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Aggie Uptown: NMSU unveils future development plans

Aggie Uptown: NMSU unveils future development plans

LAS CRUCES – After enduring about $30 million in budget cuts over the past few years, New Mexico State University on Friday unveiled plans to lean heavily on public-private partnerships and long-term leases to fill its coffers. Some of those proposals were unveiled at a public meeting Friday morning at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum.

“It’s exciting for us,” said Debra Hicks, chair of NMSU’s Board of Regents. “When we look at the budget, and shortfalls that we have in the state of New Mexico, and we look at investments that can be made that generate reoccurring revenue.”

NMSU Chancellor Garrey Carruthers told the audience none of the investments being proposed are being made by the university, but rather “by people who believe in the vision and opportunities available.”

The development is being overseen by Aggie Development Inc., a corporation created in 2014 under the University Research Park and Economic Development Act to manage NMSU’s real estate and water assets, as well as create of public-private partnerships.

Scott Eschenbrenner, president and CEO of Aggie Development said plans for development have been in the works since last fall, and the entire project includes about 2,300 acres of university-owned land.

Aggie Uptown

Phase I of the development project involves 36 acres of land east of I-25 near the intersection of University Avenue and Telshor Boulevard, where the New Mexico State Police office once stood.

The development would be called Aggie Uptown.

It will include 16 acres of commercial development, 20 acres to be used for medical offices, and an extension of Telshor Boulevard and Terrace Drive south into the new development.

Phase II includes mixed-use commercial development, research and academic program development, and the reconfiguration of the NMSU Golf Course from 18 holes to a nine-hole course, and the addition of a brand new 18-hole signature course.

Eschenbrenner unveiled plans for the new course, designed by acclaimed golf course designer Jim Engh, a four-time winner of the America’s Best New Golf Course Award. Engh is known for his tendency to minimize environmental impact, and Engh’s courses typically include less than 90 acres of grass to maintain, Eschenbrenner said.

Any expansion or reconfiguration to the golf course would have to be privately funded.

Phase II also would include the addition of a continuum-of-care, assisted living facility, 39 acres of residential development and an additional 29.9 acres for commercial use.

Phase III will explore institutional research development opportunities and a possible expansion of Sonoma Ranch Boulevard south of Dripping Springs Road.

Doña Ana County Commissioner Ben Rawson, whose district includes all of the proposed developments, attended Friday’s meeting. He said he is pleased NMSU is holding public meetings to share the development plans, but has one concern.

“Obviously, there’s a little bit of concern with no property tax revenue from these developments, and how that how that affects competition,” Rawson said. “We’ll see how the process goes, and I’m glad they’re seeking public input.”

Arrowhead Park

Wayne Savage, executive director of Arrowhead Park, laid out a master plan for the southwest corner of the NMSU main campus. As the Arrowhead Park development expands, it is expected to include “walkable areas, water features and gathering spaces,” Savage said.

A new office space, called Arrowhead Place, will serve as the headquarters for Arrowhead Park and will provide offices for startups. It is expected to open in April 2018.

The Arrowhead Park master plan is broken out into five “districts,” Savage explained. These are innovation, research, a creative campus, retail and a “town center,” which Savage explained is critical to attracting innovators.

“This came about in looking at our peers in the university world and research park development,” Savage told the Sun-News. “More and more, in order to attract and retain the talent that is innovating, creating new technologies, and generating the kind of economic impact we are looking for, you have to create significant places, vibrant spaces.

Savage hopes to have approval from the Federal Highway Administration to create an Arrowhead Park exit on I-10. Doing so would transform Arrowhead Park, now tucked in a remote corner of the main campus, into a southern gateway to NMSU. After approval is granted, NMSU will have to find funding for the project.

Improving the mixed-use development of the south campus is similar to plans to revitalize downtown Las Cruces, development models for the Park Ridge Medical Center and the medical districts on the east side of town, Savage noted.

“I’m looking forward to that because I feel it will dramatically improve the demand for our land-use opportunities,” Savage said. “But we have a lot of work to do in the meantime.”

Improving the main campus

Glen Haubold, NMSU’s associate vice president for facilities and services, said a new 10-year master plan for the main campus is in the works. The plan will likely involve looking at infill projects, better utilizing open spaces and maximizing efficiency on the use of the university facilities.

“We really need to look at how we use space more efficiently,” Haubold said. “The biggest thing for us on campus is identifying opportunities to share. If we can begin to share classrooms and conference rooms, and schedule better, we’ll need fewer facilities. And if we have fewer facilities, I think it follows that we’ll have better facilities — because we can take better care of them, and make them state-of-the-art.”

Carruthers told the Sun-News scheduling software should help solve that.

“We invested in a software program called Ad Astra, which helps you assign classroom and boardroom space more efficiently,” Carruthers said. “We’ve owned it for five or six years, and we finally got people to understand we need to use it.”

Carruthers said Ad Astra is also helpful in an emergency evacuation scenario because it gives officials a more accurate idea of how many people are in a building.

“We have plenty of capacity,” Carruthers said. “We’ve just never had it organized very well.”

The new master plan will likely include efforts toward moving parking lots to the perimeters of campus, and better utilizing the spaces near the center of campus.

Andrea Tawney, vice president of University Advancement, said efforts are underway to renovate and replace D.W. Williams Hall, which houses the art department and the University Art Gallery. About $800,000 has been raised through private donations, and an additional $22.5 for the project is expected from the passage of General Obligation Bond C in this year’s general election. The passage of the bond will not increase residents’ property taxes, Tawney said.

To follow these projects as they develop, or to offer input, visit To see a presentation from the meeting, with drawings and proposed ideas, visit this story at

Damien Willis may be reached at 575-541-5468, or@damienwillis on Twitter

SBA Awards Grants to 21 Universities and Organizations  To Support R&D, Small Business Innovation

SBA Awards Grants to 21 Universities and Organizations To Support R&D, Small Business Innovation

Release Date: July 14, 2016

Release Number: 16-53

Contact: Tiffani S. Clements (202) 401-0035

Internet Address:

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration will award up to $125,000 in grants to 16 Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program recipients including state and local economic development agencies, business development centers, colleges and universities and up to $200,000 in grants to 5 Small Business Technology Development Centers to support programs for innovative, technology-driven small businesses.

“We’re excited about partnering with these organizations to help entrepreneurs around the country learn about and compete for SBIR/STTR awards,” said John Williams, SBA Director of Innovation. “The main goal of FAST is to provide more boots on the ground in local communities through our partner organizations to increase awareness about SBIR/STTR’s early stage funding and level the playing field for entrepreneurs, especially those in underrepresented communities.”

FAST is designed to stimulate economic development with outreach and technical assistance to science and technology-driven small businesses, with a particular emphasis on socially and economically disadvantaged firms, helping them to compete in federally-funded research and development through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs.

The following recipients of the FY 2016 FAST awards are:

Regular FAST State Organization up to $125K

  • Connecticut Innovations Incorporated
  • Kansas (Wichita State University)
  • Kentucky Science & Technology Corporation
  • Louisiana State University and A&M College
  • Minnesota High Tech Association
  • Mississippi (Innovate Mississippi)
  • New Mexico (The Regents of New Mexico State University)
  • New York (The Research Foundation for the State…
  • University of New York)
  • North Dakota (University of North Dakota)
  • Ohio Aerospace Institute
  • Oregon Built Environment & Sustainable Technologies Center
  • South Dakota (Governor’s Office of Economic Development)
  • Texas (The University of Texas at San Antonio)
  • Virginia (Center for Innovative Technology)
  • Wisconsin (Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System, UWEX)
  • Wyoming (University of Wyoming)

SBTDC Up to $200K

  • Arkansas (University of Arkansas System)
  • California (Riverside Community College District)
  • Idaho (Boise State University)
  • Nebraska (Board of Regents, Univ. of NE dba Univ. of NE at Omaha)
  • Pennsylvania (Ben Franklin Technology Partners Corporation)

FAST funding awardees must demonstrate how they will help support areas such as:

  • small business research and development assistance,
  • technology transfer from universities to small businesses,
  • technological diffusion of innovation benefiting small businesses,
  • proposal development and mentoring for small businesses applying for SBIR grants; and,
  • commercializing technology developed through SBIR grants.

Candidates were submitted through each of their state and territorial governors, as each governor may submit only one proposal. After evaluations were made by panels of SBIR program managers, the SBA, the Department of Defense, and the National Science Foundation jointly reviewed panel recommendations and made FAST awards based upon the merits of each proposal. Varying levels of matching funds were required, based upon the state and territory location of each economic development agency. The FAST award project and budget periods are for 12 months, beginning September 30, 2016.

About FAST

The program is a competitive grants program designed to strengthen the technological competitiveness of small businesses and improve the participation of small technology firms in the innovation and commercialization of new technology. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam and the American Samoa’s are eligible to receive funding for providing services such as outreach and technical assistance in support of the SBIR/STTR Programs. Additional information about FAST can be found at

Business owner working with NMSU’s Arrowhead Center hopes to create jobs, ecosystem with biorefinery

Business owner working with NMSU’s Arrowhead Center hopes to create jobs, ecosystem with biorefinery

n the small Route 66 town of Tucumcari, N.M, scientist and inventor Bob Hockaday recently made a move to help revitalize business in an innovative way.

New Mexico scientist and inventor Bob Hockaday recently purchased a defunct ethanol plant with strategic plans to outfit it as a biorefinery, a business that would create not just jobs, but an ecosystem within the community that is a hub for rural ranchers. (Courtesy photo)

Beyond the retro hotel and gas station neon signage that characterizes the town, Hockaday purchased a defunct ethanol plant with strategic plans to outfit it as a biorefinery, a business that would create not just jobs, but an ecosystem within the community that is a hub for rural ranchers.

Hockaday is a creative problem-solver and successful scientist with multiple patents and revolutionary inventions and ideas who has spent more than 40 years building a significant contribution to the scientific community. He is president of Energy Related Devices, Inc., a company he founded in 1994 with the ultimate goal to “change the world one energy solution at a time.” Hockaday said his company ERD was “created to manifest the vision that energy can be produced cleanly, simply and economically through technologies modeled on systems in nature.”

The biorefinery expedition is partially a result of collaboration with the Arrowhead Technology Incubator at New Mexico State University. ATI is an intensive startup development program dedicated to bringing technology to market in the areas of water, energy, agriculture and heath care information technology. ATI, which works with Hockaday on a handful of different technologies, was intimately involved in Hockaday’s process, from crafting a business model to financial analysis, to working to secure investors and identify a customer base that will purchase the biorefinery’s bi-product. ATI also conducted an economic impact study in 2015 for the purposes of securing a Local Economic Development, or LEDA, grant.

On June 15, through a LEDA grant from the City of Tucumcari, ERD purchased the former ethanol plant at 1600 Rock Island Road. In partnership with Robert Lopez, a Tucumcari farmer, the company plans to reconfigure the plant as an integration of dairy farming, feedlots, municipal waste, bio-fuel production, and greenhouse farming which can be utilized to obtain a more productive and less water-consuming agriculture. This business synergism takes advantage of the unique features and resources in Tucumcari.

ERD plans to reconfigure the refinery in a series of step modifications. First, the company will clean the site and refurbish the existing truck scale, grain silos and hammer mill to enable grain storage up to 77,500 bushels and to provide milled feed. Additional storage may be added. The second step will be to refurbish and reconfigure the ethanol fermenters to optimize the anaerobic digestion of 32,000 tons of manure, whey and garbage per year into pipeline quality methane and high purity grade carbon dioxide. The third step will be to provide a liquid or solid fertilizer delivery service to farms. The last steps will be to add solar and wind energy cost-saving features and to capture and utilize the hydrogen byproducts from the high temperature digestion process.

“We want to ensure a synergistic relationship with our suppliers and customers, while improving the performance of our farming,” Hockaday said.

In full operation, the plant is expected to employ 20 skilled workers. For now, ERD’s next step is enlisting supplier and customer contracts.

“Bob is pushing the innovation envelope and creating new economic opportunities for his community and for New Mexico,” said Zetdi Sloan, director of ATI. “We are thrilled to have contributed to his successful agri-tech commercialization and startup creation.”

To apply to Arrowhead Technology Incubator or for more information,

ATI is supported in part by the U.S. Economic Development Administration University Center for Regional Commercialization.

“Innovation and Discovery in Agriculture and Food”

“Innovation and Discovery in Agriculture and Food”

High Desert Discovery District (HD3), New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) and Arrowhead Center at New Mexico State University (NMSU) announce:
“Innovation and Discovery in Agriculture and Food”

November 9-10, 2016 in Las Cruces

Related discoveries from across New Mexico invited to apply

June 30, 2016 –The High Desert Discovery District (HD3) – New Mexico’s first privately-led high technology start-up accelerator – the New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) and New Mexico State University (NMSU) announced today that they will co-host the next HD3 Discovery Day™ – “Innovation and Discovery in Agriculture and Food” – November 9-10, 2016 in Las Cruces. The event will focus on statewide innovation and commercialization opportunities within or that impact the agriculture, value-added food products and food industries.

“You can think of this event as Shark Tank for the agricultural and food-related sectors, both of which are significant economic drivers for our state,” New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte said. “We’re excited to see people of all backgrounds bring forward their projects and ideas to improve market conditions, develop new market opportunities and solve real and significant challenges in agriculture.”

As with other Discovery Day events, innovators from all over New Mexico are invited to apply to HD3 to present their agriculture, agriculture-related (e.g. water, irrigation, biosecurity, energy, biomass, etc.), food or value-added food discovery/innovation/product to a highly experienced group of subject matter experts, business achievers, entrepreneurs, innovators, management experts and investors. The application deadline to participate in the Las Cruces Discovery Day is Friday, October 7, 2016. Application details are at

“HD3 Discovery Day will further support the next generation of innovators and leaders in agriculture and food and we are so pleased to be part of it,” said Kathryn Hansen, director of Arrowhead Center at NMSU. “Because of our rich network of entrepreneurs and agribusiness leaders at NMSU and the Arrowhead Technology Incubator, Discovery Day is a very natural and significant progression of our support of agricultural entrepreneurs”.

All Discovery Day presenters are invited to attend the HD3 Networking Cocktail Reception and Casual Supper, an HD3 tradition to gather together presenters, panelists, hosts, sponsors and special guests socially the evening before Discovery Day. For this event, HD3 will spotlight New Mexico’s wine industry with a wine dinner for all participants on November 9, 2016 in La Mesilla.

What is Discovery Day?

The purpose of the HD3 Discovery Day is to offer New Mexico innovators and entrepreneurs the opportunity to vet and discuss their innovation or opportunity (‘discovery’), their challenges, strategy and market promise in front of a highly experienced group of business achievers. Each HD3 advisor has extensive experience in matching technology opportunities with needs in the marketplace, product development, investment strategy, marketing and sales, management, valuations and exits. In addition to their experience, each advisor also brings a wide international network of contacts and resources that are tapped to accelerate the most promising discoveries.

Each presentation and discussion time is limited to 30 minutes, and all panel presentations are conducted in a private setting to allow for the maximum of sensitive and proprietary business and technological information to be shared; and a fluidity of discussion, strategy and suggestions to occur. All Discovery Day discussions remain confidential.

Since its founding in 2010, HD3 has hosted 15 Discovery Days throughout the state. HD3 hosts this signature program with R/D, industry partners or economic development entities across New Mexico. Between 12-15 discoveries are typically selected to present based on the list of criteria developed by HD3. The evening prior to Discovery Day, a social gathering for the selected presenters and the HD3 advisors is hosted. For more information about the Discovery Day application process, please see

About HD3

The High Desert Discovery District (HD3) is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organization committed to identifying and commercializing technology projects in New Mexico. HD3 manages and drives the process of innovation – building New Mexico growth companies based on cutting-edge national laboratory, university research and other discoveries lead by technologists and scientists unassociated with labs or universities. HD3 provides a forum and a methodology for entrepreneurs, scientists, innovators and technologists to be heard and their discovery to be understood by a highly-experienced group of business strategists, successful entrepreneurs and management executives and investors seeking to contribute their own knowledge and experience toward the improvement of the New Mexico entrepreneurial economy. Once a promising, market-validated discovery is identified, HD3 accelerates the discovery and sits in “in the trenches” with the innovators and entrepreneurs to drive it toward progress and successful outcomes. HD3 – the difference between a start-up that starts…and a start-up that succeeds. For more information about HD3, visit

About the New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA)

NMDA is a producer-consumer service and regulatory department. Through the work of its six divisions, NMDA protects New Mexico agriculture from pests and diseases that threaten plants and animals; enforces pesticide law; advocates for farmers’ and ranchers’ reliance upon natural resources; ensures the sanitation of local milk and dairy products; promotes local food and agricultural products; and ensures fairness in the marketplace. More information is at

About The Arrowhead Innovation Network

The Arrowhead Innovation Network (AIN) is centered around Launch, Arrowhead Center’s proof of concept center for technology commercialization in New Mexico and west Texas. A recently awarded federal innovation grant (i6 Challenge) supports AIN, a collaborative network designed to invest in innovation and entrepreneurship, create and retain talent, and strengthen the relationship between research and commercialization.


SBA administrator visits NMSU’s Arrowhead Center

SBA administrator visits NMSU’s Arrowhead Center

U.S. Small Business Administration Regional Administrator Yolanda Garcia Olivarez visited Arrowhead Center at New Mexico State University last week to learn about Arrowhead programming and discuss areas for increased collaboration between the SBA and Arrowhead.

As a 2009 appointee of President Barack Obama, Olivarez oversees SBA activity in the South Central Region, which is comprised of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas.

The visit also included SBA El Paso District Director Phillip Silva, El Paso Deputy District Director Jose Campos, Albuquerque Deputy District Director Kerrie Hurd, and Lead Business Opportunity Specialist Mary Drobot.

Arrowhead director Kathryn Hansen gave a presentation on Arrowhead programming, highlighting Arrowhead’s commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship throughout New Mexico. Zetdi Sloan, director of Arrowhead Technology Incubator, and Dana Catron, Arrowhead program coordinator, gave a presentation on the New Mexico Federal and State Partnership Program, or NM FAST, which is funded by the SBA and helps small New Mexico businesses find and apply to Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer grants. NM FAST Tech Advisor Paul Furth also provided input on the program and engaged with the SBA visitors.

Discussions included programmatic highlights and plans for future programming. Arrowhead officials said Olivarez was impressed with the work Arrowhead has accomplished, and noted multiple points for collaboration between the SBA and Arrowhead to make leveraging resources for small businesses even more successful. One collaborative opportunity that NM FAST is planning for this fall is a panel event that will feature successful SBIR/STTR winners. Experts will answer questions and discuss concerns first-time businesses have when preparing for and submitting a SBIR/STTR proposal.

Created in 1953, the SBA strives to “aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation,” something the agency achieves by providing small businesses with loans, contracts, counseling and more. Paired with Arrowhead Center’s suite of entrepreneurial resources and programming, a stronger collaboration between the two organizations will enhance the assistance available to small business throughout New Mexico.

Arrowhead representatives said they look forward to working with the SBA on future events, and thanked Olivarez and her team for their visit.

ArcaMini : World’s most versatile personal transport vehicle you can buy

ArcaMini : World’s most versatile personal transport vehicle you can buy

After releasing the ArcaBoard, the world’s first commercially available hoverboard, ARCA Space corporation is announcing the ArcaMini; Made for everyone to enjoy as their own personal portable transportation device.

ARCA Space Corporation makes it possible to safely ride a high quality vehicle that can also be used in remote mode, making it the ultimate entertainment and utility device.

Compared with an electric skateboard, the ArcaMini uses four unarticulated wheels that make balance training unnecessary.

ArcaMini, measuring only 40cm on its largest dimension, is able to fit in a backpack. The design is unique allowing for use as a personal transportation vehicle as well as an entertainment and utility vehicle in remote mode. The range while in remote mode is 150m (492ft) allowing for the transportation of various items such as video cameras and luggage.

Being entirely made of aluminum and steel alloys, the ArcaMini has a design that was inspired by aerospace rovers used for planetary exploration.

The ArcaMini performances are above most of the current similar vehicles. It has 40x30x9cm (15.75×11.81×3.54”) and a weight of 7.8kg (17.2lbs). It has two electric motors, totaling over 3000W, that are powered by a 10,000mAh battery. The maximum rider, or payload, weight is 110kg (243lbs). These characteristics allow the ArcaMini to achieve good performances at an autonomy of around 60min, a range of 20km (12.5mi) and a limited speed of 20km/h (12.5mph).

The ArcaMini is a product made in US. The retail price is $695 and it can be ordered on

About ARCA

ARCA Space is an American aerospace company from Las Cruces, New Mexico, whose main objective is the exploration of space as well as the development of commercial

ARCA Space achievements:

2004 – During the $10 million, Ansari X Prize Competition, ARCA launched the first rocket, Demonstrator 2B.

2006 – ARCA built the world’s largest solar balloon that lifted into the stratosphere the crew capsule of Stabilo, a manned suborbital vehicle created after the end of Ansari X Prize Competition.

2007 – The Stabilo program continued, this time with an even larger solar balloon lifting the complete Stabilo vehicle into the stratosphere.

2008 – ARCA joined the $30 million Google Lunar X Prize Competition.

2010 – Helen rocket was launched at 120,000 ft, the event representing the first powered flight in the Google Lunar X Prize Competition. The rocket was transported into the stratosphere with the help of a helium balloon.

2012 – Haas rockets series was introduced, consisting of Haas 2B and 2C, a suborbital, respectively orbital rocket launchers.

2013 – The European Space Agency (ESA) awarded ARCA with a contract to test the parachutes system for the ExoMars spacecraft that will be launched to Mars in 2016.

2014 – AirStrato “The most amazing air robot in the world” a UAV performed the first flights.

2015 – ARCA presented the ArcaBoard, the first truly personal flying machine, commercially available.

To learn more about ARCA Space and specifications of the ArcaMini, please visit:

Headlines  Chance encounter with a nursing textbook changes life for multiple generations

Headlines Chance encounter with a nursing textbook changes life for multiple generations

Whether you call it fate, luck or divine intervention, the New Mexico State University student who left behind a nursing textbook after moving out of a residence hall 40 years ago had a significant impact on Margaret Pacheco’s life.

As a little girl, Pacheco had dreamed of becoming a nurse, but life delayed a career when she married and had eight children before the age of 30. Pacheco, who didn’t finish high school, was working at NMSU in the summer cleaning residence halls and began work on her GED in the mid-1970s. It was during that time that she found a nursing textbook in one of the residence halls that inspired her to move forward with her lifelong dream.
“I do remember at one time when I was still living at home and my mom mentioned that for all of her life, she wanted to be a nurse,” says Christina Calderon, Pacheco’s oldest daughter, “but culturally and economically, it seemed like just a dream.”

After receiving her GED, Pacheco, a Las Cruces native, attended NMSU and studied in the licensed practical nurse program from 1977 to 1980. After working as an LPN for eight years, Pacheco returned to NMSU to become a registered nurse, and she graduated with an associate degree in 1989.

Daughter Estela Heredia, who was in middle school when her mother first attended NMSU, recalls the challenges her mother overcame to become a nurse.

“She had a lot on her plate, being a wife, being a mother with seven children still at home,” Heredia says, “then venturing into this new area and enrolling in school.”

Heredia recalls how Pacheco always took care of their family and household responsibilities before she began her studies each evening.

“A lot of times, my poor mom, she would fall asleep at the living room table studying way past midnight,” Heredia says.

As the youngest of eight, Martha Rivera echoes that sentiment.

“A vivid memory I recall is the ability my mother had to divide her time among all of her responsibilities and never once complaining,” Rivera says.

While Pacheco attended NMSU, Calderon ’93 and Heredia ’10 ’13 were working at the university, and the pair has fond memories of meeting their mother for lunch in between her classes. The duo also followed their mother’s lead and earned degrees from NMSU after starting a family.

“I have three kids, and I, too, went through college later like my mom,” says Heredia, who is an executive assistant in the Office of General Counsel at NMSU. “I thought, if my mom can do it with eight kids, I can do it with three. She was my hero.”

For nearly 30 years, Pacheco was a nurse at Memorial Medical Center in Las Cruces, and she spent the majority of her career in the pediatric ward.

“The patients loved her,” Heredia notes. “When she went to home health, they just loved her and looked forward to her visits. They would get attached.”

Rivera remembers an outing with her mother when they ran into a former patient and her mother, who thanked Pacheco for saving her daughter’s life as a 5-year-old. Pacheco was the one to notice a life-threatening illness that hadn’t been diagnosed; she then notified the doctor and treatment was started.

That little girl grew up to become a nurse, too.

“My mom never looked for glory,” Rivera says, “but simply loved her job and treated every patient as if they were family.”
Pacheco retired in 2008 and passed away in January 2011.

“The year my mother passed, she had told me to complete school and graduate,” Rivera ’15 recalls. “It was very difficult and bittersweet when I graduated without having her there, but her presence was felt. I remember her saying ‘Life gets in the way at times, but school will always be there; it is never too late to go back to school.’”

Not only did a discarded textbook spark a 30-year nursing career, but it also started a family legacy of nursing. Pacheco inspired not just one, but two generations to follow in her footsteps.

She has three daughters and three grandchildren who are nurses. Calderon and Rivera are nurses at MountainView Regional Medical Center in Las Cruces, and another daughter, Gracie Acosta, is a nurse in California.

“As a child, I saw my mother prepare for work, come home from work and never complain about her profession,” Rivera says. “At the time, I did not realize what a rare trait that is – I simply thought everyone loved their job as much as my mom did.”



Jun 12, 2016

New Mexico Shrimp Company home of the first indoor shrimp farm in the state of New Mexico is proud to introduce cottonseed scampi oil to the market.  Cottonseed oil has been used in America’s kitchens for over 100 years.  Made from real cottonseed, the scampi oil with a garlic and butter flavor is a great addition to prepare your favorite shrimp or other fish dishes.  Add red paper flakes and parsley flakes along with linguine or fettuccine pasta and you create an amazing shrimp scampi meal.  

With a long shell life, our scampi oil is both zero cholesterol and zero trans fat and rich in antioxidants.

Furthermore, as confirmed by local chefs in our area, because of its high smoke point, allowing for sauté or stir fry dishes, the oil will not scorch or burn or disappear in the pan. Cooked for about 2 minutes, our cottonseed scampi oil is healthy alternative for high temperature frying.

For more information, please contact:  JUAN ALBERT at 575-323-4413.

Watch a video about NM Shrimp Co. here!

Leading the water to the horse

Leading the water to the horse

Remote Well Solutions LLC

  • Innovation: Water technology
  • Commercialized: July 2014
  • Top exec:Mike Lisk, owner and CTO
  • Location: Cloudcroft
  • Website:

Elevator pitch: Livestock production is dependent on water and water distribution. Addressing this challenge, Remote Well Solutions has developed one of the most dramatic technological improvements to the Western livestock production industry in decades. Our off-grid water distribution controller automatically manages the pumping process to efficiently deliver water to locations where livestock need it.

Distributing water across pastures increases pasture efficiency and livestock performance while reducing water consumption. Automating the distribution process eliminates waste due to overfilling spillages, which we estimate to be more than 100 million gallons each year, most lost to evaporation.

Our controller is environmentally friendly, utilizing solar power and conserves ground water while lowering labor and input costs and increasing profits for the livestock producer.

We see our technology as a true game changer for the livestock production industry in the Western U.S. and anywhere else where off-grid water distribution is needed.

What makes your offering disruptive? Our patent-pending off-grid water distribution controller is the only product of this type commercially available to distribute water several miles across the landscape. By distributing the water, huge areas of New Mexico and the West can now be used for livestock production where before they were unusable due to the lack of water.

Where water historically has been the limiting factor to livestock production, there is now a solution.

How has the market responded? Currently, we are engaged with tribes and several pueblos on potential projects to install water distribution systems on Native American lands. These potential projects range from about $100,000 to more than $5 million in New Mexico and Arizona.

At each presentation we have experienced strong need and demand for our technology. The Native American livestock producers, however, in most cases, lease the land where they grow their livestock. They must work with tribal organizations or government for the improvements to the lands.

Because of the process, our sales cycles tend to be lengthy. We are engaged with several groups on projects we hope to start this summer, the largest being for the Navajo Nation, which we expect will result in about $5 million for 2016-2017.

ATI is supported in part by the U.S. Economic Development Administration University Center for Regional Commercialization.

Startup farms fresh shrimp from saltwater tanks

Startup farms fresh shrimp from saltwater tanks

By Kevin Robinson-Avila / Journal Staff Writer

It’s still not possible to harvest ocean-grown shrimp in the desert, but the New Mexico Shrimp Co. in Las Cruces is doing the next best thing.

It’s growing all-natural, saltwater shrimp in indoor tanks through a sustainable operation that could not only help conserve ocean resources, but also provide consumers in urban and rural areas with plentiful harvests of locally grown, tank-to-table seafood that’s as fresh as shrimp at a seaside restaurant.

The company, which launched in late 2014, expects to produce about 13,000 pounds of shrimp annually at a new 12,000-square-foot facility that it opened last summer in Mesquite, just south of Las Cruces. And the company is now turning its operation into a franchise business, with three licenses already signed for facilities in New Mexico and Massachusetts, and another half-dozen in the works, said company co-owner Tracey Carrillo.
“We’ve created a license agreement and structure that allows anyone, anywhere in the U.S., to acquire the technology and know-how to rapidly open one of our saltwater shrimp farms,” Carrillo said. “Our goal is to licence 10 new facilities a year. We have six more people who plan to become licensees and are now getting their financing in order, and identifying buildings and land to pull the trigger this year.”

Local demand for the company’s produce indicates a winning operation. Its shrimp is regularly sold out to local restaurants and direct to consumers as soon as it’s harvested, Carrillo said.

With a retail price of $17 per pound and $15 for wholesale, the company expects to generate more than $200,000 in revenue a year from its in-house shrimp production. Plus, it’s selling franchise licenses for $35,000 in the U.S. and $100,000 in other countries, followed by a 2 percent share of gross sales from each franchised operation.
“We’re not profitable yet because we invested a lot in our new building to get up and running,” Carrillo said. “But we believe by next year we will turn a profit.”

The company has raised $750,000 in private equity to date, most of it from Indiana businessman Rod Rance, who co-owns the company with Carrillo.

The firm’s rapid growth reflects the appeal of its innovative, environmentally friendly technology and business strategy, all of which was developed at New Mexico State University. It grew out of agricultural research at NMSU, where Carrillo works as an agronomist and assistant director of campus farm operations.

Carrillo and his NMSU colleagues were developing an alternative variety of cottonseed that’s free of the naturally occurring toxin “gossypol,” which cotton plants use to fight pests. By eliminating the presence of gossypol, the cottonseed could potentially be used as a high-protein animal feed, adding more value to crops for growers.

To test the new cottonseed, NMSU chose fast-growing, saltwater Pacific white shrimp, which can grow from microscopic larvae to full size in just four months, thus providing rapid study results, Carrillo said.
The trials were successful, demonstrating cottonseed’s value as an alternative source of protein. And, after growing the shrimp, NMSU offered the fish for sale on the university website as a fresh, locally grown product.

“The response was overwhelming,” Carrillo said. “We sold everything we produced in just one to two hours. People were lined up around the building.”

That led to Carrillo’s eureka! moment: Sell fresh, locally grown, saltwater seafood as an alternative to the frozen, imported shrimp that floods today’s markets, and often includes preservatives and even antibiotics. In addition, by feeding shrimp with cottonseed, NMSU’s process could help decrease commercial depletion of ocean resources because today’s shrimp farms use fish meal. That’s fish harvested from the ocean, and dried and ground into aquaculture feed.

“That’s depleting ocean species and it’s not sustainable,” Carrillo said. “We’re basically using fish to feed more fish to then feed humans. We want to replace fish meal with plant-based protein.”

That could greatly lower shrimp production costs, since cottonseed currently sells for about $200 a ton, compared with about $2,000 a ton for fish meal. And that, in turn, could add a lot more value to cottonseed for growers, which was the original purpose of NMSU’s research.

Carrillo sought help from Arrowhead Center Inc., which manages all of NMSU’s technology commercialization efforts. Apart from patenting the technology, Arrowhead helped draw up New Mexico Shrimp’s franchise business strategy.

It also helped the company compete in the prestigious Fish 2.0 investment competition last fall, where aspiring startups compete for money, and get to network with deep-pocketed investors and entrepreneurs during Stanford University’s Sustainable Seafood Innovation Forum. The event helped the company line up more licensing deals.

“They have a great product and a great business model,” said Arrowhead Director Kathryn Hansen. “It’s NMSU research that led to a commercial opportunity and they’re building a successful business around it.”
Meanwhile, the company continues to develop its technology into an innovative, environmentally friendly operation. At the new Mesquite facility, the firm now recycles all tank water for use in growing saline-tolerant crops. It also uses fish waste to add nutrients to the plants.

“We add the waste to the growing beds because it’s loaded with nutrients like nitrogen and potassium,” Carrillo said. “The plants take up the waste, and we continue to recycle and filter the water. It’s a zero-waste facility.”

The company has created a comprehensive software system called Aqua Doctor to better manage its saltwater tanks. The company and franchisees can use it to input water quality data, which the software then processes using proprietary algorithms to provide management decisions.

The company is now integrating the software with hardware, allowing operators to place probes in the water tanks to measure salt levels and temperature for real-time decisions on water quality.

ATI is supported in part by the U.S. Economic Development Administration University Center for Regional Commercialization.