NMHU Associate VP Denise Montoya Named Vice-Chair of LANL Foundation Board

Photo of Denise Montoya

Dr. Denise Montoya

Montoya is working to bring more resources to rural communities in Northern New Mexico

November 8, 2022

Dr. Denise Montoya, New Mexico Highlands University’s Associate Vice President for Finance, Administration, and Government Relations was named the new Vice-Chair of the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) Foundation Board. Montoya served as the LANL Foundation Board’s Secretary prior to stepping into her new role. As Vice-Chair, Montoya is focused on increased outreach and support for education in Northern New Mexico including in Mora and San Miguel counties.

Montoya sees her position as Vice-Chair as an avenue to further strengthen the relationship between the Foundation and the historically underserved rural populations in communities like Mora and others in San Miguel county. “My role on the Board is to serve with some of the best community and business leaders overseeing investments to ensure sustainability of the organization and to continue advancing the mission to inspire excellence in education throughout Northern New Mexico through innovative programming, collaboration, and advocacy,” Montoya said.

The LANL Foundation is a nonprofit that invests in education, learning, and human potential in Northern New Mexico. The Foundation is dedicated to improving education by funding grants and scholarship programs in seven counties in New Mexico: Rio Arriba, Los Alamos, Sandoval, San Miguel, Mora, Santa Fe, and Taos.

Jenny Parks, President and CEO of the LANL Foundation, said the Board is lucky to have Montoya serving as Vice-Chair: “Her experience, expertise, keen intelligence and passion for New Mexico students comes through in all our board discussions and is very helpful in the leading the Foundation to reach our goals and make progress on our strategies.”

A current foundation initiative focused on Mora and San Miguel counties is a two-year, $40,000 grant funding the Environmental Education Association of New Mexico’s work in partnership with NMHU’s Conservation Science Center (CSC) to host environmental education symposiums and develop a community of practice.

Additionally, the LANL Foundation Board has awarded $300,000 in grant funding to students experiencing housing insecurity in Las Vegas and Cuba; secured three large grants for wildfire relief for students at NMHU and for all communities in Mora and San Miguel affected by the Hermits Peak/Calf Canyon wildfires; awarded two grants to support a partnership initiative between the CSC at Highlands, Mora Independent Schools, and Collins Lake Ranch; awarded $25,000 to Mora Independent Schools; awarded $30,000 to NMHU Foundation, and developed a Friday Outdoor School program through NMHU’s CSC to provide 20 days of outdoor learning experiences to schools in Northern New Mexico throughout the school year.

“The staff at the Foundation are passionate about making a difference in education. I am proud of the work they do serving Northern New Mexico students,” Montoya said. “I am fortunate to serve in this capacity with such high caliber of professionals committed to all New Mexicans having the skills and confidence they need to be self-sufficient, lifelong learners.”