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Today's Features

  • Judy Cordova-Romero had big dreams when she first came to Highlands University, and many of her dreams to make campus life better for students came true during her tenure.

    As Highlands University vice president for student affairs, Cordova-Romero was an advocate for the new residence hall that students enjoy today. She pushed for a new student center that had its groundbreaking ceremony Monday. And her dreams of refurbishing the Felix Martinez building into a one-stop shop for students’ needs came true during a ribbon-cutting ceremony this week.

  • What would it take to lure renowned musicians into one’s home? What if they were Arturo Toscaninni, considered by many as the greatest conductor ever to wave a baton, or George and Ira Gershwin, renowned lyricist and pianist and the beloved clarinet player, Benny Goodman?

    Luring wasn’t necessary; in the East 90th Street New York City home of Albert Fredric Stoessel, an American composer, violinist and conductor; these visits were customary. Stoessel’s son, Las Vegas resident, Fredrick Stoessel says, “I just thought of them as family friends.”

  • Gary Gamertsfelder went to Kansas City’s recent national SkillsUSA competition and loved every minute of it. While he may be the first local to crack the top 10 in the national competition, he has had a lot of mentors along the way.

    Instructor Anthony Baca remembers the inception of the automotive repair program at Luna Community College. He’s seen five state champions and four national championships during his tenure.

    Baca said Gamertsfelder is so good at what he does he motivates fellow students in the entire Luna auto shop.

  • April Esquibel saw herself as nerdy — and she wanted to change her self-image. So she started competing in pageants.

    The 18-year-old now is Miss Santa Fe and held the titles of Miss Las Vegas 2009 and Hispanic Teen New Mexico 2006. She is this year’s Fiesta queen, with the event taking place this weekend.

  • Most of us would struggle recalling close to 90 years of memories, but Arturo and Marie Montoya do it with ease.

    Arthur George Montoya, born in Las Vegas in 1919, and his wife, Marie Gonzales, born in Clayton in 1921, will celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary Sept. 15. These two have offered, and continue to offer, a wealth of information concerning life in early 20th century agrarian northern New Mexico and beyond, gleaned from their full lives.

  • A father-daughter project has turned into a real passion for a local family in recent years.

    Ashley Wheeler and her stepfather, Estevan Ortega, began working on a lowrider bicycle a year ago and are now being noticed at major competitions.

    “I was very excited that I won first place in the Impalas Car Show in Santa Fe in May. I love my bike and couldn’t ask for anything more, and I am grateful to my stepfather for helping me be successful,” Wheeler said.

  • Robert Mishler is not a johnny-come-lately in Las Vegas’ historic preservation efforts. He’s been involved for decades.

    Recently, the state Historic Preservation Division gave Mishler, a retired Highlands University anthropology professor, a lifetime achievement award for his dedication to the cause of historic preservation for the last 35 years.

    When he and his wife, Ann, moved to Las Vegas in the late 1960s, much of the Plaza and Bridge Street areas was boarded up. Most of the town’s business and social activity was on Douglas Avenue.

  • Molly Salman is off to college after graduating with honors from Robertson High School, but she leaves a definite mark on her alma matter.

    This last school year, Salman was elected by students to sit with the district’s school board as the student representative. The Las Vegas City Schools is one of the few districts where students have a seat on the governing board.

  • Leroy Lucero, or “Pato,” as he is known to many, is seated at his Yamaha electric keyboard, making music, practicing for an upcoming collaboration with his compadre, Joe Franco’s group, “Dulce.” Sweet!

    A multi-talented, lifetime musician, Lucero has followed many paths, but always, accompanied by music.

    Born in Las Vegas, Nov. 10, 1946, Pato, 63, is the son of the late Ben Lucero and Carmen Garduño Lucero. Leroy’s siblings are Lonnie and Jeanette.

  • The original plan for Alma Sanchez and Phylisia Dimas was to graduate in 2011.

    But they defied expectations.

    Sanchez of West Las Vegas High School and Dimas of Robertson High School are walking the line in their respective commencement ceremonies this weekend — a year early.

    Sanchez and Dimas are among a growing number of Las Vegas high school students taking advantage of the access to dual-credit classes offered at Luna Community College and Highlands University.