Empowerment for women through pay equity, safety and health equity is the focus of the New Mexico Commission on the Status of Women. The Commission was resurrected by Governor Lujan Grisham and funded by the Legislature beginning July 1st. 13 bipartisan Commissioners have been appointed by the Governor.
Lisa Curtis, 28-year trial lawyer/business owner, married mother of four, Zane, India, Paris, and Alexandra Vigil/grandmother of three, women and children’s advocate, on Citizen’s Redistricting Committee, former State Senator (D-ABQ).
Erin Armstrong, proud auntie, sister, and daughter. Longtime advocate for healthcare access, and recognized policy expert with a focus on women’s health and rights (D-SF).
Maryann Ustick, entire career working in government and current City Manager for the City of Gallup, married mother of two, grandmother of four, big proponent of women in government (I-Gallup).
Arianna Parsons is the mother to two rambunctious boys, Thomas, 4 and Vincent 2. She and her husband have owned and operated Beck’s Coffee since 2013, which now has three locations in Las Cruces. In September of 2021 they opened a boutique bistro and wine bar, Willow+Blaine, next door to their flagship coffee location in the Mesquite Historic District. Ms. Parsons also served as the Executive Director of the Downtown Las Cruces Partnership for three years, focusing on economic development in the Main Street district (D-LC).
Kate Ferlic, attorney practicing in the areas of sexual abuse, harassment and equal pay, married mother of two boys, board president of NewMexicoWomen.Org - a philanthropic fund for women and girls in NM, worked with Gov. Richardson to create the Commission (D-SF).
Christina Herrera Furst
Christina Herrera Furst, is a teacher at Amy Biehl High School, a social-justice and service-focused charter school in downtown Albuquerque. She serves on the board of Organizers in the Land of Enchantment/OLE 501(c)3. She is a New Mexico native, with family roots tracing back to the Atrisco land grant. Christina is the mother to two inquisitive elementary-aged kids.
Leigh Ana Eugene
Leigh Ana Eugene, decade long social justice advocate, served victims of crime and their families on the Eastern side of New Mexico as the director of a rape crisis center and child advocacy center. Currently serving military service members and their families heading up the social resilience pillar of an integrated resilience team. Wife, mother, daughter, with the deepest passion for change and inclusion (R-Clovis).
Brenda Saiz is the Co-Managing Director of the Saiz, Chanez, Sherrell & Kaemper law firm, where she focuses on professional malpractice and personal injury litigation. She’s also a mom of three boys and serves as an adjunct professor and lecturer at the University of New Mexico UNM School of Law.
Gabrielle Begay from Silver City, NM. Educator and ready to help all women be successful and confident (D-Silver City).
Denise Torres, 13-year Member, 10-year Chair of Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, National Mediator for complex litigation, attorney, ranching family from Southern New Mexico (R- LC).
Mary Lane Leslie
Mary Lane Leslie, married, grandmother of 2; 25-year Taos resident and attorney. Developing a lower income housing project in Taos. Also serving on the NM Commission on Human Rights and the Taos Soil and Water Conservation District (D-Taos).
Songtree Pioche (she/her/auntie) is Taos Pueblo & Oglala Lakota married to Sanchez Pioche Sr. (Navajo) Songtree is mother to Cheyenne, Cash, and Sanchez Jr. She is an educator and community leader. A proud UNM Lobo with a degree in Native American Studies (Magna Cum Laude) She is committed to equity and inclusion in education. Songtree also serves as the Chair of the Native American Democratic Caucus of NM and Secretary of the Aztec Baseball Board. She enjoys traveling with her family to sporting events and lake days with friends.
Celina Gerese Bryant
Celina G. Bryant resides in Artesia, NM. She is the executive director for Grammy’s House Artesia Domestic Violence Shelter Inc. She is a community leader as well as an educator. She is a part of the adjunct faculty for Southeastern New Mexico College-Carlsbad (SEMC) as well as New Mexico State University. She serves as the chair for the SENMC advisory board. She earned her doctoral degree in social psychology. Her dissertation was a qualitative study on help-seeking behaviors of female survivors of domestic violence. She enjoys traveling abroad and spending quality time with husband of 35 years as well as her labradoodle, Bentley.