About the First Lady

12/14/2013: Kathy Carruthers (NMSU Photo)

Kathy Carruthers has a commitment to education and academic excellence that was most clearly seen in her involvement with literacy initiatives over the years. In 1987, while she juggled the many duties of First Lady of the State of New Mexico, she identified literacy as the project she most wanted to work on and co-founded the New Mexico Coalition for Literacy (NMCL), which continues their work to this day.  The National American Optometric Association recognized her commitment and work with their national award.  She was the keynote speaker at the national SER Jobs for Progress Conference and received two national awards including the President’s Award from SER for her work with literacy in New Mexico.

She has served on the Memorial Medical Center Hospital Auxiliary, local Girl Scout and Camp Fire Girls boards, the New Mexico Endowment for the Humanities board and the Las Cruces Country Club board.  She also founded the New Mexico Mansion Foundation in 1987 to maintain and improve the New Mexico Governor’s Residence. The Foundation again, continues their work today.

Among her many accomplishments are recognition as the honorary commander of the New Mexico National Guard Air Force at Kirtland Air Base (the TACOs) and the New Mexico delegate to the JCOC Department of Defense program.  She was also the first woman invited to participate in Kansas Governor Tom Hayden’s One Shot Turkey Hunt in 1989.  She won the event in record time.

Kathy enjoys spending time with her family, reading and traveling.  Kathy and Garrey have been married for 55 years. They have three children and six grandchildren.