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Domenici conference set to begin Sept. 16

A range of tough policy questions will be on the agenda at this year’s Domenici conference, including the nation’s aging infrastructure, U.S. energy independence, regional economic development and Middle East policy.

Former U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M.


In its eighth year, the 2015 Domenici Public Policy Conference will be held Sept. 16 and 17 at the Las Cruces Convention Center. The conference named for former U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici is hosted by New Mexico State University’s Domenici Institute.

It opens on a theme plaguing communities across New Mexico and the country: outdated infrastructure. Speakers include U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters and Andrew Herrmann, former president of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Former North Carolina Gov. Jim Hunt’s keynote speech will center on the role of education in economic development.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters


Andrew Herrmann


Dana Christensen


“The caliber of this year’s event is a testament to Sen. Domenici’s active involvement in the conference’s planning,” said NMSU President and former New Mexico Gov. Garrey Carruthers. “Topics such as economic development, the nation’s aging infrastructure and our focus on energy independence are important to people not just around our region, but across the country.”

On Thursday, Sept. 17, talks on regional economic development, including an address by Gov. Susana Martinez, will dovetail into a conversation about U.S. energy independence and energy in the Americas.

Gov. Susana Martinez


Former North Carolina Gov. Jim Hunt


Former Ambassador Robert Ford


Domenici will introduce the topic, and an address by Dana Christensen, deputy director of science and technology at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, will follow.

Former U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford, who served in the war-divided country from 2010 to 2014, will speak about Middle East policy.

“We’re excited to host such an outstanding program for 2015,” Carruthers said.

Conference registration costs $50 for members of the public, as well as NMSU faculty and staff. All university students may attend for free.

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