July 17, 2013 by Jane Moorman, NMSU News Center
CLOVIS, N.M. – Twenty-five local government officials and employees from across New Mexico received certificates of completion from The NM EDGE Certified Public Manager and County College programs during the New Mexico Association of Counties’ annual conference in Clovis in June.
They earned designations of certified public official, certified public supervisor, certified county commissioner and certified advocate for public ethics from the program.
The NM EDGE, which stands for Education Designed to Generate Excellence in the public sector, is a program administered by New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service. The NM EDGE County College was developed in collaboration with the New Mexico Association of Counties.
Encouraging better government through education is the purpose of The NM EDGE, which follows the guidelines of the National Certified Public Manager consortium. The NM EDGE is working with public official associations and other strategic partners around the state to develop certification programs.
“This graduation included some notable firsts,” said Mary DeLorenzo, program director for The NM EDGE. “Six county commissioners earned our first-ever New Mexico Certified County Commissioner designation, and two of these also graduated with their New Mexico Certified Advocate for Public Ethics, while another also graduated with her New Mexico Certified Public Official. We also had our first municipal employee to complete the New Mexico Certified Public Supervisor designation.”
To obtain the certified county commissioner designation, the elected official must complete 24 three-hour classes from a requirements list and a mini-portfolio demonstrating, through written and project works, the application of the competencies learned by participating in the classes.
Commissioners receiving this designation were Robert Corn of Chaves County, Bill Sauble of Colfax County, Wendell Bostwick of Curry County, Nick Archuleta of Harding County, Susan Flores of Otero County, and GloJean Todacheene of San Juan County.
“Achieving the first New Mexico Certified County Commissioners is due in large part to the vision and commitment of the NMAC Board of Directors and Executive Director Paul Gutierrez,” DeLorenzo said. “The NMAC conducted a Boot Camp for Commissioners in November of 2012 at which they partnered with NM EDGE to offer six classes sponsored by NMAC and at no charge to the commissioners.”
Sauble and Todacheene also received the designation of certified advocate for public ethics.
To accomplish this specialized certification they completed a mini-portfolio and the required classes of “Ethics: Know the Law” and “New Mexico Governmental Conduct Act” as well as eight electives, which included courses such as “Do the Right Thing,” “Dangerous Liaison,” “Ethical Leadership” and “Answering the Call to Public Service.”
For more information about the class requirements visit http://countycollege.nmsu.edu public sector specialization program and requirements.
The first municipal employee to complete the New Mexico Certified Public Supervisor designation is Dorothy Laney, Village of Reserve’s DWI coordinator and compliance officer.
This designation is the second tier of the Certified Public Manager program. The recipients completed 30 classes selected from an approved list. They were also required to complete a six-hour culminating assessment where they demonstrated the application of competencies learned through participating in the classes.
Joining Laney in receiving this designation were Jackie Powell, Lincoln County commissioner, Adrianna Ortiz, Los Alamos senior deputy clerk; Carol Bowman-Muskett, McKinley County commissioner; Pamela Heltner, Otero County manager; Christine Tenski, Otero County probate judge; Roberta “Bert” Hanneman, Otero County safety officer; Conrad Cordova, Taos County MIS director; and Dan Zolnier, Valencia County human resource director.
Eleven individuals received the Certified Public Manager program’s first tier designation of certified public official. To earn this title, participants must complete at least 18 required three-hour classes such as knowing your government, management and human resources.
Those completing this level of education in June were Rheganne Vaughn, Cibola County chief administrative officer; Bill Sauble, Colfax County commissioner; Lucas Fresquez, Los Alamos County chief appraiser; Billy Ruiz, Luna County project manager and facility director; Anthony Dimas, McKinley County office of emergency management director; Patricia Patterson, McKinley County emergency coordinator; Adam Leigland, Santa Fe County public works director; Johnny Baca, Santa Fe County traffic manager in the public works department; Susan Trujillo, Taos County treasurer, Bobbi DeHerrera, Taos County deputy assessor; and Brent Jaramillo, Taos County human resource director.
NM EDGE County College began in 2002 as a dream of the late Sam Montoya. As the executive director of the New Mexico Association of Counties, Montoya asked NMSU’s Cooperative Extension Service to develop an educational program for New Mexico’s county officials and employees. Courses based on the certified public manager model used in other states where first delivered in late 2004.
NM EDGE County College is working with affiliates of the New Mexico Association of Counties to develop affiliate-specific curricula. To date, specific curriculum for each of following offices has been developed: county commissioners, county clerks, treasurers, public assessment officers, county health care officials and Cooperative Extension Service county personnel.
Public sector specializations include certification in information technology, GIS, jail administration and risk management. Currently the program is developing certifications in the areas of public purchasing and public finance.