The executive director of the Roswell Refuge, which works to prevent and aid recovery of domestic violence and sexual assault, has left the organization. Cindy Wilson is no longer with the nonprofit group, Lesli Carrera confirmed. The operations manager, Carrera is now serving as interim executive director.
“We are not addressing this (situation) at this time,” Carrera said when asked for further comment.
She said that she thought an announcement would be made soon by the organization’s board of directors. The president of the board, Loretta Sparkman, was not immediately available for comment.
The Roswell Refuge opened in 1981 and is partially funded by the New Mexico Department of Children, Youth and Families and the United Way of Chaves County. It runs a shelter for about 25 people and provides public awareness efforts, a 24/7 crisis phone line, and support, treatment and legal advocacy programs for survivors of abuse or sexual assault in Chaves and DeBaca counties. It also runs a thrift store on North Garden Avenue.
Wilson worked for various nonprofit organizations as well as aerospace and government subcontractors for about 15 years before becoming the Roswell Refuge executive director in 2013.
Aging Commission sets time for televised forum; Group that looks out for the interests of older adults also confirmed new officers
The City of Roswell Commission on Aging confirmed its slate of officers for the coming year and set a definitive date for a televised question-and-answer forum.
At a special meeting Wednesday afternoon, commission secretary Bonnie Montgomery said that the forum has been set for Monday, Aug. 28, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at the First Baptist Church, 500 N. Pennsylvania Ave.
The forum also will air on cable channel 64 by CableOne.
Speakers will include Monica Duran, executive director of the Chaves County JOY Centers; Matt Thompson with the Adult Protective Services division of the New Mexico Department of Aging and Long-Term Services; and a representative with the Income Support Services division of the New Mexico Human Services Department.
The meeting also confirmed that lawyer Robert McCrea will serve as chair of the commission for the upcoming year. He was not present at the July 20 meeting where he was elected by other commission members.
McCrea said that his top priority for the year will be to continue the commission’s efforts to have local law enforcement work with the Alzheimer’s Association on its program to provide locator bracelets to the elderly or others at risk of wandering.
Lynne Ybarra, vice chair of the group, said another long-standing goal of the group is to work on having transportation to Albuquerque available for senior citizens.
Commission members also made their recommendations to Mayor Dennis Kintigh for two new members. The commission has been operating with five members, but four nominees for two additional seats have been given to Kintigh, with current members able to give their recommendations. Montgomery said that Kintigh is expected to select the additional members in September.
The next meeting of the group is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 21, at 3 p.m., at the Senior Circle, 2801 N. Main St.
Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Summer season wraps up Labor Day weekend
With kids in Roswell returning to school this week, the Bert Murphy Family Splash Pad is beginning weekend-only hours of operation.
After Wednesday, Aug. 9, the splash pad at Poe Corn Park will only be open Saturdays and Sundays (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.) for the remainder of the season, which ends Labor Day (Sept. 4). On that final holiday weekend, the splash pad will be open on that Labor Day Monday, as well, for its final day of the season.
Anyone with questions can call 624-6718.
The Berrendo Cooperative Water Users Association is conducting regularly scheduled, state-required testing for lead and copper.
Office Manager Elizabeth Niece said that the association is required by the New Mexico Environment Department to test for lead and copper every three years, so the association chose at random 20 of its users and requested that they submit samples from their households, along with some required information about the age of the house and type of plumbing.
“We are just making sure that our water is safe and that our customers are being very well taken care of,” Niece said.
Niece said that the testing must be completed by Sept. 30, so the association mailed out form letters during the past few weeks asking some of its members to turn in a sample from their home and the completed form.
The association will be required to test for lead and copper again in 2020, Niece said.
The New Mexico Environment Department’s website indicates that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has established the lead and copper regulations for community drinking water supplies. An EPA memo on the website indicates that periodic testing is needed to determine whether corrosion in water distribution lines or household plumbing is leading to lead and copper contamination.
A 2016 report available from the Environment Department database indicates that Berrendo Cooperative’s September 2014 tests showed no violations for lead or copper levels. The report also listed no violations for other contaminants tested for in 2014 and later years.
The following reports are from the Roswell Police Department and are available at rpdp2c.org. All people arrested or cited are presumed innocent.
Police were dispatched to the corner of East Third Street and North Garden Avenue at 1:38 a.m. Tuesday in reference to an in-process burglary. Damages to a window were valued at $250.
Arrests and arrest citations
Valorie Ann Lucero, 29, was charged with failure to comply at the 300 block of Ballard Street at 11:53 a.m. Monday.
Sheila Dawn Lerma, 37, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia at the corner of East 19th Street and North Main Street at 11:23 p.m. Monday.
Jasmine Nichole Powell, 28, was charged with attempting to elude and officer at the corner of South Ohio Avenue and West Hendricks Street at 12:45 a.m. Wednesday.
Police were dispatched to the 1000 block of Plaza Del Sol at 1:05 a.m. Wednesday in reference to a criminal damage call. Damages to a car passenger window were valued at $150.
Police were dispatched to the 1500 block of North Greenwood Avenue on a larceny/hit-and-run call at 10:10 a.m. Monday. Both a car jack and stand were reported stolen.
Police were dispatched to Target at the 2700 block of North Main Street at 11:57 a.m. Monday in reference to a larceny shoplifting. A Belkin iWatch charger valued at $99 was reported stolen.
Ed Tatum, of Clovis, has been appointed by Gov. Susana Martinez to the Eastern New Mexico University Board of Regents.
A founding member of the Clovis law firm Tatum and McDowell, Tatum also was the husband of the late Susan Tatum, an ENMU regent who passed away in February.
“I am very excited and honored to assume the position of my late wife, who did wonderfully,” said Tatum. “I’m looking forward to working with the new administration at Eastern and continuing to make ENMU the best university in New Mexico and the surrounding states.”
The new president for ENMU, J.S. Elwell, said he met Tatum at an ENMU Foundation summer barbecue.
“I think he’ll do a great job, and I look forward to working with him, starting with the Sept. 14 meeting,” Elwell said.
Dan Patterson, president of the Board of Regents, said, “Mr. Tatum is very familiar with the University and its programs. In addition, his background includes a tremendous amount of leadership skills and experiences that will be beneficial to the ongoing success of the board and the University.”
Patterson added that Tatum has been a supporter of ENMU for numerous years.
Tatum served as the vice president and director of the Curry County United Way from 1972 to 1978 and president and director of the Curry County Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development in 1982. He was a member of the New Mexico Corrections Commission from 1977 to 1980.
He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1968 to 1972 and was an attorney member of the Judge Advocate General Corps for the Air Force Reserve from 1972 to 2001.
A little girl’s bicycle that was once stolen was recovered by deputies Tuesday.
The Chaves County Sheriff’s Office posted on their Facebook page that the bike was stolen from the area of West College Boulevard and the Cielo Grande Recreation Area.
The Sheriff’s Office asks the public to contact them if they know who the bike might belong to, and to provide a description of the bicycle so they are certain the bike is returned to its rightful owner.
The Chaves County Sheriff’s Office can be reached at (575) 624-6500.
Acie Homer Cates, Jr., age 87, of Amarillo, died Sunday, August 6, 2017. Mr. Cates was born in Roswell, New Mexico, July 10, 1930. He graduated from Roswell High School and attended Eastern New Mexico University’s Roswell Branch. He joined Southwestern Public Service Company in 1948. He married Marilyn Mayer in Dexter, New Mexico in 1950. In 1978 they moved to Amarillo where he worked for SPS Co. until his retirement in January 1994.
He served the Roswell community in several capacities: President of the Chaves County Safety Council, Health and Safety Chairman of the Conquistador Council and Safety Chairman of the Rio Hondo District for the Boy Scouts of America Advisory Committee to Eastern New Mexico University, Roswell Branch; New Mexico Trade and Industrial Advisory Committee; and Personnel Appeals Board for the City of Roswell. He was a long time member and deacon of The First Baptist Church of Roswell.
In Amarillo, he acted as President of the Panhandle Personnel Association; District Director of the American Society of Personnel Association; member and Chairman of the Greater Amarillo Red Cross Chapter. He served as deacon, Chairman of the Deacons and Trustee to the First Baptist Church Amarillo; Chairman of the First Baptist/Amarillo Foundation; Vice President and President of Park Place Towers, an Amarillo retirement center. Additionally, he served as Vice President and President of The Town Club.
Since his retirement, he became an avid golfer, enthusiastic world traveler, and landscape painter. It gave him great pleasure to gift his paintings to friends. Some of them reflected sites he and Marilyn visited in their travels.
He will be best remembered as a godly example for his children and grandchildren, a listening ear and wise counsel to family and friends, and for his engaging smile and wonderful sense of humor.
The family suggests memorials to the First Baptist Church, Amarillo, Texas and the First Baptist Church, Roswell, New Mexico.
Survivors include two daughters, Cynthia Edge and husband John of Spring, Texas and Julie Hargraves and husband Dr. Ronald Hargraves of Wheeling, West Virginia; a brother, Dr. Robert Cates and wife Anna, of Sedona, Arizona; a sister, Marjorie Curry and husband Kenneth of Hillsboro, Texas; four grandchildren, Amy Gonzales and husband Joseph of Lewisville, Texas, Erik Burket of Apex, North Carolina, Emily Hancock and husband David of Raleigh, North Carolina, Brian Edge of San Francisco, California; seven great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his wife, Marilyn Cates.
The family suggests memorials to the First Baptist Church, Amarillo, Texas and the First Baptist Church, Roswell, New Mexico.
Please sign our online guestbook at coxfuneralhomeamarillo.com.
Laurie Pankey-Lane was born November 1, 1965, to Alex and Betty Pankey in Albuquerque, NM and passed away Friday, August 4, 2017 of natural causes.
Laurie graduated from Goddard High School in Roswell, NM and Western NM University in Silver City, NM with a degree in accounting. She was the executive director at the Silver City Chamber of Commerce, and briefly sold real estate before moving to Roswell. She was currently employed by Berkshire Hathaway Home Services as an Associate Broker and was active in both local and state Realtors Associations.
Laurie loved hiking, biking, being in the mountains and volunteering for several organizations. She loved music and attended quite a few concerts with her beloved daughter. Laurie loved to travel and visited several European countries when her daughter lived in Madrid, Spain. Laurie is survived by her daughter Alli Lane of Silver City, NM and currently residing in Talkeetna, AK; parents Alex and Betty Pankey of Roswell; sister and brother-in-law Carrie and Kirk Weems of Roswell; nephews Drew Lucero and Quinton Weems of Roswell; and not to be left out, her beloved Yorkie Coee.
She was preceded in death by very special grandparents, Barney and Evelyn Pankey and Rollen and Margie Litchfield.
A memorial service will be held at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 805 S. Main St., on Friday, August 11, 2017 at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations to the Epilepsy Foundation 8301 Professional Place, Suite 200, Landover, MD 20785 would be greatly appreciated.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at lagronefuneralchapels.com.
Services are pending at LaGrone Funeral Chapel for Joseph “Joe” B. Archibald, age 90, of Roswell, who passed away August 8, 2017.
A further announcement will be made once arrangements have been finalized.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at lagronefuneralchapels.com.
On July 31, I went to the emergency room at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center and I was admitted to the hospital for a couple of days.
During this time, I had the best care, everyone from the ER doctors to housekeeping were very compassionate about their jobs. The ER doctor and the hospitalist doctor contacted my personal doctors about my health before making a diagnosis.
My personal doctors came by my hospital room to check on me. So what I am saying is ENMMC has very caring, compassionate employees. Thanks to everyone I came in contact with and God bless you. You are doing a great job.
Southeastern New Mexico is rightfully known for its oil and gas resources, but the economic impact of hunting and fishing in the area cannot be ignored or taken for granted.
Sportsmen contribute $453.8 million to New Mexico’s GDP and generate $100 million in tax revenue. In Chaves and Eddy counties alone, hunting and fishing generate $4 million in annual tax revenue while supporting hundreds of jobs in outdoor recreation, retail, food services and lodging. With oil and gas revenue and jobs subject to boom-bust cycles, the outdoor recreation industry is critically important where communities struggle to make ends meet.
But none of this sportsmen-derived income would be possible without the abundance of wild game and quality habitat afforded to us by the area’s large tracts of undeveloped lands surrounding and within the Guadalupe Mountains, which, unlike public lands in southeastern New Mexico, have not seen intensive oil and gas exploration.
For example, desert grasslands extending along the base of the range, near Carlsbad Caverns National Park, offer excellent hunting opportunities for Barbary sheep, mule deer, quail and doves. North of the Lincoln National Forest’s Guadalupe District, expansive grasslands support mule deer and pronghorn antelope, but they’re also important to local ranchers. The more mountainous terrain is also home to elk, turkeys, pumas and black bears, while the Black River supports a diverse population of trout, bass and catfish. These undeveloped lands are essential to our local wildlife, outdoor recreation businesses and hunting and fishing traditions.
The BLM oversees much of the fish and wildlife habitat in this area. As the agency revises its land-use plan for southeastern New Mexico, and as the Permian Basin teeters on the verge of the next big energy boom, sportsmen and women need to speak up in support of maintaining this unfragmented habitat to ensure our hunting and fishing opportunities are not put in jeopardy.
With forward-thinking, balanced management, we can continue to reap the benefits of responsible oil and gas development, while at the same time maintaining and improving access for hunting, fishing and other recreational activities that are also critical to our way of life.
Saw your article by Merilee Dannemann in Tuesday’s RDR, “No excuse for voting commission” and had to comment, again.
Liberals are the first to scream “voter fraud” and then want to stop any and all attempts to stop it. After the last general election, who was claiming voter fraud put Trump in office? The Democrats, who are trying to make sure there is no voter fraud? Trump. Who is claiming Trump’s attempts are a subversive attempt to stifle minority votes? The liberals. Who is trying to do something about the problem? Trump.
All the liberals can do is try and block the president at every turn, hoping that the American voting public will see it as a Trump failure to lead. What is so wrong with making sure there is no voter fraud? One person, one vote, isn’t that what we want? You have to show identification to buy alcohol, prescription medications and plane tickets, why not for voter registration?
Liberals are not worried about creating another big government database. They are the “big government advocates” remember? It’s only when Trump proposes one that they get indignant. Still your friend…
What a historical treat provided by Briana Hodge in Sunday’s RDR Vistas section!
She got her hands on the 1915 Roswell High School annual. At least that’s what we called them when I was in high school. This publication of El Coyote went to press only two years after the school’s inception when the formation of a football team was wanted but unachievable due to a scarcity of male students.
Two notable features of the yearbook were the first person (Coyote) personification of a Coyote and an endless rhyming poem about teachers seen through the eyes of their students. The Coyote’s description of a broom as a “stick that had a lot of grass growing on one end” did not go unnoticed, showing that 102-year-old humor can still lift an eyebrow.
Kirk chosen as new president of Roswell school board; Classes delayed at University High School due to water line break
The Roswell school board on Tuesday night chose a new school board president in the wake of the abrupt resignation of the school board’s former president, although much of the discussion at Tuesday night’s meeting was about the delay of classes at University High School due to a water line break.
The Roswell Independent School District Board of Education voted unanimously to elect Mona Kirk as the new president of the school board, Ruben James Sanchez as vice president and Alan Gedde as secretary.
Kirk had been the school board’s vice president. Gedde will remain the school board’s secretary.
The school board also discussed filling the vacancy created by the July 28 resignation of Nicole R. Austin.
Interim superintendent Susan Sanchez said the school board has 45 days from the date of Austin’s resignation to fill the District 2 position. Kirk said the school district is accepting applications from community members interested in serving on the school board. School leaders said letters of interest and résumés will be accepted until 4 p.m. Aug. 18, and the school board will interview the finalists in open session.
Questions for prospective school board applicants will be posted in the Roswell Daily Record, school officials said.
“That’s a process that has been done in the past,” Kirk said. “Then start the interviews in late August.”
Those interested in succeeding Austin on the school board must reside within District 2.
District 2 lies in northwest Roswell, between Berrendo Road and West Second Street, primarily west of Main Street.
School board members serve without compensation.
Less than six months after running successfully for the seat in February, Austin said in a statement two weeks ago her decision to resign was due to a need to balance priorities in her life.
“I have found that I cannot give the time and effort needed to be an effective board member and remain dedicated to my priorities,” Austin said in the statement. “Because of this, I must step aside.”
Austin originally joined the board in January 2016 to take over the unexpired term of James Waldrip, who resigned in December 2015 after 13 years due to health concerns. She then won the seat in February, overcoming a challenge by former RISD educator Louis Mestas. Shortly after the election, she was chosen as president.
Ruben Sanchez thanked Austin for her service on the school board at Tuesday night’s meeting. He said Austin would be missed.
“It is a thankless job and it is very stressful at times,” Ruben Sanchez said. “There’s going to be times where you’ve lost your sleep and you’ve lost your appetite on things that are going on. Sometimes, there are hard decisions that you have to make.”
Gedde also thanked Austin for her service and said he was sad to see her go.
Edwards said Austin had a different style of leadership.
“I really respected that lady, her heart was, I would say, in the right place,” Edwards said.
Edwards said he tried to convince Austin not to resign from the school board.
“She made her decision, and I tried to talk her into staying because that’s how much respect I have for her,” Edwards said. “So, good luck and we’ll be seeing her.”
Kirk said resigning was a difficult decision for Austin.
“When we ran for the school board, it was a very difficult time,” said Kirk, who has filled in as president since Austin resigned. “When she agreed to take on the presidency, that was another burden, it’s huge. It’s very time-consuming. I don’t know how anyone does it and holds a full-time job.”
Kirk applauded Austin for putting her family first.
“That took a lot. And as we move forward, team, we’ll get there,” Kirk said. “We’ll move forward and we’ll make the best of it, and thank you, Ms. Austin, for your time served.”
In other news Tuesday night, Susan Sanchez said classes set to begin Thursday at University High School would have to be delayed until Monday due to a water line break at the school.
School officials said the water line break was discovered in a bathroom shared by students and faculty.
Susan Sanchez said automated calls will be made to parents and guardians to alert them of the change of schedule, and the notice will also be posted on the school district’s website. She said Early College High School classes will not be affected.
While classes will start Monday at University High School for the 2017-18 school year, school officials said a date for completion of repairs was not known, and that the school will work around the problem.
Projects editor Misty Choy can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 305, or email@example.com.
Unharmed family works to rise above ashes
“I’ve been crying all morning that I think I’m out of tears.”
Daughter Krystal Palma said she didn’t cry because she was sad from the fire that claimed her mother’s home. She cried because her mom was there when it happened.
“I couldn’t believe she was alive,” Palma said. “We could’ve been having a whole different kind of conversation right now and I just — I can’t even believe it right now. I’ve never felt so blessed and so cursed in the same day.”
An overloaded electrical outlet is believed to be the cause of the fire that caused extensive damage to a Roswell home at the 600 block of North Ohio Avenue Tuesday morning.
The Roswell Fire Department’s public information officer Todd Wildermuth said firefighters received a call at about 8:30 a.m. in reference to a structure fire.
The only person inside the house when the fire started was 57-year-old Rita Brown, who lived alone.
Wildermuth said the woman got out of the house before fire crews arrived.
“Firefighters had (the) fire under control by 9:25 a.m.,” he said. “(The) fire marshal believes cause of fire was an overloaded electrical outlet in (the) back bedroom.”
Palma said her mother got a call from work in the early morning telling her she didn’t have to come into work.
“Then she came into here to have some coffee, and then everything went up,” Palma said. “I felt like if that lady wouldn’t have called mom, or she just had to work, or you know — I was worried about her getting smoke inhalation and dying before she even burned up.”
Palma said she never thought an incident like this would occur.
“Things like this, you don’t think will happen to you, or to people that you know,” she said. “You realize the loss and what everybody else felt whenever you saw them going through it and it’s just — you know how they feel and it’s just unimaginable.
“(You think) they only happen in movies, or to people that are around the corner or miles away from you in bigger cities. But it doesn’t. Things like this happen to normal people all the time.”
Palma said her mother has lived through some of the most devastating incidents she’s ever seen, including being a stroke victim and losing her husband.
“She is a living testament to ‘God gives you what you can handle.’ She’s strong enough to deal with it,” Palma said. “If I live to be half as amazing as my mom is, then I’ll be all the better for it.”
Palma said she and her husband moved out from her mother’s home five months ago, but was planning to move back.
“We moved in and helped her get a little bit better and things, and then we went ahead and moved out,” Palma said. “But now, she’s going to come live with me. I’m going to take care of her just the same as I always had.
“I’ve always taken care of her, and I always will.”
Palma said her mother is still taking in what happened.
“I think she’s trying to comprehend everything that’s happened the last few years,” Palma said. “I think she’s wondering why and — a mix of emotions.
While Palma doesn’t quite know how start putting the pieces of life back together, she said her mother has helped her overcome adversity.
“She passed me the torch, but I kind of had to give it back to her to re-light it a couple of times, but that’s OK,” she joked. “At least she’s still here to light the torch.”
Following the fire, Brown’s shoes, and much of her clothing, was burned. Palma said someone gave her a pair of shoes, another resident, $100 and a cup of coffee from someone else. Palma was taken by surprise.
“It’s like, ‘I don’t even know you people,’ Palma said. “You don’t know if we deserved it or didn’t deserve it, but you think that we deserve your kindness.
“You never know how many people care and how loving people can be.”
Brown said she had been living in her home for 18 years.
“This has always been good block though,” she said. “That’s why I’ve lived here for so long.”
The RFD came by the singed home later Tuesday in reference to a smoldering within the building. After they responded and helped, a firefighter told the family they hope things get better.
“They put their lives at risk too,” Palma said. “They’re saying they hope our lives get better, and they’ve just put their lives in jeopardy to make ours better, so I hope their day gets better too.”
Krystal Palma’s sister, Ariella Palma, said her family, friends and others are doing what they can to help. She created a GoFundMe campaign to help aid with Brown’s expenses.
“She lost clothes, shoes, blankets, but most importantly — her house,” Ariella Palma wrote. “The house is a complete loss and now our family is needing to come up with some money to cover the cost of a place to stay.
“The donations will go to a new home and, hopefully, replace what was lost in the fire. ”
To contribute to the fundraiser, visit gofundme.com/a-home-for-rita.
Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whether people bully others, are bullied or witness frequent incidents, they are likely to suffer.
People who experience intense bullying often experience depression, anxiety, health complaints and lower academic performances and school participation, according to an anti-bullying website of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Meanwhile, those who do the bullying are more likely to have alcohol and drug abuse issues, criminal incidents, school difficulties and relationship problems. Bystanders to frequent incidents also report mental health problems, increased alcohol and tobacco use, and problems with school or work attendance.
A group of Artesia nonprofits have decided to hold a community event Friday at the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center about bullying, with the primary purpose of aiding adults who work to help youth involved in bullying.
Bullying is defined as repeated physical, verbal, written or visual acts intended to hurt, embarrass, threaten, intimidate, isolate or disempower people. Typically, bullying involves a real or perceived imbalance of power, according to the stopbullying.gov website.
The event begins with a 4:30 p.m. workshop meant for people working with area nonprofits or organizations serving youth. Reservations for that event are required.
Then a fictional movie “Cyber Bullying” will be shown starting at 5:30 p.m., with local youth workers participating in a question-and-answer panel discussion following the movie. The movie is suitable for people 14 and older. The public can attend both the movie and panel discussion.
“If I had my wish, the Ocotillo would be filled,” said Stacy Heacox, regional match supervisor and Artesia director for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern New Mexico.
Heacox said that the event came about in discussions with some volunteers with her organization who said they thought people could use additional training and support in helping youth deal with bullying.
“Then I had someone approach me and say, ‘I’m interested in that topic. I was bullied at work and I quit my job because of it,’ so it grew from there,” she said.
Sponsored by the Artesia National Bank, the event is a joint effort of several Artesia groups, including the Artesia Art Council, which coordinates art and arts education programs and manages the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center; Grammy’s House, a domestic violence support organization; 702 4 U, a youth outreach group; Faith Baptist Church; and a school representative with the Artesia chapter of Altrusa, a leadership and community improvement group.
“I hope people get a better understanding of how to help people handle these situations, whether they are the bully or the one doing the bullying,” said Lauren Austin, the education director for the Artesia Arts Council, which is making its first foray into the anti-bullying effort.
Heacox said the panel discussion will include people who have years of experience dealing with youth on the issue.
“If you teach a kid how to handle these problems, then it doesn’t necessarily become something that is overwhelming for them,” she said.
Heacox said that New Mexico has made strides in recent years to develop laws aimed at preventing and punishing school bullying and cyberbullying, which occurs online or through social media. But, she adds, even as society becomes more adept at dealing with problem behaviors, bullying evolves, too.
“When I was a kid, it wasn’t as invasive,” she said. “It was something that happened at school with maybe a single person involved and that was it. But now, because technology has changed, it can be very invasive. It can mean receiving a group text message or being harassed on social media.”
Heacox said the “Cyber Bully” movie teaches a powerful message about how sensitive some youth can be to comments made on social media, affected much more profoundly and harmed more severely than those making the comments might think.
Reservations for the event can be made on the Artesia Art Council’s website or by calling 746-4212. The Ocotillo Performing Arts Center is at 310 W. Main St. in Artesia.
Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at email@example.com.
New Mexico State Sen. George Muñoz will seek the Democratic nomination for Commissioner of Public Lands.
Born and raised in Gallup, Muñoz is a businessman and a three-term state senator representing Cibola and McKinley counties and part of the Navajo Nation.
“For the past 9 years, I have worked to advance real solutions within the state Legislature to improve education, create new jobs and enhance the quality of life for all New Mexicans,” said Muñoz. “As Commissioner of Public Lands, I pledge to bring that same experience and approach to the State Land Office and hold it accountable to the citizens of New Mexico.”
Incumbent Aubrey Dunn, a Republican elected to the office in 2014, has announced his intention to run for the U.S. House of Representatives District 2 seat now held by Steve Pearce (R-Hobbs). Pearce has said he will run for New Mexico governor in 2018 after Gov. Susana Martinez’s term is up.
Munoz’s Democratic challengers at this point include Garrett VeneKlasen of Santa Fe, executive director of the New Mexico Wildlife Federation, and Ray Powell of Albuquerque, a veterinarian who has been State Land Commissioner twice before, from 1993 to 2002 and 2011 to 2014.
Muñoz said he will focus his campaign for commissioner on identifying and securing sustainable ways to increase income for all of New Mexico’s public schools — from fully-funded early childhood education to the state’s colleges and universities.
“The Legislature has been unable to take care of our most vulnerable citizens, but, if elected commissioner of Public Lands, I will work to find real solutions to help drive our state’s economy and ensure that our schools have the resources they need to give all of our children a bright future in New Mexico.”
Muñoz said his experience as a voting member of the Legislative Finance Committee has brought him an understanding of the state’s budgetary issues.
“I fully understand the budgetary constraints New Mexico faces, which is why I support and encourage the development of renewable energy projects on state trust lands. Creating jobs and diversifying our state’s revenue is a win-win for kids and the economy,” said Muñoz. “I support all forms of responsible energy production on state trust lands — it’s how we provide funding for our schools, teachers and kids.
But we must also look to the future and understand that New Mexico has unlimited resources in solar and wind. Together with oil and gas, we can provide long-term solutions to our budget concerns. I will work to encourage energy companies and utilities to develop these vital resources, create good jobs and to invest in the future of New Mexico.”
The State Land Office oversees more than 9 million acres of surface land and 13 million acres of minerals that are intended to help public schools, higher education and other beneficiaries.
Revenues from state trust lands come from oil and natural gas royalties, grazing rights and energy leases. The Commissioner of Public Lands has authority to allow activities on state trust lands and to authorize land exchanges when in the best interest of the trust.
Muñoz describes himself as an avid conservationist and sportsman. He also said that he has worked closely with the Navajo Nation leadership.
“As a lifelong New Mexican, I appreciate the rich diversity that makes our state unique and will build on those values as Commissioner of Public Lands.”
Muñoz is married to Sharmyn, an educator in McKinley County. The couple has two sons, Zane and Landon.