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Ybarra selected as NMSU's director of presidential events

Former New Mexico State University student regent Felicia Ybarra has been selected as the director of presidential events at the university. She begins her new position today, Feb. 21.



Former New Mexico State University student regent Felicia Ybarra has been selected as the director of presidential events at the university. (NMSU photo by Darren Phillips)

Ybarra served as a student regent from 2003 to 2005. She graduated from NMSU in December 2004 with a bachelor's degree in hotel, restaurant and tourism management. Ybarra has worked for the Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce, Southwest Counseling Center, and the NMSU Office of the Assistant to the President. She also completed an internship with the Las Cruces Convention and Visitors Bureau.

"From a pool of qualified applicants, Felicia, who is well known to NMSU from her role as a student regent, excelled through the interviewing process and brings important skills and knowledge to the position," said Janet Green, interim department head of the Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management Department, who served on the selection committee. "The fact that she is an outstanding graduate from the department makes us doubly proud to have her on board."

"I am very excited to continue my involvement with the university and to put my training to use," Ybarra said. "This position appealed to me for a combination of reasons. I wanted to stay in Las Cruces and continue my experiences with NMSU. I also wanted to apply my degree to my career."

The director of presidential events will work closely with the president's office, the president's spouse and the campus community to organize events involving the president and his spouse. The position has been expanded from an hourly contract to a full-time position and will now include protocol responsibilities.

"NMSU's expanding role as an international university requires that we learn more about the cultures and expectations of visiting dignitaries," said Rebecca Dukes, vice president for university advancement, who will oversee the position. "The university has increasingly been involved with the community and state in joint programs, which requires meetings with community and state leaders. We need someone who can work with the community and its leaders to ensure successful coordination of meetings and proper protocol at ceremonies."