5:30 PM Reception
6:30 PM Program
Location(s): National Hispanic Cultural Center, 1701 4th St SW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Across the nation, Americans sound an alarm that political polarization makes governing, neighboring or even Facebooking increasingly grim. People's faith in a united nation has perhaps never been so low. While such challenges also exist in New Mexico, leaders in our state can choose a different path – and many of them do.
Nearly 350 New Mexicans joined New Mexico First for an exciting evening on strengthening and rewarding a healthy democracy in our Land of Enchantment.
The organization’s biennial First Forum this year featured retired U.S. Senators Tom Daschle and Trent Lott. Two of the most prominent senators of recent time, these men have devoted almost 60 years of public service between them. Lott and Daschle came together from opposite sides of the aisle to itemize damaging forces – such as the permanent campaign, unprecedented money, or the 24/7 news cycle – and offered practical recommendations that point a way forward. Most crucially, they reminded New Mexicans of the principles enshrined in the Constitution, the necessity of debate, and the imperative of compromise. These longstanding policymakers argued it will take leadership, vision, and courage to repair American politics. They are co-authors of Crisis Point: Why We Must – and How We Can – Overcome Our Broken Politics in Washington and Across America.
New Mexico First is proud to host First Forum because we have championed collaborative policymaking for three decades. (Yes, it’s our 30th anniversary!)
Every other year, our public policy organization organizes the First Forum lecture series to highlight important issues facing our nation and New Mexico.
Ticket sales from the event provide essential
monetary resources for the nonprofit. This educational event gives people in our state the opportunity to hear national leading figures address topics
unique to their individual expertise.
Tom Daschle, a Democrat, was U.S. Senator for South Dakota from 1987 to 2005. During his tenure, served as both majority
and minority leader.
Trent Lott, a Republican, was U.S. Senator for Mississippi from 1989 to 2007. As a senator, he held various positions
including majority leader and minority leader.
Sam Donaldson, retired ABC Newsman, will moderate. Mr. Donaldson has covered national news for decades, including serving as chief White House Correspondent.
| Johnny Montoya
Funding support of this important event was critical to fulfilling the important mission of New Mexico First. We would not be able to hold the event without the generous contributions from our community! We thank the following companies for their support!
Commissioner Wayne Johnson
The Blackwell Family
The Kirby Family
New Mexico First recognized five outstanding leaders for their exceptional commitments to collaboration and effective policy.
Representative James E. Smith, New Mexico Legislature (R)
Senator Daniel Ivey-Soto, New Mexico Legislature (D)
Excellence in Education
Representative Stephanie Garcia Richard, New Mexico Legislature (D)
Up and Comer
Representative Jim Dines, New Mexico Legislature (R)
Lifetime Achievement Award
Sherman McCorkle, retired executive and longstanding civic leader
| Rep. Dines
The nominations were submitted by New Mexicans statewide. The awardees were chosen by a bipartisan committee including Ricardo Gonzales, Heather Balas, Jason Espinoza, Clint Harden, Hayley Klein, Johnny Montoya, Cynthia Nava, Jennifer Riordan, George Rivera and Peter Winograd.