Scholarship honors work, vision of former Santa Fe Mayor Gonzales

Javier Gonzales speaks during a ceremony in Santa Fe in Nov. 2014. The former Santa Fe mayor is being honored with a scholarship from the Santa Fe Community College Foundation. (Eddie Moore/Albuquerque Journal)

Javier Gonzales was a champion of the community.

This is why the Santa Fe Community College Foundation started the Javier Gonzales Memorial Presidential Title V Endowed Scholarship.

Gonzales was the mayor of Santa Fe from 2014-18 and died in February after battling cancer.

The endowment will commemorate Gonzales through scholarships for students who need additional funding to pursue higher education.

“This scholarship will carry on and honor Javier Gonzales for generations,” said Jeffery Szabat, President, SFCC Foundation Board of Directors, in a release. “It’s a wonderful example of how private and public collaboration can help students and honor community leaders like Javier Gonzales.”

The memorial scholarship currently sits at $50,000 with contributions from Century Bank, Triad/Los Alamos National Laboratory, Human Rights Alliance, Meow Wolf, PNM Resources, and SFCCF.

“Javier stood for inspiration,” said Vince Kadlubek, Meow Wolf founder and director. “He had this uncanny ability to ignite possibility in others. That’s exactly what he did for us at Meow Wolf. His belief in him in us, created a belief in ourselves, and that’s a story you’ll hear from so many people who knew Javier. We are proud to support the scholarship fund established in his honor so that the power of his inspirational spirit will live on for others.”

While older, Gonzalez made Santa Fe a sanctuary city for immigrants, as well as celebrating Indigenous Peoples Day.

He was an essential part of developing the Mobile Integrated Health Office and Santa Fe’s Alternative Response Unit, while fostering economic development initiatives that helped startups and local businesses thrive.

“Javier believed in helping the underserved and underprivileged,” said Estevan Gonzales, Javier’s brother. “I believed in the importance of education. It’s great to see the community college honoring him through this scholarship.”

To learn more about the scholarship, visit sfcc.edu/foundation/javier-gonzales-memorial-presidential-scholarship

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