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Jose Pereira

Jose Pereira

Cypress, Texas

Jose Ángel Pereira was unjustly detained and held captive in Venezuela for almost five years, from November 21, 2017 to October 1, 2022. Pereira was a member of the so-called CITGO6.

His only crime was being an American. Before being taken hostage, he spent thirty-five years as an oil company executive and CEO of Citgo Petroleum (a US-based refinery complex and extensive gas station distribution center).

Pereira earned a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the Universidad de Oriente (UDO) in Venezuela in 1985.

He joined Corpoven, S.A. (today Petróleos de Venezuela-PDVSA (Venezuelan State company), the fifth largest oil company in the world at that time.

In 1989 he completed his Master of Business Administration at Florida International University through a joint program with Universidad De Oriente (UDO).

In 2012, he received a Diploma in International Taxation from the University of Santiago de Compostela in Spain.

Throughout his career, Pereira held several management positions in various PDVSA subsidiaries worldwide.

He was assigned to numerous joint ventures of Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) with Ente Nationale Idrocarburi (ENI), including ENI—Italy, Inpex—Japan, China National Petroleum Company (CNPC)—China, Statoil—Norway, Total—France, and Chevron. Conoco and Exxon—USA

He was chief financial officer of CVP (a subsidiary of PDVSA's international joint ventures) and rose to become CEO of Citgo Petroleum, replacing Nelson Martínez, who later became Minister of Petroleum and president of PDVSA.

Pereira was part of Venezuela's large oil and petrochemical projects in the 1980s, launching PDVSA to become one of the top five companies in the international oil business.

He was actively involved in several management positions, including the "Apertura Petrolera" (privatization of oil fields in Venezuela) in the 1990s, the most extensive privatization of state-owned companies at that time.

Pereira was instrumental in directing the internationalization of PDVSA in the late 1990s and early 2000s and in the renationalization of PDVSA in 2006-2007.

He was also part of the PDVSA team that created the Venezuelan Petroleum Corporation (CVP). This subsidiary managed more than forty JVs with international oil companies in Venezuela.

His strategic leadership promoted him to the positions of CFO and CEO of US-based Citg Petroleum, which he held until his retirement.

While at the peak of his career as CEO of Citgo (the sixth largest refinery complex in the United States), Pereira was called to attend a business meeting in Caracas at the headquarters of Petróleo de Venezuela (PDVSA), (Citgo's parent company).

That day, the Venezuelan regime accused him of corruption, espionage and treason, among other false charges, and captured and imprisoned him. This nightmare lasted 1,775 days: four years and eight long months.

After the United States government orchestrated his release, Pereira focused on defending and supporting hostage families enduring similar nightmares and broken trials.

His experience made it clear that what he survived can help others who struggle to overcome, thrive and succeed in any circumstance.

He now speaks to spread a message of resilience, hope, faith and survival in a speech titled:
"From Captivity to Freedom: Overcoming adversity and trauma to build resilience: with a message of Love, Faith and Hope"

Pereira is proof that we can conquer anything.

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About the author

sé Ángel Pereira fue detenido injustamente y mantenido cautivo en Venezuela durante casi cinco años, desde el 21 de noviembre de 2017 hasta el 1 de octubre de 2022. Pereira era miembro del llamado CITGO6.

Su único delito fue ser estadounidense. Antes de ser tomado como rehén, pasó treinta y cinco años como ejecutivo de una compañía petrolera y director ejecutivo de Citgo Petroleum (un complejo de refinerías con sede en Estados Unidos y un amplio centro de distribución de gasolineras).

Pereira obtuvo una licenciatura en Administración de Empresas de la Universidad de Oriente (UDO) en Venezuela en 1985.

Se incorporó a Corpoven, S.A. (hoy Petróleos de Venezuela-PDVSA (empresa del Estado venezolano), la quinta empresa petrolera del mundo en ese momento.

En 1989 completó su Maestría en Administración de Empresas en Florida International University a través de un programa conjunto con la Universidad De Oriente (UDO).

En 2012, recibió un Diploma en Fiscalidad Internacional de la Universidad de Santiago de Compostela en España.

A lo largo de su carrera, Pereira ocupó varios cargos directivos en diversas filiales de PDVSA a nivel mundial.

Estuvo asignado a numerosas empresas conjuntas de Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) con Ente Nationale Idrocarburi (ENI), incluidas ENI—Italia, Inpex—Japón, China National Petroleum Company (CNPC)—China, Statoil—Noruega, Total—Francia y Chevron. Conoco y Exxon—EE.UU.

Fue director financiero de CVP (una filial de PDVSA de las empresas conjuntas internacionales) y ascendió hasta convertirse en director general de Citgo Petroleum, en sustitución de Nelson Martínez, quien más tarde se convirtió en Ministerio de Petróleo y presidente de PDVSA.

Pereira formó parte de los grandes proyectos petroleros y petroquímicos de Venezuela en los años 80, lanzando a PDVSA a convertirse en una de las cinco principales empresas del negocio petrolero internacional.

Participó activamente en varios puestos directivos, incluida la "Apertura Petrolera" (privatización de los campos petroleros en Venezuela) en los años 90, la privatización más amplia de empresas estatales en ese momento.

Pereira fue fundamental en la dirección de la internacionalización de PDVSA a finales de los 90 y principios de los 2000 y en la renacionalización de PDVSA en 2006-2007.

También formó parte del equipo de PDVSA que creó la Corporación Venezolana de Petróleos (CVP). Esta filial administró más de cuarenta JV con compañías petroleras internacionales en Venezuela.

Su liderazgo estratégico lo promovió a los puestos de director financiero y director ejecutivo de Citg Petroleum, con sede en Estados Unidos, que ocupó hasta su jubilación.

Mientras se encontraba en la cima de su carrera como director general de Citgo (el sexto complejo de refinería más grande de Estados Unidos), Pereira fue llamado a asistir a una reunión de negocios en Caracas en la sede de Petróleo de Venezuela (PDVSA), (la empresa matriz de Citgo).

Ese día, el régimen venezolano lo acusó de corrupción, espionaje y traición, entre otros cargos falsos, y lo capturó y encarceló. Esta pesadilla duró 1.775 días: cuatro años y ocho largos meses.

Después de que el gobierno de los Estados Unidos orquestó su liberación, Pereira se centró en defender y apoyar a las familias rehenes que soportaban pesadillas similares y procesos rotos.

Su experiencia dejó en claro que lo que sobrevivió puede ayudar a otros que luchan por superarse, prosperar y tener éxito en cualquier circunstancia.

Ahora habla para difundir un mensaje de resiliencia, esperanza, fe y supervivencia en un discurso titulado:
"Del Cautiverio a la Libertad: Superar la adversidad y el trauma para construir resiliencia: con un mensaje de Amor, Fe y Esperanza"

Pereira es una prueba de que podemos conquistar cualquier cosa.
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Hostage US

Hostage US is a 501c3 non-profit organization that supports families of Americans taken hostage or wrongfully detained abroad and supports hostages and detainees when they return home.

Each year, an estimated 200 Americans are taken hostage overseas. We are here to help families survive this terrifying ordeal and help former hostages rebuild their life after captivity. For more information on Hostage US please visit

Hostage Aid Worldwide

Hostage Aid is a non-profit NGO 501(c)(3) that was recently established in September 2020 by a group of former hostages from around the world, families of hostages and subject matter experts, all of whom, based on their different personal experiences as well as suffering have banded together to fight for the release of hostages globally while aiming to prevent this inhumane act of hostage taking from occurring against other innocent people.

HAW will complement the great work that is being carried out by other important organizations that help and advocate for hostages. In addition to providing humanitarian relief and support to current and former hostages who were unlawfully detained, HAW is aiming to work closely with technology experts and different stakeholders to scientifically address the hostage taking “business model” by identifying ways to target different components of this model and disrupt its operation. This will be done by a state-of-the-art scientific and data-driven approach to state sponsored hostage taking which is being developed as a tool with an aim to put an end to hostage taking.

To this end, HAW is in the process of initiating a hostage tracking system powered by artificial intelligence that will assist governments struggling to deal with the global hostage crises and can be used as a significant tool to achieve tangible outcomes.

See for more.

James W. Foley Legacy Foundation

Inspired by the life, work, and moral courage of American journalist, educator and humanitarian James W. Foley, we catalyze action, research and policy to advocate for freedom of all US nationals wrongfully detailed or held hostage abroad, to ensure government accountability to prioritize their safe return and to educate and protect journalists and international travelers.

Amer Fakhoury Foundation

The Amer Fakhoury Foundation fights for all victims of illegal detention as well as victims living under radical and corrupted governments. We look to provide advocacy, emotional, and financial support to the victims and their families. We work to ensure anti-torture laws are created and implemented in countries that enforce torture on helpless victims.

Our founders are the daughters of the late Amer Fakhoury. Amer was kidnapped and held hostage by Hezbollah, a recognized terrorist organization. Separated by force from his family, and under extreme physical and emotional torture, Amer was coerced to sign false documents which were later used against him to keep him imprisoned in Lebanon. After several months of his family and the United States Government fighting for his freedom, Amer was finally released on March 19th, 2020. However, due to the torture, abuse, and maltreatment he received during his unlawful detention, he passed away shortly after his return home. Together, we will fight tirelessly to advocate for the release or rescue of hostage victims.

With your help, we can save lives, bring justice to those denied it, and comfort to those impacted.





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Success! From Hero to Villain has already sold 44 pre-orders , was pitched to 17 publishers , and will be published by United Book Publishers .
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$30 Order Today + Support the Hostage Community

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Order "From Hero to Villain" and support the hostage community.

Jose has selected the following organization to donate 30% from each sale as a contribution to help aid their important efforts:

1) Foley Foundation
2) Hostages US
3) Hostage aid worldwide
4) Amer Fakhoury Foundation

Following the checkout, you will be given the option to specify an organization to receive your donation, otherwise it will be split equally to all 4.

Additionally, as first to support Jose on his journey to publishing, readers who order a copy through Publishizer will also receive an invitation to a free group masterclass with Jose live on Zoom.

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Readers who pre order this bonus will receive a copy signed personally by Jose!

+ 30% donated to support the hostage community

+ Free group masterclass with Jose live on Zoom.

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$500 5 Print Copies + Exclusive Group Masterclass with Jose

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5 Print Copies of "From Hero to Villain"

+ 30% donated to support the hostage community

+ Exclusive group masterclass with Jose live on Zoom.

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$996 Group Speaking Engagement (Virtual) + 25 Copies

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Through these various speaking topics, Jose Pereira shares his story of being held hostage and how we can overcome adversity through resilience, hope, love for the family, and faith in God. He discusses how he survived his tragic experience daily, week by week, month by month, year by year until he returned after 1775 days of captivity.

With this bonus, readers receive 75 copies and a Virtual Speaking engagement with Jose, selecting from the following Speaking Topics:






**This can be upgraded to a live, in person event for an additional cost. Email to learn more **

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Update #15 - Unleashing Unbreakable Spirits: 2023 A Year on my Journey of Resilience and Leadership Triumph Dec. 31, 2023

Dear Community

As we bid farewell to the remarkable achievements of 2023, I find myself deeply grateful for the journey that has unfolded since my return from captivity.

It’s a journey of healing, advocacy, and the discovery of an inner unbreakable spirit that fuels my mission to empower others to become extraordinary leaders.

Embracing Resilience

After one year post-captivity, my commitment to healing led me the first months of this year to therapy and trauma centers, with the support of the wonderful Foundations that give physical an mental support to the former Hostages and their families

Emerging from this transformative process, I embarked on a mission to support and advocate for the hostage community as a way to express my gratitude and retrain my own mind for empowerment, and decided to raise my voice to amplify the awareness in stopping the "Hostage Diplomacy

This journey sparked the creation of my coaching program, aimed at helping individuals and companies to bounce back from adversities and emerge stronger and more resilient and unleash their unbreakable spirit to become great leaders

From Captive to Coach:

A Year of Impact

Throughout the year, I took my message of Resilience and Leadership to various platforms.

Speaking at numerous physical and online stages, from public forums such as the US Congress and UN General Assembly Forum to Corporate Summits, Private Meetings and Foundations National Conventions 

I shared my insights on leadership and resilience.

This mission extended to educating others through masterclasses, audio events, courses, and appearances on podcasts, TV, and radio shows, as well as written articles in blogs and magazines and interviews in major media outlets

Always with my two passions of Raising awareness on the Hostage Diplomacy and amplifying my message on Leadership and Resilience

LinkedIn Launch and Unstoppable Brand Creation

In 2023 the month of May marked the beginning of my LinkedIn journey, a platform where I’ve become unstoppable in creating my brand.

As a Leadership & Resilience Coach and Motivational Speaker in the Company i became the CEO and Founder : Coach as a Survivor LLC, I leverage my unique blend of experiences as a former International Hostage and CEO.

Leveraging Experience to Empower Leaders With over 35 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, including leadership roles as CEO at Citgo Petroleum,

It brought me a wealth of knowledge to my coaching practice.

My coaching program, LPSG, is tailored to CEOs, Business Owners, and Entrepreneurs, focusing on unleashing their unbreakable spirit.

The program addresses challenges, enhances leadership capabilities, improves management performance, and fosters teamwork and employee engagement.

Take Action Today! As we embark on 2024, I invite you to be part of this journey.

The Leader’s Journey is Not only Building resilience is a journey, and no leader should embark on it alone.

Mentorship and coaching play pivotal roles in enhancing leadership skills and bolstering resilience.

A mentor can provide insights based on experience, while coaching offers a structured approach to skill development.

Explore Leadership Transformation with LPSG Coaching Program


For those eager to dive deeper into the realms of brain rewiring and leadership development, our LPSG Coaching Program awaits. It’s a transformative journey that equips leaders with the tools to retrain their brains and emerge as resilient, visionary leaders.

We are currently booking for 2024 one on one sessions and Corporate Session tailor made to you and your team

Our Coaching Program is designed to empower leaders with the skills necessary to navigate the complexities of leadership.

We focus on enhancing leadership abilities, improving management strategies, and addressing communication challenges. This program is not just about surviving; it’s about thriving in the leadership landscape.

Here’s to a fearless and triumphant 2024!
Warm regards,
Jose Pereira

Leadership & Resilience Coach

Coach as a Survivor LLC

Ready to embark on a journey of leadership transformation? Schedule a call

Jose Pereira 30 minutes free call and take the first step towards transformative leadership and take the first step towards transformative leadership.

Let’s connect, share, and grow together.

Stay tuned for our next edition, and thank you for being a part of our journey towards building resilience and embracing the power of communication.

Follow my web page

My WIIFM can offer a unique combination of business leadership expertise and personal resilience. Be part of the journey toward building a better and more resilient workplace.

About the book: the Pre -Order  campaign is on going of the book " "From Hero to Villain-The true Story of the CITGO6"

Pereira's book is scheduled to be out in mid January 2024

It is a riveting account of the events leading up to and during the imprisonment of the CITGO6. Notably,during most of his detainment, Pereira and his wife engaged in a death-defying act reminiscent of Anne Frank secreting her diary from the Nazis. 

They smuggled letters to each other, which boosted his morale to keep living another day and inspired this book upon release. 

These carefully written words served as a vital resource for Pereira in outlining his memoir. 

The determination and bravery embodied by him and his wife in preserving these letters under such punishing duress add a remarkable layer of depth to Pereira’s story.

When you read his accounts, you are there with him in the gritty cell, enduring the agony of fellow prisoners, then finally rejoicing when he hears the news he is going home.

Pereira’s story has since evolved into a movement: changing the narrative of what it takes to bring the wrongfully detained home. 

This is a work unlike any other. The advent of critical change is making a difference not only in the lives of prisoners; it is transforming global politics around these cases.

Sometimes, it is the quietest voice that influences and alters our trajectory. Also in the works: a guidebook providing recommendations to returning detainees to enable their successful reintegration into society—the only publication of its kind.