All posts by Myah Wilmarth

MALDEF President Thomas Saenz, Crime’s Effect On Youth, Our Land

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This week, New Mexico in Focus interviews Thomas Saenz, the national president of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF). Saenz has been a key figure in the Martínez/Yazzie v. State of New Mexico lawsuit, the case that is forcing the state to improve the education it provides for certain groups of students. Recently, both groups of plaintiffs asked the court to set more strict deadlines for the state to prove it’s making progress. Correspondent Russell Contreras speaks with Saenz about what’s ahead in the case.

New Mexico in Focus takes a hard look at crime’s effect on young people with Albuquerque filmmaker John Acosta, whose documentary “Growing Up in the Real Breaking Bad” aims to raise awareness about youth violence. NMiF host Gene Grant interviews Acosta, who is joined by a group of young activists who say policymakers need to listen and try a different approach to addressing the problem.

In a repeat showing of Our Land from August, correspondent Laura Paskus travels to the Gila National Forest for an in-depth report on the battle over the Gila River. In the intervening months there have been new updates on the project, and NMiF host Gene Grant sits down with Paskus to discuss these developments.

Host: Gene Grant

Russell Contreras
Laura Paskus

John Acosta, Filmmaker, “Growing Up in the Real Breaking Bad”
Adrian Baca, Youth Organizer
Janelle Astorga Ramos, Youth Organizer
Xiuhtecuhtli Soto, Youth Organizer
Thomas Saenz, MALDEF national president

Field Guests:
Pete Domenici, Jr., attorney, New Mexico Central Arizona Project Entity
Norman Gaume, retired director, New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission
Todd Schulke, co-founder, Center for Biological Diversity

Line Panelists:
No Line this week.

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, Greg Jackson, The Line

Balloon Fiesta Security 3

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta takes flight in just over a week. The event is one of the highlights of the year and a huge tourism draw for the state. But this year, the Fiesta will include some new additions like undercover officers and metal detectors. Host Gene Grant went live on Facebook this week with Balloon Fiesta officials to talk about the changes and what spectators need to know. We’ll share some of the key takeaways, and then The Line opinion panelists weigh in on what it will take for the increased security efforts to be a success.

Correspondent Russell Contreras sits down with one of the key figures in New Mexico’s rise to prominence in the mixed martial arts (MMA) world: Greg Jackson. One of the founders of The Jackson Wink Academy, Jackson has helped train the likes of title winners Jon “Bones” Jones and Holly Holm. The two talk about why MMA is so popular in our state, as well as how Jackson is working to improve his community outside the octagon.

Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel also spend time discussing a new report that outlines the true extent of the state’s behavioral health crisis, and what state leaders are doing to bridge the gap between patients and providers. They also offer insight on the impact to New Mexico’s congressional delegation now that the U.S. House of Representatives has decided to open an impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

Host: Gene Grant   

Russell Contreras

Greg Jackson, mixed martial arts trainer, Jackson Wink MMA Training Academy
Allen Tetreault, public safety director, Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
Tom Garrity, The Garrity Group, Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Line Panelists:
Merritt Allen, Vox Optima
Michael Bird, Public Health Consultant
Jeffrey Candelaria, Konnection Now & KKOB radio
Laura Sanchez-Rivét, Affirm