Highlands University Wins Cowboy Category for Second Year in Santa Fe Fiesta Parade

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Highlands University rodeo athletes Callie Moore, Robert Martinez and Lynnelle Logan lead the way for the university’s float in the Santa Fe Fiesta parade Sept. 13. The Highlands’ float won first place for the second year in a row in the Cowboy category.

Highlands University Wins Cowboy Category for Second Year in Santa Fe Fiesta Parade


New Mexico Highlands University students from the rodeo team and student ambassador program won first place in the Cowboy float category for the second year in a row at the annual Santa Fe Fiesta Parade Sept. 13.

The renowned Fiesta is in its 297th year. The recruitment office at Highlands University coordinated the Cowboy float for the parade.

“It was great to see the collaboration between various student organizations that put together another winning Highlands’ float for the parade,” said Gil Gonzalez, director of the university’s recruitment office.

Student ambassadors who were part of the float include Rianne Trujillo, Ilene Madrid, LaTanya Burbank, Virginia Veruette, Tanya Ruiz, Brad Radeke and Julia Andrada.

This year, the university’s Native American Queen, Kaylena Abeyta, also joined the float.

Highlands University rodeo athletes who rode on horseback for the parade include Justin Mascarenas, Robert Martinez, Lynnelle Logan and Callie Moore. Rodeo Coach Jon Peek joined his team on horseback. 

Seven more rodeo athletes showed their Cowboy pride on the float, including Jackie Smith, Sammi Lane, Natalie Burke, Annie Chroninger, Cathy Long, Jesse Estrada and Dirk Tavenner.

“My rodeo team had a great time representing Highlands in the parade,” Peek said. “We were glad to have the chance to raise awareness about our university, and our team.”