In October of 2000, Roxanne, the kids and I moved to New Mexico. As is mentioned in the “About Me” section on the right hand side of this blog, we moved here to be near family. We were married in New Mexico in 1995, but continued living in California until a job opportunity opened here.
That job opportunity was to serve as the President of Junior Achievement of New Mexico (JANM), and what an opportunity it was! It was truly amazing to get paid to work with business and community leaders, as well as parents, volunteers and educators to teach students to value and understand business, economics and the free enterprise system, which is a cornerstone of our Democracy.
During my tenure, between November 1, 2000 and July 31, 2004, I worked with extraordinary people throughout the state to build the organization from reaching approximately 7,000 students a year to reaching over 14,000 students every year. The efforts of our ever-growing number of volunteers and sponsors garnered national attention. But more importantly, it achieved local goals.
It was my six years with JA (two in CA and four in NM) that taught me a lot about building and running a volunteer driven, privately funded, mission focused organization – much like the Bernalillo County GOP.
My time as a paid staff person with JA came to an end in July of 2004. At that point, I had come to the conclusion that I would rather be in a position to donate my time and money to various organizations and causes than to work as a paid employee. So, I launched a business venture three years ago, but to this day, I still continue to volunteer in New Mexico classrooms for JA, as well as donate money and time to this and other very worthwhile causes.
Below is a partial list of my political activities since arriving in New Mexico:
- Heather Wilson for Congress, Finance Committee 2005 – 2006
- Member of the NM Delegation to 2004 Republican National Convention
- Bernalillo County Small Business Coalition Chairman, Bush/Cheney 2004
- Appointed by the U.S. Treasury Secretary and the IRS Commissioner to be New Mexico’s representative on the National Taxpayer Advocacy Panel 2002 – 2005
- Chairman of Small Business E-filing Committee
- Vice-chairman of the Region 6 Committee (representing the West)
- Member of the Executive Committee
- 2004 Candidate for State Representative, House District 22
- Political Blogger 2004 – present
And some other community commitments:
- AYSO Soccer Coach 2004 – Present
- Albuquerque Del Norte Rotary Club 2001 – Present
- United Way Young Leaders Society
- Association of Commerce and Industry
- Vice-chair of the Education Committee 2002-2004
- Member of the Taxation, Economic Development and Education Committees 2006-07
- Middle Rio Grande Business Education Collaborative 2002-2004
- New Mexico Business Roundtable for Educational Excellence
- 2004 NM Business Weekly 40 Under 40
- March of Dimes, Walk-a-thon Fundraising Committee 2005
- Popejoy Hall’s Primavera Ball, Marketing Committee 2006 – Present
This is by no means a complete list of all the activities I’ve been involved in over the last six and a half years in New Mexico. However, I think it provides a good indication of the level of my commitment to our community, our state and our future.