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Aldaz scholarship continues her legacy of teaching


Anna-Marie Aldaz touched the lives of many, through friends and family and the students she encountered while teaching. As a receiver of multiple awards for teaching, Aldaz dedicated her life to enriching students' lives with learning.

 She was passionate about teaching Spanish to students and encouraging them to be multilingual, something she was proud to see from her son and grandson. Aldaz also loved literature. Through teaching, amongst many other ways, she touched the lives of many students.

“Teaching was her life,” says former student Xia Li from Aldaz’s English class. “Even though she was sick, she was still teaching English as a second language (ESL) and tutoring students until the last time of her life.”

Aldaz’s legacy continues on in the heart of New Mexico. The Anna-Marie Aldaz Scholarship assists students attending Dona Ana Community College and whose native language is not English. Students who demonstrate financial need and are studying ESL or students studying English as a supplemental piece to their graduation and potential career success can be selected as recipients of this scholarship.

Though the loss of a loved one is never easy, those who were touched by Aldaz and those who hear her story can take comfort in knowing her legacy will live on, and she will still be touching the lives of multilingual students, just as she did during her time here on Earth.

“She lived a remarkable and full life. It sounds to me that she went out in the same graceful and beautiful style as she always lived by. I count my life better for having known her.” said friend Adam Deibel.

Aldaz’s passing left a void for so many. It takes a special person to touch the lives of so many people and to dedicate themselves selflessly to others. She was a wife, a mother, a grandmother, a sibling, and a friend to many.

The Anna-Marie Aldaz Scholarship is housed at the Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico, which houses more than 35 scholarships within the endowment.

In 2020, with support of a scholarship committee, it was able to award 220 students with more than $210,000 scholarship dollars. Scholarships can be set up in a variety of ways to support students both in southern New Mexico and throughout the US. If you are interested in setting up a scholarship, please reach out the foundation.

Terra Winter is executive director of the Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico. She can be reached at terra@cfsnm.org. To make a donation to the Anna-Marie Aldaz Scholarship Fund, visit www.CFSNM.org or the CFSNM Instagram/Facebook pages.

Anna-Marie Aldaz