October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. To commemorate the strides community leaders and businesses make to stamp out domestic violence, the New Mexico Coalition Against Domestic Violence is proud to announce the winners of the inaugural “Peace Makers Awards”. These “Peace Makers” have exemplified tremendous community support with their local domestic violence programs, and have helped their communities become intolerant of abuse. Domestic violence programs from around the state submitted their nominations based on the businesses or individuals they wanted to recognize for going above and beyond in support of their organization.
“It is truly amazing to see people lend their time, talent, resources and business expertise to local domestic violence shelters. It is going to take widespread community support from outside the advocacy community to truly make a difference,” said Sherry Taylor, executive director of the Esperanza shelter in Santa Fe. “That is the reason these awards are so important.”
The winners of this year’s awards are from across New Mexico.
- Tony Trujillo – Director of government relations for Freeport‐McMoRan Copper & Gold. El Refugio, Inc of Silver City nominated Mr. Trujillo and Freeport‐McMoRan because of their leadership to the community in Silver City, NM. Since 2002, Freeport‐McMoRan Copper & Gold Foundation has invested close to $2 million in domestic violence shelters in communities where they operate as part of their Domestic Violence Shelter Initiative. Their view is that it is a privilege to support domestic violence shelters and service providers that provide safety, independence and new lives free of violence to thousands of clients each year.
- Pauline Lucero‐Esquivel – Volunteer for Enlace Comunitario Development Committee in Albuquerque, NM. Pauline is a mother of three, a bilingual therapist with a private practice, and is actively engaged in many wonderful organizations donating her time and energy to make a difference in her community. She is constantly giving of her time to help raise funds for domestic violence services, especially now that funds have been getting cut across the board.
- Arturo Casillas ‐ Volunteer at Grammy’s House in Artesia, NM. A special story of a 22 year old male who is currently “Paying it forward”. When Arturo was 10 years old, he, his mom and sister were in a shelter to get away from his father who was very abusive. He remembers how nice everyone was to them, and now he volunteers, especially with the children to return the deed.
- Las Cruces Staples – La Casa in Las Cruces, NM nominated Staples as a 2011 “Peace Maker” because they have gone above and beyond in the spirit of generosity to provide to their shelter. Regardless of the need, Staples is always ready to help. They are great advocates for domestic violence prevention and they are always willing to help La Casa, Inc., which makes Las Cruces a better place.
- Santa Fe Curves – For nearly three years, the ladies from Curves have supplied essential needs for Esperanza shelter in Santa Fe, NM. Everything from towels, cleaning supplies, diapers, food, you name it and they have provided. All of these award winners have inspired and empowered us all to do more with less and they make our jobs a whole lot easier.