2014

  • Garett Reppenhagen, Rocky Mountain West Coordinator of the Vet Voice Foundation
    Huffington Post

    This week veterans all over the nation applaud President Obama’s use of the Antiquities Act to protect the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks region in Southern NM. Creating this new national monument ensures the preservation of a scenic public landscape rich with history, recreational opportunities and wildlife habitat. Included in the protected area are six of the historical Deming Bombing targets used by the Army Air corps for training missions during World War II. These “bulls-eye” targets were used to test equipment that greatly improved the accuracy of high-altitude bombing for U.S. warplanes, and were a major factor in ending World War II in Europe.

    Today the sites are an important window into our nation’s past. The new Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument ensures their protection, and that future generations will remember the sacrifices made by our men and women in the military who served here and better understand the history of our country.

    Protected public lands like the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument also serve as a great healing aid for soldiers returning home, who suffer from debilitating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, brain injuries, trauma, anxiety and depression. So many men and women, who have fought bravely for our independence, make great sacrifices and often pay a steep price. In fact, almost 40% of veterans who have served in Iraq are diagnosed with a mental health issue. Places of natural beauty are perfect locales for fighting pain and mental stresses, and this has been borne out by scientific studies.

    The natural setting of phenomenal scenery, wildlife habitat for a fabulous array of birds and mammals, and many opportunities for outdoor recreation, makes the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks a wonderful place where veterans with PTSD symptoms can experience a temporary sanctuary — free of stresses and uncertainties, a place with no worries where they can relax, enjoy themselves and their surroundings. Men and women, who deal with chronic pain or horrific flashbacks every day, can find a peace they haven’t known for a long time. In my own transition from being a U.S. Army sniper to civilian life, access to public lands helped me tremendously to navigate the way back.

    But healing outdoor opportunities like those provided in the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks may not survive unless we work to protect them. And it appears we must work hard. Earlier in the year, House Republicans took aim to curtail the President’s ability to protect our nation’s rich military and cultural heritage and limit his ability to use the Antiquities Act to conserve national parks and monuments. I do not understand this. Conservation — like support for military budgets, veterans’ benefits, and other critical issues – should never be a partisan affair.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks is the crossroads of New Mexico’s diverse history and culture, filled with natural wonders and incredible hunting and recreational opportunities. Veterans across America thank New Mexico Senators Udall and Heinrich for introducing legislation to help call attention to this wondrous land, and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell for taking the time to visit the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region and listening to the input of Las Cruces area veterans. Above all we are grateful for President Obama’s leadership in working with a wide variety of communities and constituents who wanted so much to see this place they love protected.

  • Garett Reppenhagen, Rocky Mountain West Coordinator of the Vet Voice Foundation
    Huffington Post

    This week veterans all over the nation applaud President Obama’s use of the Antiquities Act to protect the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks region in Southern NM. Creating this new national monument ensures the preservation of a scenic public landscape rich with history, recreational opportunities and wildlife habitat. Included in the protected area are six of the historical Deming Bombing targets used by the Army Air corps for training missions during World War II. These “bulls-eye” targets were used to test equipment that greatly improved the accuracy of high-altitude bombing for U.S. warplanes, and were a major factor in ending World War II in Europe.

    Today the sites are an important window into our nation’s past. The new Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument ensures their protection, and that future generations will remember the sacrifices made by our men and women in the military who served here and better understand the history of our country.

    Protected public lands like the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument also serve as a great healing aid for soldiers returning home, who suffer from debilitating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, brain injuries, trauma, anxiety and depression. So many men and women, who have fought bravely for our independence, make great sacrifices and often pay a steep price. In fact, almost 40% of veterans who have served in Iraq are diagnosed with a mental health issue. Places of natural beauty are perfect locales for fighting pain and mental stresses, and this has been borne out by scientific studies.

    The natural setting of phenomenal scenery, wildlife habitat for a fabulous array of birds and mammals, and many opportunities for outdoor recreation, makes the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks a wonderful place where veterans with PTSD symptoms can experience a temporary sanctuary — free of stresses and uncertainties, a place with no worries where they can relax, enjoy themselves and their surroundings. Men and women, who deal with chronic pain or horrific flashbacks every day, can find a peace they haven’t known for a long time. In my own transition from being a U.S. Army sniper to civilian life, access to public lands helped me tremendously to navigate the way back.

    But healing outdoor opportunities like those provided in the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks may not survive unless we work to protect them. And it appears we must work hard. Earlier in the year, House Republicans took aim to curtail the President’s ability to protect our nation’s rich military and cultural heritage and limit his ability to use the Antiquities Act to conserve national parks and monuments. I do not understand this. Conservation — like support for military budgets, veterans’ benefits, and other critical issues – should never be a partisan affair.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks is the crossroads of New Mexico’s diverse history and culture, filled with natural wonders and incredible hunting and recreational opportunities. Veterans across America thank New Mexico Senators Udall and Heinrich for introducing legislation to help call attention to this wondrous land, and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell for taking the time to visit the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region and listening to the input of Las Cruces area veterans. Above all we are grateful for President Obama’s leadership in working with a wide variety of communities and constituents who wanted so much to see this place they love protected.

  • New Mexico Mercury
    By Arianna Parsons
    May 2, 2014

    Recently I had the privilege of participating in a convening of business owners from the Taos area to celebrate the first anniversary of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in northern New Mexico. The consensus among these business owners was clear: just one year in and the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument has been good for local businesses.

    As our community discusses the prospect of a new national Monument in the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region, I think it’s important to look at the data and lessons from our neighbors in the north.

    Since designation on March 25th, 2013, data show the Town of Taos Lodgers’ Tax Revenue increased by 21 percent in the second half of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012, amounting to an increase of nearly $100,000 revenue.

    In addition, gross-receipts revenue to businesses in Taos County in the Accommodations and Food Service sector was 8.3-percent ($3.7 million) higher for the second half of 2013 than for the same period of 2012. This increase in gross receipts for Taos County outpaced the statewide increase for Accommodations and Food Service by 1.8 percent over the same period.

    The Bureau of Land Management’s Taos Field Office (BLM) reported late last year a 40% increase in visitors in less than one year since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument designation. In fiscal year 2013, which ended last September 30, the BLM reported 182,501 visitors to the areas within the monument, compared to 130,002 visitors in fiscal year 2012.

    As I listened to the economic data being shared and the personal testimonials being provided by Taos-area business owners, I couldn’t help but get excited about what a similar national monument designation could do for the economy here in southern New Mexico. 

    That’s why I am looking forward to a potential national monument at Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks. A recent economic study found that the proposed monument here would result in $7.4 million in new annual economic activity and create new jobs.

    The one year that has passed since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument’s inception is proof that these kinds of projections are not at all far-fetched, and in fact, are likely to come to fruition.

    We have so many reasons to be optimistic. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich played an integral role in encouraging President Obama to create the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument last March. They are putting forward the same kind of effort again – having introduced the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act last December.

    The lands within the proposed monument already play a big role in our community and they deserve to be protected – not only for future generations to enjoy, but also because a new monument will benefit businesses and create jobs here in Las Cruces.

  • New Mexico Mercury
    By Arianna Parsons
    May 2, 2014

    Recently I had the privilege of participating in a convening of business owners from the Taos area to celebrate the first anniversary of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in northern New Mexico. The consensus among these business owners was clear: just one year in and the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument has been good for local businesses.

    As our community discusses the prospect of a new national Monument in the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region, I think it’s important to look at the data and lessons from our neighbors in the north.

    Since designation on March 25th, 2013, data show the Town of Taos Lodgers’ Tax Revenue increased by 21 percent in the second half of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012, amounting to an increase of nearly $100,000 revenue.

    In addition, gross-receipts revenue to businesses in Taos County in the Accommodations and Food Service sector was 8.3-percent ($3.7 million) higher for the second half of 2013 than for the same period of 2012. This increase in gross receipts for Taos County outpaced the statewide increase for Accommodations and Food Service by 1.8 percent over the same period.

    The Bureau of Land Management’s Taos Field Office (BLM) reported late last year a 40% increase in visitors in less than one year since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument designation. In fiscal year 2013, which ended last September 30, the BLM reported 182,501 visitors to the areas within the monument, compared to 130,002 visitors in fiscal year 2012.

    As I listened to the economic data being shared and the personal testimonials being provided by Taos-area business owners, I couldn’t help but get excited about what a similar national monument designation could do for the economy here in southern New Mexico. 

    That’s why I am looking forward to a potential national monument at Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks. A recent economic study found that the proposed monument here would result in $7.4 million in new annual economic activity and create new jobs.

    The one year that has passed since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument’s inception is proof that these kinds of projections are not at all far-fetched, and in fact, are likely to come to fruition.

    We have so many reasons to be optimistic. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich played an integral role in encouraging President Obama to create the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument last March. They are putting forward the same kind of effort again – having introduced the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act last December.

    The lands within the proposed monument already play a big role in our community and they deserve to be protected – not only for future generations to enjoy, but also because a new monument will benefit businesses and create jobs here in Las Cruces.

  • New Mexico Mercury
    By Arianna Parsons
    May 2, 2014

    Recently I had the privilege of participating in a convening of business owners from the Taos area to celebrate the first anniversary of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in northern New Mexico. The consensus among these business owners was clear: just one year in and the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument has been good for local businesses.

    As our community discusses the prospect of a new national Monument in the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region, I think it’s important to look at the data and lessons from our neighbors in the north.

    Since designation on March 25th, 2013, data show the Town of Taos Lodgers’ Tax Revenue increased by 21 percent in the second half of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012, amounting to an increase of nearly $100,000 revenue.

    In addition, gross-receipts revenue to businesses in Taos County in the Accommodations and Food Service sector was 8.3-percent ($3.7 million) higher for the second half of 2013 than for the same period of 2012. This increase in gross receipts for Taos County outpaced the statewide increase for Accommodations and Food Service by 1.8 percent over the same period.

    The Bureau of Land Management’s Taos Field Office (BLM) reported late last year a 40% increase in visitors in less than one year since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument designation. In fiscal year 2013, which ended last September 30, the BLM reported 182,501 visitors to the areas within the monument, compared to 130,002 visitors in fiscal year 2012.

    As I listened to the economic data being shared and the personal testimonials being provided by Taos-area business owners, I couldn’t help but get excited about what a similar national monument designation could do for the economy here in southern New Mexico. 

    That’s why I am looking forward to a potential national monument at Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks. A recent economic study found that the proposed monument here would result in $7.4 million in new annual economic activity and create new jobs.

    The one year that has passed since the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument’s inception is proof that these kinds of projections are not at all far-fetched, and in fact, are likely to come to fruition.

    We have so many reasons to be optimistic. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich played an integral role in encouraging President Obama to create the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument last March. They are putting forward the same kind of effort again – having introduced the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act last December.

    The lands within the proposed monument already play a big role in our community and they deserve to be protected – not only for future generations to enjoy, but also because a new monument will benefit businesses and create jobs here in Las Cruces.

  • Listen to the interview here

    President Obama will sign a proclamation Wednesday establishing the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. The signing ceremony will occur at the Department of the Interior.

    In a prepared statement, the White House said, “By establishing the monument, the President will permanently protect nearly 500,000 acres to preserve the prehistoric, historic, and scientific values of the area for the benefit of all Americans.”

    District 35 State Representative Jeff Steinborn is also the Southern New Mexico Director for the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance.

    In an interview with KRWG News, Steinborn said wide community support was important in securing the President’s decision.

    The White House said, “A recent independent study found that a new national monument could generate $7.4 million dollars in new economic activity annually from new visitors and business opportunities while preserving access for sportsmen, ranchers, and recreational users.”

    Some ranchers have been opposed to the monument proposal by Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, which also would have protected the nearly half million acres to be designated as a Monument by the President’s Wednesday proclamation.

  • Listen to the interview here

    President Obama will sign a proclamation Wednesday establishing the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. The signing ceremony will occur at the Department of the Interior.

    In a prepared statement, the White House said, “By establishing the monument, the President will permanently protect nearly 500,000 acres to preserve the prehistoric, historic, and scientific values of the area for the benefit of all Americans.”

    District 35 State Representative Jeff Steinborn is also the Southern New Mexico Director for the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance.

    In an interview with KRWG News, Steinborn said wide community support was important in securing the President’s decision.

    The White House said, “A recent independent study found that a new national monument could generate $7.4 million dollars in new economic activity annually from new visitors and business opportunities while preserving access for sportsmen, ranchers, and recreational users.”

    Some ranchers have been opposed to the monument proposal by Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, which also would have protected the nearly half million acres to be designated as a Monument by the President’s Wednesday proclamation.

  • Listen to the interview here

    President Obama will sign a proclamation Wednesday establishing the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. The signing ceremony will occur at the Department of the Interior.

    In a prepared statement, the White House said, “By establishing the monument, the President will permanently protect nearly 500,000 acres to preserve the prehistoric, historic, and scientific values of the area for the benefit of all Americans.”

    District 35 State Representative Jeff Steinborn is also the Southern New Mexico Director for the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance.

    In an interview with KRWG News, Steinborn said wide community support was important in securing the President’s decision.

    The White House said, “A recent independent study found that a new national monument could generate $7.4 million dollars in new economic activity annually from new visitors and business opportunities while preserving access for sportsmen, ranchers, and recreational users.”

    Some ranchers have been opposed to the monument proposal by Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, which also would have protected the nearly half million acres to be designated as a Monument by the President’s Wednesday proclamation.

  • For Immediate Release
    May 19, 2014

    Contact:
    Jeff Steinborn, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 575-635-5615

    LAS CRUCES, NM (May 19, 2014)–President Obama today announced plans to designate the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in southern New Mexico on Wednesday. This move will protect 496,000 acres in Doña Ana County, including the Organ Mountains, Sierra de las Uvas Mountains, and Greater Potrillo Mountains volcanic field. The new monument protects some of Doña Ana County’s most iconic mountains on the local skyline including the Organ, Doña Ana and Robledo mountains, and Picacho Peak. NM Wild Southern New Mexico Director Jeff Steinborn and Conservation Coordinator Nathan Small have been invited to attend the signing ceremony this Wednesday with President Obama in Washington D.C.

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) cheered the designation, and applauded President Barack Obama and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell for their preservation of this unique Chihuahuan Desert landscape. NM Wild also lauded U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall for their work to develop the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act, and for their leadership protecting this landscape for generations to come.

    NM Wild has been working for 10 years to permanently protect this southern New Mexico landscape.

    Steinborn, who is also a state representative in addition to his role with NM Wild, applauded the president’s action. “With the historic establishment of the Organ Mountain-Desert Peaks National Monument, our nation achieves a truly significant conservation milestone. This new monument will enable countless generations of citizens to enjoy and learn from our diverse Chihuahuan Desert wildlands, and the rich history and archaeological sites that exist in them. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to President Obama and Sens. Udall and Heinrich for their visionary leadership.”

    On January 25, 2014, Secretary Jewell visited Las Cruces and held a town hall event to seek input from a standing-room-only group of supporters that overwhelmingly supported the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument proposal.

    The national monument proposal was broadly backed by the local community—in a recent survey, more than 70 percent of people said they supported an Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    Doña Ana County landscape conservation efforts began in the early 1980s when the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began granting temporary protections for eight local Wilderness Study Areas across the county within the Organ, Potrillo, and Robledo mountains. NM Wild opened and staffed its field office in Las Cruces in 2004, and in 2005 organized a community coalition to work toward the permanent protection of these lands along with other areas identified that possessed outstanding ecological and historical importance.

    In the last 10 years, diverse members of the community including elected officials, business owners, historians, tribal governments, sportsmen, conservationists, and thousands of citizens have urged New Mexico’s federal delegation to move forward to protect this landscape. This Wednesday, under the authority of President Obama, these efforts will come to fruition with the designation of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    “We are proud to have helped organize the dynamic coalition of community members to permanently protect many of our most important natural and historic resources in Doña Ana County,” said Small, who is also a Las Cruces city councilor in addition to his role with NM Wild. “NM Wild is made up of local leaders and thousands of members in every corner of our state and beyond, who are actively involved in protecting the best of the Land of Enchantment.”

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument possesses a vast array of unique plants and animals, some only found in this region.

    It also contains important archaeological, geological, and historical sites including the Butterfield Stagecoach Trail, Apollo Space Mission training site at Kilbourne Hole, World War II bombardier training targets, and thousands of Native American petroglyphs and pictographs.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument designation caps a historic year and a half period in New Mexico that also saw the designation of the 242,455 acre Rio Grande del Norte National Monument outside Taos in 2013.

    NM Wild Executive Director Mark Allison noted the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as an important step in protecting New Mexico’s natural heritage. “New Mexico is blessed with rich public lands, and iconic landscapes that make us ‘the Land of Enchantment.’ Given the importance of our diverse public lands ecologically, and in many cases culturally, we must continue to work towards their protection. This designation is a result of a decade-long effort and is ultimately a testament to New Mexicans’ love of their land and its people, past, present and future.”

    ###

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) is a non-profit 501(C)(3), grassroots, environmental organization dedicated to the protection, restoration, and continued enjoyment of New Mexico’s wildlands and Wilderness areas. The primary goal of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance is to ensure the protection and restoration of all remaining wild lands in New Mexico through administrative designations, federal Wilderness designation, and ongoing stewardship.

  • For Immediate Release
    May 19, 2014

    Contact:
    Jeff Steinborn, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 575-635-5615

    LAS CRUCES, NM (May 19, 2014)–President Obama today announced plans to designate the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in southern New Mexico on Wednesday. This move will protect 496,000 acres in Doña Ana County, including the Organ Mountains, Sierra de las Uvas Mountains, and Greater Potrillo Mountains volcanic field. The new monument protects some of Doña Ana County’s most iconic mountains on the local skyline including the Organ, Doña Ana and Robledo mountains, and Picacho Peak. NM Wild Southern New Mexico Director Jeff Steinborn and Conservation Coordinator Nathan Small have been invited to attend the signing ceremony this Wednesday with President Obama in Washington D.C.

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) cheered the designation, and applauded President Barack Obama and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell for their preservation of this unique Chihuahuan Desert landscape. NM Wild also lauded U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall for their work to develop the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act, and for their leadership protecting this landscape for generations to come.

    NM Wild has been working for 10 years to permanently protect this southern New Mexico landscape.

    Steinborn, who is also a state representative in addition to his role with NM Wild, applauded the president’s action. “With the historic establishment of the Organ Mountain-Desert Peaks National Monument, our nation achieves a truly significant conservation milestone. This new monument will enable countless generations of citizens to enjoy and learn from our diverse Chihuahuan Desert wildlands, and the rich history and archaeological sites that exist in them. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to President Obama and Sens. Udall and Heinrich for their visionary leadership.”

    On January 25, 2014, Secretary Jewell visited Las Cruces and held a town hall event to seek input from a standing-room-only group of supporters that overwhelmingly supported the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument proposal.

    The national monument proposal was broadly backed by the local community—in a recent survey, more than 70 percent of people said they supported an Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    Doña Ana County landscape conservation efforts began in the early 1980s when the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began granting temporary protections for eight local Wilderness Study Areas across the county within the Organ, Potrillo, and Robledo mountains. NM Wild opened and staffed its field office in Las Cruces in 2004, and in 2005 organized a community coalition to work toward the permanent protection of these lands along with other areas identified that possessed outstanding ecological and historical importance.

    In the last 10 years, diverse members of the community including elected officials, business owners, historians, tribal governments, sportsmen, conservationists, and thousands of citizens have urged New Mexico’s federal delegation to move forward to protect this landscape. This Wednesday, under the authority of President Obama, these efforts will come to fruition with the designation of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    “We are proud to have helped organize the dynamic coalition of community members to permanently protect many of our most important natural and historic resources in Doña Ana County,” said Small, who is also a Las Cruces city councilor in addition to his role with NM Wild. “NM Wild is made up of local leaders and thousands of members in every corner of our state and beyond, who are actively involved in protecting the best of the Land of Enchantment.”

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument possesses a vast array of unique plants and animals, some only found in this region.

    It also contains important archaeological, geological, and historical sites including the Butterfield Stagecoach Trail, Apollo Space Mission training site at Kilbourne Hole, World War II bombardier training targets, and thousands of Native American petroglyphs and pictographs.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument designation caps a historic year and a half period in New Mexico that also saw the designation of the 242,455 acre Rio Grande del Norte National Monument outside Taos in 2013.

    NM Wild Executive Director Mark Allison noted the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as an important step in protecting New Mexico’s natural heritage. “New Mexico is blessed with rich public lands, and iconic landscapes that make us ‘the Land of Enchantment.’ Given the importance of our diverse public lands ecologically, and in many cases culturally, we must continue to work towards their protection. This designation is a result of a decade-long effort and is ultimately a testament to New Mexicans’ love of their land and its people, past, present and future.”

    ###

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) is a non-profit 501(C)(3), grassroots, environmental organization dedicated to the protection, restoration, and continued enjoyment of New Mexico’s wildlands and Wilderness areas. The primary goal of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance is to ensure the protection and restoration of all remaining wild lands in New Mexico through administrative designations, federal Wilderness designation, and ongoing stewardship.

  • For Immediate Release
    May 19, 2014

    Contact:
    Jeff Steinborn, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 575-635-5615

    LAS CRUCES, NM (May 19, 2014)–President Obama today announced plans to designate the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in southern New Mexico on Wednesday. This move will protect 496,000 acres in Doña Ana County, including the Organ Mountains, Sierra de las Uvas Mountains, and Greater Potrillo Mountains volcanic field. The new monument protects some of Doña Ana County’s most iconic mountains on the local skyline including the Organ, Doña Ana and Robledo mountains, and Picacho Peak. NM Wild Southern New Mexico Director Jeff Steinborn and Conservation Coordinator Nathan Small have been invited to attend the signing ceremony this Wednesday with President Obama in Washington D.C.

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) cheered the designation, and applauded President Barack Obama and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell for their preservation of this unique Chihuahuan Desert landscape. NM Wild also lauded U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall for their work to develop the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act, and for their leadership protecting this landscape for generations to come.

    NM Wild has been working for 10 years to permanently protect this southern New Mexico landscape.

    Steinborn, who is also a state representative in addition to his role with NM Wild, applauded the president’s action. “With the historic establishment of the Organ Mountain-Desert Peaks National Monument, our nation achieves a truly significant conservation milestone. This new monument will enable countless generations of citizens to enjoy and learn from our diverse Chihuahuan Desert wildlands, and the rich history and archaeological sites that exist in them. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to President Obama and Sens. Udall and Heinrich for their visionary leadership.”

    On January 25, 2014, Secretary Jewell visited Las Cruces and held a town hall event to seek input from a standing-room-only group of supporters that overwhelmingly supported the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument proposal.

    The national monument proposal was broadly backed by the local community—in a recent survey, more than 70 percent of people said they supported an Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    Doña Ana County landscape conservation efforts began in the early 1980s when the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began granting temporary protections for eight local Wilderness Study Areas across the county within the Organ, Potrillo, and Robledo mountains. NM Wild opened and staffed its field office in Las Cruces in 2004, and in 2005 organized a community coalition to work toward the permanent protection of these lands along with other areas identified that possessed outstanding ecological and historical importance.

    In the last 10 years, diverse members of the community including elected officials, business owners, historians, tribal governments, sportsmen, conservationists, and thousands of citizens have urged New Mexico’s federal delegation to move forward to protect this landscape. This Wednesday, under the authority of President Obama, these efforts will come to fruition with the designation of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    “We are proud to have helped organize the dynamic coalition of community members to permanently protect many of our most important natural and historic resources in Doña Ana County,” said Small, who is also a Las Cruces city councilor in addition to his role with NM Wild. “NM Wild is made up of local leaders and thousands of members in every corner of our state and beyond, who are actively involved in protecting the best of the Land of Enchantment.”

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument possesses a vast array of unique plants and animals, some only found in this region.

    It also contains important archaeological, geological, and historical sites including the Butterfield Stagecoach Trail, Apollo Space Mission training site at Kilbourne Hole, World War II bombardier training targets, and thousands of Native American petroglyphs and pictographs.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument designation caps a historic year and a half period in New Mexico that also saw the designation of the 242,455 acre Rio Grande del Norte National Monument outside Taos in 2013.

    NM Wild Executive Director Mark Allison noted the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as an important step in protecting New Mexico’s natural heritage. “New Mexico is blessed with rich public lands, and iconic landscapes that make us ‘the Land of Enchantment.’ Given the importance of our diverse public lands ecologically, and in many cases culturally, we must continue to work towards their protection. This designation is a result of a decade-long effort and is ultimately a testament to New Mexicans’ love of their land and its people, past, present and future.”

    ###

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) is a non-profit 501(C)(3), grassroots, environmental organization dedicated to the protection, restoration, and continued enjoyment of New Mexico’s wildlands and Wilderness areas. The primary goal of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance is to ensure the protection and restoration of all remaining wild lands in New Mexico through administrative designations, federal Wilderness designation, and ongoing stewardship.

  • For Immediate Release

    Contact:

    Jeff Steinborn, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 575-635-5615

    LAS CRUCES, NM (May 19, 2014) –President Obama today announced plans to designate the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in southern New Mexico on Wednesday. This move will protect 496,000 acres in Doña Ana County, including the Organ Mountains, Sierra de las Uvas Mountains, and Greater Potrillo Mountains volcanic field. The new monument protects some of Doña Ana County’s most iconic mountains on the local skyline including the Organ, Doña Ana and Robledo mountains, and Picacho Peak. NM Wild Southern New Mexico Director Jeff Steinborn and Conservation Coordinator Nathan Small have been invited to attend the signing ceremony this Wednesday with President Obama in Washington D.C.

    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) cheered the designation, and applauded President Barack Obama and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell for their preservation of this unique Chihuahuan Desert landscape. NM Wild also lauded U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall for their work to develop the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks Conservation Act, and for their leadership protecting this landscape for generations to come.

    NM Wild has been working for 10 years to permanently protect this southern New Mexico landscape.

    Steinborn, who is also a state representative in addition to his role with NM Wild, applauded the president’s action. “With the historic establishment of the Organ Mountain-Desert Peaks National Monument, our nation achieves a truly significant conservation milestone. This new monument will enable countless generations of citizens to enjoy and learn from our diverse Chihuahuan Desert wildlands, and the rich history and archaeological sites that exist in them. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to President Obama and Sens. Udall and Heinrich for their visionary leadership.”

    On January 25, 2014, Secretary Jewell visited Las Cruces and held a town hall event to seek input from a standing-room-only group of supporters that overwhelmingly supported the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument proposal.

    The national monument proposal was broadly backed by the local community—in a recent survey, more than 70 percent of people said they supported an Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    Doña Ana County landscape conservation efforts began in the early 1980s when the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began granting temporary protections for eight local Wilderness Study Areas across the county within the Organ, Potrillo, and Robledo mountains. NM Wild opened and staffed its field office in Las Cruces in 2004, and in 2005 organized a community coalition to work toward the permanent protection of these lands along with other areas identified that possessed outstanding ecological and historical importance.

    In the last 10 years, diverse members of the community including elected officials, business owners, historians, tribal governments, sportsmen, conservationists, and thousands of citizens have urged New Mexico’s federal delegation to move forward to protect this landscape. This Wednesday, under the authority of President Obama, these efforts will come to fruition with the designation of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

    “We are proud to have helped organize the dynamic coalition of community members to permanently protect many of our most important natural and historic resources in Doña Ana County,” said Small, who is also a Las Cruces city councilor in addition to his role with NM Wild. “NM Wild is made up of local leaders and thousands of members in every corner of our state and beyond, who are actively involved in protecting the best of the Land of Enchantment.”

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument possesses a vast array of unique plants and animals, some only found in this region.

    It also contains important archaeological, geological, and historical sites including the Butterfield Stagecoach Trail, Apollo Space Mission training site at Kilbourne Hole, World War II bombardier training targets, and thousands of Native American petroglyphs and pictographs.

    The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument designation caps a historic year and a half period in New Mexico that also saw the designation of the 242,455 acre Rio Grande del Norte National Monument outside Taos in 2013.

    NM Wild Executive Director Mark Allison noted the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as an important step in protecting New Mexico’s natural heritage. “New Mexico is blessed with rich public lands, and iconic landscapes that make us ‘the Land of Enchantment.’ Given the importance of our diverse public lands ecologically, and in many cases culturally, we must continue to work towards their protection. This designation is a result of a decade-long effort and is ultimately a testament to New Mexicans’ love of their land and its people, past, present and future.”

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    The New Mexico Wilderness Alliance (NM Wild) is a non-profit 501(C)(3), grassroots, environmental organization dedicated to the protection, restoration, and continued enjoyment of New Mexico’s wildlands and Wilderness areas. The primary goal of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance is to ensure the protection and restoration of all remaining wild lands in New Mexico through administrative designations, federal Wilderness designation, and ongoing stewardship.

  • Testimonial – Angel Pena 

  • Testimonial – Angel Pena 

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