New Mexico First Blog

New Mexico First Announces Award Recipients in Bipartisan Collaboration, Journalistic Excellence, Civic Leadership and Lifetime Achievement

Spirit Awardees to be recognized at June “First Forum.”

The nonpartisan, public-policy organization New Mexico First will recognize public officials, journalists, and civic leaders who make a positive impact on New Mexico.

The ceremony will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 6.

Awardees were selected for addressing serious problems, advancing critical programs, or raising awareness around major issues facing New Mexicans.

The Spirit Awards will be presented as part of the 2019 First Forum Lecture Series in Albuquerque.

“New Mexico First is proud to recognize lawmakers, journalists and community leaders who put the people of New Mexico first and work to find good solutions to the challenges we face,” said former state senator Cynthia Nava, selection committee chair. “This award shines the spotlight on hard-working role models who put good policy or fair coverage above partisan politics.”

2019 SPIRIT AWARDEES:

Spirit of Bipartisanship

  • N.M. State Representative Rebecca Dow (R)
  • N.M. State Senator Clemente Sanchez (D)

Spirit of Journalistic Excellence

  • Trip Jennings, Executive Director, New Mexico In Depth

Spirit of Civic Leadership

  • Katherine Freeman, President & CEO, United Way of Santa Fe County
  • Combined staff of KOB-TV 4

Lifetime Achievement

  • United States Senator Tom Udall (D)

The award recipients were chosen by a bipartisan committee including Terri Nikole Baca, Heather Balas, Rob Black, John Garcia, Ricardo Gonzales, Clint Harden and Nava, who chairs the committee.

In addition to bestowing the awards, New Mexico First will feature its 2019 First Forum, which Nava called a state tradition, which enables New Mexicans to hear experts speak about timely public policy topics. This year’s forum is titled “Sustainable Journalism: Preserving the Fourth Estate.” Nava said organizers of the biennial lecture series expect a spirited discussion on strengthening journalism throughout New Mexico. According to the organization’s website, panelists will address how New Mexico can sustain and grow a powerful, instructive and trusted press, with insights on the next generation of journalists and rural media.

This year’s event will be held at the University of New Mexico’s Keller Hall, which is located within the Popejoy Hall complex. Tickets are $30 each and may be purchased by clicking here.

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