A renewing community
It has been a year since I started working in Valencia County, and I still get inspired by the collective dedication to better the community and lead the way for renewable energy.
While major cities loudly announce their intentions of getting some percentage from renewables, our local businesses have been meeting most or all of their energy needs for a decade.
While large campuses assert their unavoidable need to rely on natural gas, our campus installed solar charging tables, adding to the rooftop solar panels that will provide more than half the campus energy needs within the next year.
While people everywhere squabble over the merits of perceived radical ideas, Valencia County has long been poised to take advantage of our state’s world class resources in a manner that empowers its residents.
Over the last decade, the cost of solar and wind energy has dropped to the point where utility-scale operations are cheaper than every type of fossil fuel generation.
Across the nation, people are realizing that taking action to mitigate climate change is not only feasible — it’s the best option.
While we may have had significant statewide wins recently, it’s important to remember the community efforts that built the foundation to make this possible. Valencia County should continue leading the way with the upwards renewable energy trend and keep inspiring the rest of the state to follow along.
A friend in need
A few weeks ago, an old friend of mine reached out and told me about a fundraiser for her daughter, Beth. It seems that on June 7, while returning from a summer trip, her daughter, Beth, and her two friends were in a car accident.
They were in Las Vegas, Nev., about to return home from a summer vacation when their car was completely destroyed by a fugitive from the police in Nevada. I’ve known Beth’s mom, Valerie, for a number of years and she has always been a hard worker and just recently had overcome her own illness only to find that her oldest daughter was now going to face a challenge of a lifetime. You see, Beth was in the back seat of the car and the other vehicle basically crushed her inside of it.
The Las Vegas Fire Department had to deploy the jaws of life to help her escape. When she was evaluated, they discovered that she had injured both her spine and her neck. Uncertainty set in for everyone as to if Beth was ever going to be able to even walk or have a normal functioning life again.
Beth has been working very hard to find a way back to her normal. It hasn’t been easy, especially since Beth was working two jobs and trying to finish her degree in business at the University of New Mexico.
I was thankful to see that one of her employers, Colin Moore, general manager of Denny’s in Los Lunas, step up and offer to host a spaghetti dinner for these employees. Colin knew that Beth’s work ethic was such that if she could come back to work she would, but because her injuries are so severe that she’s going to have to rehabilitate herself for the next year.
Colin and the entire staff at Denny’s pulled together to raise money for these employees and their medical expenses. I was moved by this gesture. We hear so many times how executives often forget their employees or that they don’t care about their workforce. Well some do and Colin definitely proved that to me.
So next time you’re in Denny’s in Los Lunas, thank Colin for stepping up for his staff, thank the staff for checking in on these young people whose lives have been turned upside down, and if you’d like to help out Beth and her family, you can visit her gofundme page at Beth Always Dreamed Big (gofundme.com/f/beth-always-dreamed-big) and read more about her story.
Thanks again, Colin and the whole crew at Denny’s, for coming together for these great young people.
Sisto A. Abeyta