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It was an all-star cast Tuesday morning, Oct. 5, as leaders from the City of Las Cruces and Las Cruces Public Schools joined Tresco Inc. administrators and clients for a breakfast at New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum to celebrate National Disability Employment Month, which continues through the end of October.
The city was represented by Assistant City Manager Eric Enriquez, City Councilor Tessa Abeyta-Stuve and Economic Development Coordinator Cilicia Villegas. Attending the breakfast from LCPS were Superintendent Ralph Ramos, Board of Education members Maria Flores and Pamela Cort and Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Hermila Ortega. Also attending were Mesilla Valley Economic Development Alliance (MVEDA) President and CEO Davin Lopez, American Document Services of Las Cruces owner Rick Jackson, Home Instead owner Buffy Johnson, HUB International Executive Producer Fred Trafton, Leo Lovett of US Bank and Rebecca Rodriguez of Yearout Service, LLC.
Tresco leadership in attendance were President and CEO Chris Boston, Tresco Works Director Luis Rios, Assistant Director of Tresco Works Operations Andy Taylor, COO Sylvia Washington, Director of Community Support Services Analisa Martinez, CFO Bill Harty, Tresco Works Warehouse Manager Pete Jimenez and Community Engagement Manager Stacie Allen and Tresco board member Bill Bornhauser, along with Tresco employees Lydia Hernandez and Les Clary.
Tresco partners with federal, state and local employers to provide jobs to more than 230 full- and part-time individuals with a variety of disabilities.
Clary, for example, is a repair technician working for the New Mexico Department of Transportation doing maintenance, repair and upkeep on nine highway rest areas. He has a knee injury sustained during his U.S. military service.
Working for Tresco means “finding a job that allows you self-respect,” Clarey said at the Oct. 5 breakfast. “I really care about what I do,” he said. “You never met people so glad to have a job,” he said of the other Tresco employees he works with.
“They are some of the happiest people I’ve ever met. They don’t get handouts,” Clarey said. “They earn every penny of it.”
Jackson said he learned about Tresco while working at White Sands Missile Range.
“When I started my business (American Document Services), that’s the first place I went,” he said. “It’s the best experience I’ve ever had. You talk about somebody dedicated,” Jackson said about his Tresco employees.
Boston also recognized Lydia Hernandez at the breakfast. Hernandez is lead custodian at the U.S. District Court building in Las Cruces. She represented Tresco as one of 50 self-advocates selected from across the country to participate in the annual national SourceAmerica Grassroots Advocacy Conference in April.
Ramos said LCPS is looking forward to working with Tresco in a pilot apprenticeship program that was scheduled to begin in 2020 but was interrupted by the pandemic.
When hiring, Boston encouraged local employers to “think of people with disabilities too. We won’t disappoint,” he said.