2017-02-15, Kathryn Hansen, NMSU Arrowhead Center CEO

After an interlude of music by our guest pianist Laurie Norman, President Christopher called the meeting to order for the invocation from George Washington, intoned by Jim Maxon.  After President Christopher led the Pledge of Allegiance, Maxon continued the meeting leading “When You’re Smiling.”  Meeting and greeting ensued. 

Jim Scott brought a slice of banana nut bread to Richelle Ponder, who in turn had Steve Loman lead a spirited auction for it; the winner was Daniel Payne, who made a gift of the bread to C. J. Menking. 

Christopher regained control and introduced our guests, including Kevin Brooks from Mayfield High and Menking, a second grader at Acton Academy.  Mary Lee Shelton invited us to a meeting of the Juárez Campestre club to be held in El Paso March 2. 

Happy dollars from Keith Houser, soon to be a grandfather; Christopher Dulany, about the demise of Sound Off (Rynni Henderson noted that most people seem to be happy about this); John Hernández, happy to be here; Elaine Szalay, happy to be on the “right side of the dirt” (Barry Fisher seconded this); and Glenn Duff, just happy! 

President Christopher reported on the board meeting:  We will be capping the winnings of the drawing at $500 with any excess carried to the next pot; any student winner will receive the funds as a scholarship.  Next month’s “can” will help us send an additional student to RYLA over our budget.  Our meeting space/lunch contract is ending.  The committee recommended that we continue at La Posta with a $1 weekly meal increase; Steve Loman moved and Bill Harty (among others) seconded and the club approved the contract. 

Reminders: on February 21 at 11:30 a.m., Sue Gerber, NMSU alumna and leader of the Polio Initiative at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, will speak to a gathering of Rotary clubs at the Las Cruces Convention Center.  District 5520’s Every Rotarian Every Year cruise raffle is underway through mid-April:  chances recognize contributions to the Rotary Foundation, and we’d like to again be recognized for 100% giving.  Barry Fisher invited us to participate in the Mesilla Valley club (where his spouse Andrea Dresser is president-elect) youth talent show to be held in late spring; more details to come. 

The Program

Mark Santiago, February program chair, introduced Kathy Hansen, CEO of the NMSU Arrowhead Center, where Mark’s son Justin works.  Kathy, spouse of long-time Rotarian Harry Hansen, was wearing her Paul Harris Fellow pin. 

Kathy gave an extensive overview of the programs of Arrowhead Center, which reports to NMSU vice president for economic development Kevin Boberg.  These programs are grouped into four major areas: intellectual property, business services, management of the Arrowhead Park, and student entrepreneurship.  Intellectual property includes support for commercialization of NMSU research through programs such as Launch, a competition to test market ideas; and Innoventure, engaging K-12 students in entrepeneurship.  Business services offered include technology transfer programs, a regional commercialization center, and support for federal small business innovation and tech transfer grants. 

Arrowhead Park is named for the shape of the 175 acre parcel south of the main NMSU campus and bounded by Interstates 10 and 25; it contains BCOM, the new osteopathic medical school, two early college high schools, and facilities currently occupied by 12 companies.  Plans include further development of the area in support of technology startups and local economic development, such as a center for support of the nascent local film industry.  Student programs include Studio G, supporting startup student businesses, and Shark Tank, where local investors such as Lou Sisbarro, Mickey Clute, Dino Cervantes, and Royal Jones hear and consider support for student business ideas.  Two student entrepreneurs, Alexis Cornidez and Leonard Casaus, talked about their ventures and the support they are receiving from the Arrowhead Center.  

After the Program

The can collected $73 supporting a young leukemia patient.  Mary Ellen McKay’s ace of spades did not win the $500 pot.  Richelle told about a shrimp who didn’t want to share Christmas gifts because she was a little “shellfish.”  Ugh.  President Christopher closed the meeting by leading the 4-Way Test.

<prior week   following week>

Guests of Rotarians



Silvia Avila

Elaine Szalay

Justin Santiago

Mark Santiago

Bruce Davis

Bobby Rankin

C. J. Menking

Cornell Menking

Laurie Norman

club (pianist)

Visiting Rotarians


Home Club

Mary Lee Shelton

Juárez Campestre

Student Guests



Kevin Brooks




Date Club




Submitted by Bill HartyBill Harty