a set of strategies implemented by the center to fulfill the organization’s vision.

                            As the Finance and Contract Compliance Specialists, she assist the center’s director in maintaining the center’s local, state and federal grant projects in compliance with UTSA policies and procedures by preparing for and participating in grant program audits and onsite reviews; monitoring and documenting expenditure transactions; ensuring proper expenditure rates, budget balances and accuracy.

                            Janette is responsible to recruit, train, supervise and coordinate the International Market Research staff that supports the center’s consulting staff. She also collaborates with the International SBDC Expansion projects facilitating in-country and web based training in English and Spanish, regarding the center’s Client Management Processes and the on-line Client Management System in Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America.

                            Prior to joining the International Trade Center in 2006, she worked in the Manufacturing Industry, participated in various projects related to Engineering and Research & Development, and supported a range of Technology Management projects doing research and analyzing the diffusion of technology innovations in its marketplace.

                            Janette is a Certified Global Business Professional, by NASBITE International, holds a M.S. in Management of Technology from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and a B.S. in Mechanical Management Engineering from the Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon. She is bilingual and multicultural having worked and lived in the United States, Slovakia and Mexico.


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