Robert Torres is the President/CEO of T & R Group, LLC, a Latino and International business consultant and developer based in Toledo, Ohio; and most recently Executive Director of the Northwest Ohio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
T & R Group, LLC works in partnership with private and public developers, local municipalities, and marketing groups to capitalize on this growing international business, development, and investment market. After more than 20 years in public service, serving 5 mayoral administrations in Toledo and Canton, OH, Torres started his own consulting business to better facilitate opportunities for economic growth in the Northern Ohio region. In January of 2013, he received appointment as Executive Director for the Northwest Ohio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
He is the former Director of Economic Development for the City of Canton, Ohio. Prior to this, Torres served in several mayoral administrations in Toledo, Ohio as the Manager/Development Specialist for the city’s Economic and Community Development Department, Director of the Board of Community Relations and Director of the Office of Latino Affairs. He is a Desert Storm Veteran having served as the Battalion Legal Chief for the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate General (JAG) in the United States Marine Corps.
As Development Director, Torres was instrumental in leveraging billions of dollars in public and private financing to support historic preservation and redevelopment projects, construction of industrial development parks, mixed-use facility development and the expansion of international investment. Torres helped to prepare Canton’s economy for growth through international investment in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Development’s Trade Office in Mexico City, The Instituto de Los Mexicanos en El Exterior, and the Consulado de Mexico, Detroit, Michigan. Torres helped to found a Sister Cities relationship between Canton and Saltillo, Mexico and a separate agreement with Akko, Israel. To further international economic investment in Canton, Torres and his department hosted the Ohio Department of Development’s Global Market Division Forum matching Trade Managers from eleven global regions to meet with Northeast Ohio businesses.
Under his direction, the City of Canton successfully attracted new national and international companies such as VXI Global Solutions, a Chinese-owned company, attracting 1,000 new jobs to the city, earning Canton the 2012 Team NEO (Northeast Ohio) Economic Development Plus Award for Business Attraction. He also helped to attract Chesapeake Energy, and national health care distributor Medline Industries to Canton. Moreover, to encourage development in high growth areas, he worked to implement the Canton Launch program, a partnership between the city, Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce and JumpStart.
He is a graduate of Bowling Green State University, where he majored in public administration / political science. He has served as a community activist for many years, having founded Toledo’s premier Latino family resource center, Adelante, Inc. becoming its first Board Chair. He has also served in elective office as the Vice President of the Toledo Board of Education.
His recognitions include the Northeast Ohio Visionary Award, NE Ohio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Military Service of Distinction Award presented by Ohio Governor Ted Strickland; NW Ohio Latino Caucus Trailblazer Award; Distinguished Hispanic Ohioan Award; Ohio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s Government Business Advocate of the Year; Diamante Award for Community Leadership; Twenty Under Forty Awardee; Leadership Toledo Class of 2001; and the Outstanding Alumni for Swanton High School.
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