- Fall 2016-2019: Kevin Melendrez (ACCT/IS)
The Lionel Haight Chair began as a professorship with a $250,000 gift from Judy Gray Johnson and her husband, Michael, in 2010. With the goal of raising the Lionel Haight Professorship to a $1 million endowed chair, Johnson offered an additional $100,000 to match gifts totaling $100,000 given within two years. When that goal was met five months ahead of schedule, she doubled the pledge, offering another $100,000 matching challenge. Over the years, 151 individual and corporate donors gave to the chair. Dr. Lionel Haight was known for his demanding yet supportive teaching style, and had a 45-year career at NMSU from 1927-1972.