Weslaco native Benita Valdez became the newest member of Tropical Texas Behavioral Health’s board of trustees after she was appointed and sworn in last week by county officials.

TTBH is the mental health authority for Hidalgo, Cameron and Willacy counties. Its nine-member board oversees planning, development and coordination of local behavior health services, according to a press release on Valdez’s appointment.

Valdez’s “community involvement and passion for bringing resources to the area” made her a qualified candidate for the position, the release said.

“With Tropical’s significant service expansion in the Mid-Valley area over the last few years, it is great to have a board member representative from Weslaco,” said Terry Crocker, the organization’s CEO. “Her business background and knowledge will also be a welcome addition to our board.”

Valdez, a lifelong resident of Weslaco and a certified public manager, studied at Texas Tech University and the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley. She is president and owner of the American Financial Bureau in Weslaco, which she has operated since 1989.

She is a member of the South Texas College Business Management Advisory Committee and a member for multiple boards in Weslaco, including the City of Weslaco Hospital Advisory Board.

According to the release, Valdez “looks forward to utilizing her knowledge of the needs of her community to improve access for Mid-Valley residents to the services that Tropical provides.”