Assistant Chief Tony Pena joined TDEM in 2011 as the first ever Region 3 State Coordinator and continues to serve in the role today. Region 3 consists of 27 South Texas counties including a 754 mile stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border. Frequent events that impact the region include severe flooding, hurricanes, wildfires and emergencies along the U.S. Mexico border.
Prior to joining TDEM, Tony dedicated a majority of his career to law enforcement where he served for the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office, the McAllen Police Department, the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners, and the Hidalgo County Constable’s Office. In 2007, Tony was appointed as the Hidalgo County Emergency Management Coordinator and as interim County Fire Marshal until 2011. While at Hidalgo County, he also served as the Lone Star All-Hazards Incident Management Team, leader and coordinator for the Rio Grande Valley (RGV).
Some notable events Tony responded to include Hurricane Harvey where he coordinated the emergency management response, the 2007-08 South Texas wildfire season where he served as the Hidalgo County Wildfire Response Task Force Coordinator; Hurricane Dolly and Hurricane Ike where he co-led the 134 person Rio Grande Valley Public Works Task Force; Hurricane Alex and the subsequent RGV flooding where he served on a 64-day deployment executing water relocations. Additionally, Tony initiated the Rio Grande Valley Regional Radio Communications System.
Tony maintains his designation as a Master Peace Officer, is a Certified Texas Emergency Manager and a Graduate of DPS Command College Cohort 2 Class. Tony was honorably discharged from the United States Marine Corps.