Welcome to our new web site!

To give our readers a chance to experience all that our new website has to offer, we have made all content freely avaiable, through October 1, 2018.

During this time, print and digital subscribers will not need to log in to view our stories or e-editions.

LAS CRUCES PUBLIC SCHOOLS SUPERINTENDENT KAREN TRUJILLO

LCPS superintendent remembered and Scholarship Fund established

Posted

Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Karen Trujillo was struck by a vehicle and killed Feb. 25 in Las Cruces.

Here are comments about her from people who knew and worked with her.

LCPS Board of Education Vice President Carol Cooper: “Many of us in our state, nation and world observe daily that we are increasingly, woefully, short of love. Those of us who had the privilege of knowing Karen Trujillo, even for a short time, knew Karen was a wonderful reflection of the Love God has for all of His Creation – expressed in her compassion and kindness, wisdom, and value she placed on every individual – student, parent, teacher, staff member, community member and board member. She called us ‘team.’  As her husband pointed out, we rarely (if ever) heard ‘I’ or ‘my’; ‘we all’ are the team, working to enable the next generation to prepare for life.  May what feels like ‘loss’ right now, ultimately be revealed as Karen’s profound legacy to all of us. I did not know Karen before I became a board member, but she truly inspired everyone around her to be our very best, to find strength when we felt weak.”

LCPS Board of Education member and retired bilingual educator Terrie Dallman: “Approximately two years ago, Dr. Karen Trujillo generously and without reservation took on our fractured school district. Not only did she embrace every aspect and challenge whole heartily; she quickly initiated reparation of our district’s integrity, reputation, and community trust. Unwavering, Dr. Trujillo led the district through this difficult pandemic and a debilitating cyberattack; more importantly though, she overcame daily obstacles with grace, dignity, and resolution. Commitment, dedication, perseverance, and tenacity are descriptors that come to mind when I reflect on her character and community service. Her imprint on Las Cruces Public Schools will live for years to come but remembered even longer.  Dr. Trujillo will be missed.”

LCPS teacher Gail Wheeler: “She had such an impact on so many areas of the community. I knew her through theater, through having her kids in writing camp, through education activism, and as the leader of the whole district. She was always kind and gracious and really did care about kids on every level.” Trujillo was in the cast of “Belles,” which Wheeler directed at Las Cruces Community Theatre in 2011. Trujillo “was brave to try a new thing like acting and she did a great job,” Wheeler said.

Mayor Ken Miyagishima: “God bless the Trujillo and Apodaca families. RIP Dr. Karen Trujillo, we will always remember you and the great job you did.”

David Edwards of Las Cruces: “Karen came to my drama class in her senior year at Mayfield (High School). I was fortunate to direct her in a domestic drama – the title of which I do not recall. She was the matriarch and had the maturity and stage presence to be able to pull the role off with impressive skill. Even though I wasn’t able to have her in class for more than a brief time, I developed a respect and admiration for her talent. I keenly followed her post-high school career and was proud of her accomplishments. I was stunned and deeply saddened by her sudden passing.”

NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu; “Dr. Trujillo served our university for many years as a teacher, administrator and researcher before going on to serve as LCPS superintendent. She did what we hope each of our graduates is able to do: to take the knowledge and experience they gain from their time at NMSU and use those tools to make our community and our world a better place. Her death is an enormous loss for everyone who knew her, and especially for the countless number of students whose lives are better today because of her efforts.”

NMSU College of Education Interim Dean Henrietta Pichon (from an NMSU news release): “This is an enormous loss to her family, LCPS, the learning community of New Mexico and beyond. Although she was no longer walking the halls of O’Donnell Hall, we remained connected to her through educational and socially just initiatives.”

NMSU SOAR Evaluation and Policy Center Director Rachel Boren (NMSU news release): “Dr. Trujillo’s passion for education was clear in everything that she did. Her enthusiasm for K-12 and higher education in the state was so genuine, and she was always excited to collaborate on new and innovative ideas that would benefit students, schools, and communities across the state.”

NMSU Interim Department Head of Innovative Media Research and Extension Barbara Chamberlin (NMSU news release): “Our Math Snacks project is a microcosm of how many ways Karen influenced education. For our project, which she first joined as a project manager, she worked with teachers in professional development of how to teach math, she created written curricular tools for use in classes, and she advised on games and how they should work. She also contributed to and led many aspects of the research, identifying when and in what circumstances they work,” Chamberlin continued. “And she did administrative work, writing reports and new grant proposals. Along the way, she influenced people in significant ways, guiding life choices and career paths. It is the perfect example of how very competent she was in so many areas.”

LCPS Chief of Staff Sean Barham (from an LCPS news release): “This is an unimaginable loss. Dr. Trujillo embodied selflessness and demonstrated it daily. At every roadblock, she found a way to move forward. She drew upon her many years in the classroom to be a champion for educators and an advocate for students. It is hard to imagine how to move forward without her leadership. But that’s what Dr. Trujillo would want us to do. One of her many talents was surrounding herself with capable people who kept students’ interests first, and that will be her legacy in this district.” 

LCPS Board of Education President Ray Jaramillo (LCPS news release): “In my time on the board, there was never a day Dr. Trujillo didn’t show up with a plan for success – even in the toughest of times. She was the architect of a cautious plan that addressed the needs of every student and every educator in our district, and we supported her in her mission.”

About Karen Trujillo (from LCPS):

Karen Trujillo started her teaching career in Las Cruces in 1993 after receiving her bachelor's and master’s degrees in mathematics education from New Mexico State University. After teaching math at Las Cruces High School for two years, she returned to NMSU where she received her Ph.D. in secondary education, mathematics, curriculum and instruction. She taught at Cobre High School in Silver City and was a worked in New Mexico’s bootheel with Western New Mexico University. In 2000, she moved with her family to Truth or Consequences to teach math at Hot Springs High School and work with Mathematically Connected Communities (MC2). In 2004, she returned to Las Cruces to serve as an administrator at Las Cruces Catholic School. In addition, she taught at Alma d’Arte Charter High School and from 2010 to 2018, she worked at NMSU in various capacities, teaching classes, writing grants and conducting research. During that time, she started Educators Rising NM and the Southwest Outreach Academic Research Lab and served as the Interim Dean for Research. Before coming to LCPS, she served as the New Mexico Secretary of Public Education and briefly represented District 5 on the Doña Ana Board of County Commissioners.  



Dr. Karen Trujillo Scholarship Fund Established

From Las Cruces Public Schools

A memorial fund has been established to honor the late Las Cruces Public Schools superintendent, Dr. Karen Trujillo, who died Thursday, Feb. 25. 

The fund will be collected by New Mexico State University. Trujillo’s family plans to create a scholarship fund to support aspiring teachers. 

“Karen was passionate about education,” said her husband, Ben Trujillo, who met with the NMSU Foundation to discuss plans to honor his wife’s memory. “She was especially dedicated to the mission of Educators Rising New Mexico, an organization she founded which cultivates highly skilled educators by guiding young people on the path to becoming teachers.” 

During her tenure at NMSU, Trujillo served as the director of the Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning, where she established Educators Rising. The organization gives students an opportunity to engage in teaching while in high school. Educators Rising began with six schools and today there are more than 40 schools and nearly 1,000 students in the program. 

Trujillo was a proud Aggie, receiving her bachelor's and master’s degrees in mathematics education from New Mexico State University. In 1997, she received her Ph.D. in secondary education, mathematics, curriculum and instruction, also at NMSU.

In lieu of flowers, Trujillo’s husband encourages the community to contribute to the fund through secure online donations at https://advancing.nmsu.edu/givenow. After selecting your donation amount, contributors can choose “other” in the dropdown menu and write-in “In memory of Dr. Karen Trujillo” to ensure contributions are deposited to her fund. Contributions are tax deductible. 

As an alternative to online donations, checks made payable to “In Memory of Dr. Karen Trujillo” can be mailed or dropped off at 1151 Heather Ave., Las Cruces, N.M. 88005. 

For more information, contact Ben Trujillo’s State Farm office at 575-382-3636.

From New Mexico State University

A memorial fund has been established to honor Karen Trujillo, the Las Cruces Public Schools superintendent who passed away last week. Trujillo's family has created a scholarship for aspiring teachers at New Mexico State University.

During her tenure at the university, Trujillo served as the Director of the Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning where she established Educators Rising. The organization gives students an opportunity to engage in teaching while in high school. Educators Rising began with six schools and today there are more than 40 schools and nearly 1,000 students in the program.

Trujillo was a proud Aggie, receiving her bachelor's and master’s degrees in mathematics education from New Mexico State University. In 1997, she received her Ph.D. in secondary education, mathematics, curriculum and instruction, also at NMSU.

In lieu of flowers, Trujillo’s husband encourages the community to contribute to the fund through secure online donations at: http://support.nmsu.edu/give/memorial/trujillo-memorial/

For help navigating the donation site or additional questions, call 575-646-1613. As an alternative to online donations, checks made payable to “In Memory of Dr. Karen Trujillo” may be mailed or dropped off at Dove Hall, Room 212, 1305 N. Horseshoe Drive, Las Cruces, N.M. 88003.