Home > About Us > Executive Director Ike Mills

Mills has more than 25 years of economic/community development experience in Port Arthur, Texas.  Served as the former City of Port Arthur Business & Jobs Development Officer, providing access to information for entrepreneurial development in Port Arthur.  Researched, coordinated and instrumental in establishing the formation and early operation of the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation (PAEDC) currently in existence.   Served as the former Deputy Director and later the Executive Director of the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation, a public Non-Profit Section 4A Corporation funded by half-cent sales taxes.

While serving as the Executive Director of the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation, Mills was responsible for writing, developing, administering and  serving as the Director of the first EPA Brownfields Redevelopment Initiative Pilot Program Grant in the City of Port Arthur, Texas, and Southeast Texas, one of a few in the entire State of Texas at that time.  Initiated, coordinated and facilitated the $30 Million Wal-Mart and Lowe’s project, the largest retail development in the City of Port Arthur since the late 1970’s.  Successful in locating the Medical Center of Southeast Texas along with a Medical Office Building, a $100 Million Project, in the City of Port Arthur.  Mills was presented the Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC) Community Award for this project.  Responsible for the initial plans and development of the Port Arthur Business Park.

Mills economic development efforts was spotlighted by OUTLOOK Magazine in 2002 for “Texas Who’s Who” in the Economic Development Profession. Selected as a facilitator for the Texas White House Conference on Small Business during U.S. President Clinton Administration.  Currently serve as Chairman of the NAACP Port Arthur Community Development Committee and the Texas Community Reinvestment (CRA) Group Coordinator, affiliated with the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) in Washington, DC.

Mills professional development training background includes, Georgia Institute of Technology, Local Economic Impact Analysis Training in Atlanta Georgia, Economic Development Institute (EDI) at Oklahoma University in Norman, Oklahoma, Basic Economic Development Training from Texas A & M University in Bryan, Texas.

Portfolio Management for Economic Development Loans Training by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Federal Emergency Management Authority (FEMA) Certified Management Training with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Economic Development Finance Training by the National Development Council (NDC), Edwin L. Cox School of Business Training, Southern Methodist University on Total Quality Management (TQM) for Public Sector Training by Bank One Corporation.

Former City of Port Arthur Urban Renewal Board Appointee.

2015, appointed by Former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to serve on the National Minority Farmers Advisory Committee and the Civil Rights Sub-Committee in Washington, DC.

2016, selected to serve on the Advisory Board of the Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers (SDFR) Policy Research Center at Alcorn State University.



Mills is a 1977 graduate of Lamar University located in Beaumont, Texas where he was selected 2nd Team All- Southland Conference Basketball Player.  Mills reside in Port Arthur, Texas with his wife, has two children and serve as Deacon/Trustee at the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in Beaumont, Texas.