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Martinez Nominates Final UNM Regent

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Governor Susana Martinez on Friday nominated Suzanne Quillen, of Las Cruces, to be the next University of New Mexico regent.

Quillen, if confirmed by the state Senate, would replace regent Carolyn Abeita, whose term expired.

Abeita has said she plans on serving until her replacement  is confirmed by the Senate.

Quillen is the CEO of Advanced Care Hospital of Southern New Mexico, a long-term, acute care hospital in Las Cruces.

Quillen also worked for UNM in the past as a nurse educator, according to a news release from the governor’s office.

She has several degrees from the University of Albuquerque, which closed in 1986, the University of Phoenix and New Mexico State University. She also has a pediatric nurse practitioner certification from the University of Colorado.

Quillen is also the director of marketing and business development at Mountain View Regional Medical Center and serves on the boards of the Bridge of Southern New Mexico, La Casa Women’s Shelter and the Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce.

UNM will have three new regents this year. Student regent nominee Heidi Overton, a medical student, was picked to replace Jake Wellman, whose term expired. Former Republican state representative Conrad James, of Albuquerque, will replace Don Chalmers, whose resigned soon after his term expired, opting to leave the board before his replacement was chosen. That means that James can begin serving on the regents before the Senate confirms him.

Martinez also nominated regents for other state schools.

Dan Salzwedel, of Cedar Crest, was picked to serve on the Western New Mexico University regents. Hobbs resident Debra Hicks was nominated for the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology regents and Riggs, of Roswell, was nominated for the New Mexico Military Institute regents.