Leadership and Staff


Justin Coppedge

Interim President and CEO

An experienced executive with a track record of achieving results for early stage and established public and nonprofit organizations, Justin joined Texas 2036 in 2018 and has helped shepherd it’s significant growth since then in his regular role as Senior Vice President, Strategy and Operations, leading the organization’s finance, human resource, technology, and project coordination functions. Justin joined Texas 2036 after serving as Deputy Chief of Staff of the Dallas Independent School District, the nation’s 16th largest school district.

A.J. Rodriguez

Executive Vice President

Based on his experience bringing business and civic leaders together to address community challenges, A.J. Rodriguez joined Texas 2036 in September 2020 after working as Vice President, External Affairs at Zachry Group, a privately held business engaged primarily in the engineering, construction, and maintenance of large industrial facilities. He began at Zachry in 2011 and oversaw the organization’s community investment and philanthropic efforts, media relations, and government affairs.


Our Legacy Leaders


Margaret Spellings

President and CEO

Margaret Spellings served Texas 2036 from 2017-2023 after serving as president of the 17-institution University of North Carolina System. Spellings’ extensive leadership experience in state and federal government includes service as U.S. Secretary of Education, White House Chief Domestic Policy Advisor, Senior Policy Advisor to then-Governor George W. Bush, and President of the George W. Bush Presidential Center. Through her work as legislative director and chief committee clerk for the Texas House of Representatives, Spellings helped lead bipartisan efforts making her a well-respected leader across the state.