Las Vegas, N.M. The New Mexico Senate confirmed Frank Marchi’s reappointment to the Highlands University Board of Regents March 3 and John Ramon Vigil as the new student regent.
Marchi, a lifelong business leader in New Mexico, was first appointed a regent by Gov. Susana Martínez in 2011. His second term extends through Dec. 31, 2022. The governor nominated Vigil for a two-year term that ends Dec. 31, 2018.
“I am so pleased that Mr. Frank Marchi has been reappointed to the Board of Regents of Highlands University,” said Highlands President Sam Minner. “Frank brings deep expertise to this role including substantial financial acumen. I have enjoyed working with him over the last year and am glad that I will continue to report to him and the other members of the board into the future.”
Marchi had a distinguished career as an insurance executive for Manuel Lujan Insurance, Inc. in Albuquerque. He was a chief operating officer, president, and served on the board of directors for the firm. He is retired now.
He started working at the Manuel Lujan Insurance, Inc. after graduating from Highlands in 1967 with a business degree. His grandfather, Manuel Lujan, Sr., established the insurance agency in 1926. The business was merged with Hub Insurance in 2014.
Marchi was a founding member of the Valencia County Chamber of Commerce, the Santa Fe Hispano Chamber of Commerce, and the Taos County Hispano Chamber of Commerce.
His other business experience includes being a founder and investor for the Bank of Belen in 1992, now named MyBank. In 1997, Marchi was also a founder and investor for Bank 1st in Albuquerque and was on its board of directors.
Marchi was named named a Highlands distinguished alumnus in 1997 and has a long history of serving the university. He was a founding member of the Highlands Alumni Association and served on the Highlands Foundation board of directors for more than 25 years.
“We have a Board of Regents that works well together,” Marchi said. “We’ve accomplished a lot in the last six years and have more work to do that will continue to have a positive impact on our students’ education and lives.”
Vigil, an Española, New Mexico, native, is a senior majoring in history with a minor in management. Upon graduation, he plans to pursue an MBA at Highlands.
“Mr. Vigil impressed me with his commitment to Highlands and his understanding of the challenges we face as well as the many assets we have at this institution,” Minner said. “I look forward to working closely with him.”
Kimberly Blea, dean of students at Highlands, said Vigil is a strong leader in his student government service.
“As president pro-tem of the student senate, John Ramon is a dedicated advocate for students,” Blea said. “He has the ability to generate thoughtful discussion on issues that impact students.”
Vigil said that that in his three years as a student senator, it has been rewarding to interact with students and work to address their concerns and listen to their ideas.
“Being on the Board of Regents will give me the opportunity to have a broader impact for students, staff and faculty,” Vigil said. “As a student regent, it’s important to have the perspective of looking out for the entire campus population.”
Vigil’s other service to Highlands includes working as a peer adviser for the Academic Support Office and Career Services Office, among other positions.
Vigil is also active in the Española Valley. He has served on the Española Fiesta Council, Downtown Action Dream of Española board of directors, and the Española Farolito Planning Committee, among other organizations.