Best Local Boy Made Good - 2003
Coffee king Carlos de Aldecoa Bueno
De Aldecoa's Cadeco Industries bought the old Uncle Ben's Rice facility on Clinton Drive in the late '90s and turned it into a world-class coffee storage and processing plant. De Aldecoa is the scion of a family that began the business in Spain in the 1920s and extended it to Mexico and later the United States. Born in Mexico, he attended Houston's Strake Jesuit high school and earned an engineering degree at the University of Houston. He became president of the Greater Houston Coffee Association this year and helped spearhead the successful drive to win New York Board of Trade designation for Houston as a green coffee and raw cocoa exchange port. According to de Aldecoa, the new status will provide a caffeine jolt to the local economy. "It's going to create a big job growth for the Houston market," says the coffee king, who notes that coffee imports into Miami increased fivefold when that Florida city received a similar designation.