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Leading the way with Leadership Roswell


Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

Sometimes it’s not a bad idea to take advice from your little sister.

Roswell resident Margaret Kennard decided to sign up for Leadership Roswell — a program that develops leadership skills and expands networking opportunities — after her sister Nicole Rogers, a lieutenant at the Chaves County Detention Center, graduated from the 2014 class.

Kennard signed up for the next class, which graduated in 2015.

“She had so many good things to say about it,” Kennard said.

Kennard was elected president of the class of 2015 and decided to stay involved with the group after graduating.

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Local attorney and newspaper columnist Rick Kraft has been executive director of the organization since 1992.

Kennard is the program director. One of her responsibilities is to help Kraft prepare the classes for the upcoming year, which are held one Friday a month from September through May.

She attends every class and said that Kraft has been a good model.

“I think that for me it was a launch pad to hone my own leadership skills and use them in other aspects of my life,” she said. “I am involved in other organizations and what I learned in Leadership Roswell has benefited me there.”

Kennard has volunteered with Chaves County Pregnancy Resource Center. She is involved with the Chaves County Federated Republican Women, the Republican Party of Chaves County, the DWI Planning Committee and the Leadership Roswell Alumni Association.

Her father, K.C. Rogers, is a magistrate judge in Chaves County. The Leadership Roswell Alumni Association is in the public eye during election years because it is one of the sponsors of the public forums for local candidates. As a candidate in 2014, Rogers was interviewed by Kraft.

She said being a part of Leadership Roswell can benefit residents whether they have just moved to Roswell or have lived here all of their life.

“You can find out a lot about what goes on in Roswell and Chaves County,” she said. “There was a lot I found out about that I didn’t know.”

She added: “Relationships built among classmates are those that last a lifetime. Networking is not an accurate or strong enough word to describe the bonds that are formed within the program.”

Kennard was born in Silver City and moved to Roswell in the early 1980s when her father, a state police investigator in narcotics at that time, was transferred from Lordsburg to Roswell.

She graduated from Dexter High School and holds a degree from Eastern New Mexico University in criminal justice with a minor in sociology.

Kennard and her husband, John, have six children ranging in ages from 7 to 21. Their names are Gauge, Kevin, Victoria, Asper, Clayton and Bode. Her grandmother is Loretta Pat Johnston.

Though she believes Roswell is a great place to live and raise children, she said the city is not without its problems.

“I think there are problems with crime and drugs,” she said. “Some of the negative aspects of Roswell come from the breakdown of families. Until we address that issue we may always have to deal with that.”

She ended the interview on a positive note: “Roswell has a lot of positive aspects. It is a small-community feeling I think that people really care about each other.”

Community News reporter Timothy P. Howsare can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 311, or vistas@rdrnews.com.

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