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NMSU College of Arts and Sciences to get first academic chair

A $1 million gift from a New Mexico State University alum will help the College of Arts and Sciences establish its first endowed chair.

L. Johnson and his wife, Judy, will present the gift to the Department of Geological Sciences at 5 p.m. Thursday, July 27, at the Stan Fulton Center on the NMSU campus.

Johnson said he wanted to make the gift at this time to strengthen the foundation of excellence in the sciences at NMSU and to help fulfill the urgent need to educate the next generation of earth scientists in the U.S. He chairs the science advisory council of the College of Arts and Sciences, a council that actively advocates all sciences and that works on improving the sciences at NMSU.

"We try to use our contacts in various industries and public sector areas to seek funding support for the programs," Johnson said, adding these contacts help raise the profile of the sciences at NMSU to potential students and faculty.

Johnson retired from ConocoPhillips Company in 2002 after a long career that took him to 57 countries
around the world. He said his undergraduate education at NMSU was instrumental in his success.

Johnson graduated from NMSU in 1972 with a bachelor's degree in geological sciences.
He also has earned a master's degree in geology from Rice University and a master of science degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

For more information on the College of Arts and Sciences Endowment Fund, call Riis Gonzales at (505) 646-5276.

First photo is available at http://ucommphoto.nmsu.edu/newsphoto/johnson_michael.jpg.
CUTLINE: Michael L. Johnson, photographed earlier this year when he was inducted into the NMSU Department of Geological Sciences Alumni Hall of Fame. (NMSU photo by David Pierre)

Media/photographers, please note: The gift presentation will take place at 5 p.m. Thursday, July 27, at the Stan Fulton Center on the NMSU campus.

Bob Nosbisch
July 17, 2006