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Vegas board member gets top post in association

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By David Giuliani

Ramon “Swoops” Montaño, a member of the Las Vegas City Schools board, has been named to a top leadership position in the New Mexico School Boards Association.

He became president-elect of the group during its Dec. 5 conference in Albuquerque. He is now on track to becoming the president next year.

Montaño said among his goals will be to help in the effort to improve the state’s funding formula for schools. He noted that more school districts have been asking for emergency funding than ever before.

“Schools shouldn’t have to cut arts and music programs to help offset the costs of other programs. There are a lot of unfunded mandates. It’s important that our teachers have tools to do their jobs,” Montaño said.

He said he has also been asked to serve as a member of the Workforce and Education Advisory Team for the transition efforts of Lt. Gov. Diane Denish, who is expected to become governor after Gov. Bill Richardson, nominated as U.S. commerce secretary, goes to Washington.

“You can talk to Diane Denish. She’s very approachable,” Montaño said.

Another Las Vegan on Denish’s transition team is Matt Martinez, who is leader of the Healthy Families and Communities Advisory Team.