JC Cruz


McAllen, Texas AreaLegal Services

Current Sotelo Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services, Sotelo and Associates, LLC

Previous South Texas College, The University of Texas - Pan American

Education Northcentral University

What Were You Thinking?The Six Mental Disciplines Leaders Need to SucceedYou May Not Know It, But Your New Manager Needs a Coach!


The best organizational leaders are remarkably influential, fully-engaged, and enlightened individuals. They strive to meet the needs of their constituents while sustaining a healthy and productive work environment for their team. Two decades in executive and administrative leadership have taught me how to build such a capacity for leadership in others.

I help clients lead people and organizations effectively by building on their capacity for profound situational awareness, collective wisdom, adaptive resilience, and emotional maturity. Many call it transformative. I call it Mindful Leadership.

Presently, I serve as vice president for Sotelo & Associates LLC, where I deliver executive coaching, organizational consulting, and leadership training to our clients and business partners. I am trained and certified in a variety of development and facilitative methodologies with graduate education in both business administration and organizational leadership. 

Before joining the Sotelo team, I served 16 years as vice president and chief strategy officer for South Texas College, the 7th largest community college system in Texas.

You may reach me at jose@sotelocoach.com at any time, or call my office at (956) 664-2137. Let me know how I can be of help.

Specializations: Higher Education and Nonprofit executive leadership, Emotional Intelligence, NeuroLeadership, managerial coaching, mediation and conflict resolution, senior and executive management, change management


Mediator and Conflict Coach

Sotelo Mediation and Conflict Resolution Services

July 2016 – Present (2 months)McAllen, Texas Area

Mediating civil cases and disputes relating to business, consumer, employment, contractual agreements, and small claims. 

Coaching teams and team leaders in matters relating to conflict at the workplace, communication breakdowns, change management, crisis management, and reductions-in-force (RIF) events. 

Training services related to conflict management, human dynamics, organizational communication, and team effectiveness.

Specializing in conflict management, consulting, trust restoration, and teambuilding.

Vice President & Executive Coach

Sotelo and Associates, LLC

August 2012 – Present (4 years 1 month)McAllen, Texas Area

Senior Management responsible for delivery and quality assurance of all the company's primary services:

Mediation Services (Civil, HR, B2B, B2C)

Conflict Management and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Executive Leadership Coaching

Career and Jobs Coaching

Management/Team On-boarding Support

Professional Staff Development

Leadership Skills Training

Keynote Presentations

Retreat Facilitation

Strategic Planning

Execution and Change Management

(Open)1 recommendation

Erik Toren

Erik Toren

Program Director

One of the key tasks of being a manager is providing your staff with training opportunities. It's always a big plus when the presenter brings not only their experience, but also ideas and process that are innovative and create a positive shift in...View

VP for Information Services, Planning & Strategic Initiatives

South Texas College

September 1998 – August 2014 (16 years)McAllen, Texas Area

I served as the college’s Chief Strategy Officer, responsible for guiding and aiding the college's efforts in creating, communicating, implementing, and sustaining the strategic initiatives of the college's student access, success and completion agendas. I provided consult to and with the President, executive, and administrative teams on issues of college operations, strategic direction, business analytics, and execution management. 

I was invited by the college's President and national search committee to join the college's executive branch as Vice President in 1998 and continued my mission to help turn a fledgling 2,500 student, single-campus institution into the 7th largest multi-campus community college district in the State of Texas.  

As VP, I provided vision and leadership to the teams responsible for the college's strategic and operational planning, analytical research, organizational effectiveness, information resources, and information technology services branch. My teams brought insightful strategic initiative development, an infusion of state-of-the-art technology, and data analytics to the organization's mission of serving the people of Hidalgo and Starr counties.  

My team and I established countless firsts for the fledgling college in all areas of information management, technology and organizational/academic strategy.

I was responsible for a team of 13 administrators, over 180 full-time staff, 80 additional FTEs in part-time personnel, and $7.8 million in annual operating budgets.

As an evening adjunct instructor in the Business Administration and Technology Management departments.

Courses taught:

- Introduction to Business

- Business Ethics

- Business Conduct

- Resource Management

- Supervision

- College Success

Interim Vice President for Administrative Services

South Texas College

February 2011 – August 2013 (2 years 7 months)McAllen, Texas Area

In addition to my duties as VP for Information Services and Planning, I temporarily and concurrently served as Interim VP for Administrative Services during the college's national search for new leadership in this area. During this interim period, I oversaw an additional 100 personnel, including Facilities and Operations Maintenance, Facilities Planning & Construction, Campus Security and Campus Police.

I was responsible for an additional 4 administrators, 100 full-time staff, and over $14 million in annual operating and capital budgets.

Director, Institutional Research and Effectiveness

South Texas Community College

April 1996 – August 1998 (2 years 5 months)

I joined the college's administrative team at the request of its founding President with the charge to establish the new college's first Institutional Research, Effectiveness, and Planning department. In short time, the college's leadership, talent and actionable results in IR and IE were established. 

While Director, I also successfully served as Executive Director for the college's very first reaccreditation process for accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, helping the accreditation team in securing another 10 years of full accreditation.

Institutional Research Associate

The University of Texas - Pan American

1993 – 1996 (3 years)

I served as the university's data and research analyst for purposes of planning and organizational effectiveness assessment. In 1994 I established the college's first electronic, online Fact Book and was one of the very first IR offices to establish a national standard for online Institutional Research resources on a brand new network platform that would later become the World Wide Web.



Native or bilingual proficiency


Limited working proficiency


Great Leaders Inspire Great Followership(Link)

Leadership Excellence Essentials

August 2014

A brief article outlining best practice for leaders needing to inspire team practices that meet organizational needs with efficiency, effectiveness, and harmony.

The Hungry Ghosts of Corporate Culture(Link)

Personal Excellence Essentials

November 2014


Northcentral University

Organizational Capacity Building (OL7002)

Leadership Excellence (OL7003)

Organizational Leadership Theory and Practice (OL7004)

Ethical Leadership (OL7005)

Leadership Coaching (OL7007)

Executive Leadership (OL7008)

School Organization and Administration (ED7014)

Educational Organizational Change (ED7025)

Research Design (RSH9102E)

Qualitative Research (RSH9103QLE)

Research Strategies (EDU7000)


Emotional Intelligence(Link)

Emotional Intelligence Training and Research Institute

Starting 2010

Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator(Link)

The Center for Appreciative Inquiry and Company of Experts, Inc.

Starting 2012

Volunteer Experience & Causes


Texas Department of Criminal Justice - Segovia State Prison

May 2010 – Present (6 years 4 months)Social Services

I provide volunteer services and support to incarcerated men seeking guidance and religious education.

National Hispanic InstituteBoard Member

National Hispanic Institute

February 2010 – April 2013 (3 years 3 months)Education

Invited to serve as a strategic resource and information technology expert to the board and officers.

Executive Sponsor

Library Art Gallery, South Texas College

2006 – August 2014 (8 years)Arts and Culture

As founding sponsor, I helped establish and support art galleries and showcases at all five college libraries in the college district.

South Texas CollegeLeadership Academy Advisory Board Member

South Texas College

September 2013 – August 2014 (1 year)Education

Provide advice and consultative support to the Office of Professional and Organizational Development at South Texas College and their initiative to develop and maintain in-house leadership development programs for college personnel.


Segovia Chapel Association

July 2015Social Services

A not-for-profit association of chaplains, church leaders, and prison volunteers seeking to fund the design and construction of a chapel and religious education center at the Segovia State Prison.

Member of the Board of Directors

RIo Grande Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

March 2016 – Present (6 months)Economic Empowerment

Opportunities JC is looking for:

Joining a nonprofit board

Skills-based volunteering (pro bono consulting)

Causes JC cares about:

Arts and Culture


Organizations JC supports:

Library Art Gallery


Northcentral University

Doctoral Candidate, Organizational Leadership

2010 – 2015

Specializing in the study of leadership theory, executive and managerial coaching, and higher education administration.

(Open)11 courses, including:

The University of Texas-Pan American

The University of Texas-Pan American

MBA, Business Administration, 4.0

1993 – 1995

Activities and Societies: MBA Association, Executive MBA Program

The University of Texas-Pan American

The University of Texas-Pan American

BBA, Business Administration and Management, General, 3.55

1986 – 1992

Graduated with honors: Cum Laude

Activities and Societies: Student Government, Computer Programmers and Users Organization, Data Processing Management Association

Additional Info


Appreciative Inquiry, Emotional Intelligence, Positive Psychology, Mindfulness Meditation, Leadership Theory and Practice, Eastern and Western Philosophies, Bicycling, Photography, 5k/10k Walks and Runs.

Advice for Contacting JC

Reach me at Jose@SoteloCoach.com or call (956) 664-2137

You can also follow me on Twitter at @JoseCruzJr

Honors & Awards

Additional Honors & Awards

President's Jaguar Excellence Award, South Texas College, 2007

Innovation of the Year, South Texas College, 2007

Distinguished Alumnus Award, National Hispanic Institute, 2009

Master Presenter, NISOD National Conference, 2014

Author of "Night Shift", Mesquite Review, 2003


Vice President & Executive Coach

Sotelo and Associates, LLC

Erik Toren

Program Director

One of the key tasks of being a manager is providing your staff with training opportunities. It's always a big plus when the presenter brings not only their experience, but also ideas and process that are innovative and create a positive shift in the way you approach your job. His presentations are highly engaging and is open to a dialogue with the participants. I...more

October 22, 2014, Erik was JC's client

VP for Information Services, Planning & Strategic Initiatives

South Texas College

Chris Stewart, M.S.

Licensed Professional Counselor

I have known Jose for more than 16 years. He he consistently demonstrates the kind of leadership year after year he is always at the top of his game. We have worked together when he was VP for Information Services, Planning and Strategic Initiatives at South Texas College. His personal and professional drive to learn and implement best practices and inspiration that...more

October 26, 2014, Chris worked with JC at South Texas College

Mario Reyna

Dean at South Texas College

Jose is a brilliant individual. I have been around the block a few times and Jose has impressed me with his planning skills and strategic thought process, His contributions to STC explosive growth are very evident and even an outsider can see that he played in key role in providing the leadership needed to be the number one college in the state of Texas. Jose has many...more

June 20, 2014, Mario worked directly with JC at South Texas College

Previous Page:David Blaides
Next Page:Austin Smith