Dr. Austin Ruiz, a Harker Heights resident and Killeen optometrist, has been appointed by Gov. Greg Abbott to the Brazos River Authority board of directors.

Ruiz, owner of Killeen Vision Source, was appointed to fill the remainder of a term set to expire Feb. 1, 2021. Two board members were reappointed and five others were appointed to the board for terms set to expire on Feb. 1, 2025.

According to a news release from the governor’s office, the board formulates plans deemed essential to the operation of the District and its administration in the control, storing, preservation and distribution of the storm and flood waters of the Brazos River and its tributary streams.

In addition, the authority may discover, develop, and produce groundwater in the Brazos River basin for the use of its customers, the release stated.

Ruiz, 61, was a Republican candidate for the Texas House District 54 seat in 2016, losing a tight runoff race to eventual winner Scott Cosper of Killeen.

Ruiz is a member of the Texas Optometric Association, American Optometric Association, American Board of Optometry, and the College of Optometrists in Vision Development.

In addition, he is a board member on the Central Texas Workforce Commission and a member of the Killeen Noon Lions Club and Killeen Food Bank. Ruiz received a Bachelor of Science from the University of Houston and a Doctor of Optometry from the University of Houston College of Optometry.

Reappointed to seats on the BRA board were Jim Lattimore of Graford and Wesley Lloyd of Waco.

Lattimore is owner of The Lattimore Company. He received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin and was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army.

Lloyd is an attorney at Freeman Mills PC. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Ag Economics from Texas A&M University and a Juris Doctor degree from Texas Tech School of Law.

Appointed to the board were Thomas Abraham of Sugar Land, Gary Boren of Lubbock, Mike Fernandez of Abilene, David Savage of Katy and Darren G. Yancy Sr. of Burleson.

Abraham is president and chief executive officer of Transtar AC Supply. He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Tampa and a Master of Business Administration from Delhi University.

Boren is a retired businessman and music producer after 40 years as senior vice president of G. Boren Services, Inc. He received a Bachelor of Science from Texas Tech University.

Fernandez is executive vice president and chief financial officer and a member of the Board of Directors at Texas National Bank in Sweetwater. He received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Louisiana State University and a Master of Business Administration from Texas A&M University-San Antonio, and he attended the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, where he served as first vice president.

Savage is senior director contracts and commercial for Team Industrial Services. He received a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University.

Yancy is a consultant for HUB International Insurance Services and co-host of the Automotive Edge Radio Show & Truck Talk, a consumer education talk show. He received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Accounting from The University of Texas at Arlington.

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