Guv reappoints Stinnett regent

Staff and Wire Reports

SANTA FE — A Portales man was reappointed to the Eastern New Mexico University board of regents, making him one of several state appointments announced Friday by Gov. Bill Richardson.

Marshall Stinnett of Portales, vice president of Southern Newspapers, was reappointed to a six-year term on the Eastern New Mexico University board of regents. Stinnett is a Portales native and former publisher of the Portales News-Tribune. He is active in the Republican party and a former Roosevelt County Republican party chairman.

Paul Blanchard of Albuquerque was named Friday by Gov. Bill Richardson to the state Investment Council, which is responsible for investments of New Mexico’s permanent funds.

Blanchard, a friend of the governor who contributed $120,000 to Richardson’s re-election campaign, is an Albuquerque developer and businessman. He is chairman and chief executive officer of the Downs at Albuquerque, a casino and horse racing track.

Blanchard has been serving on the state Board of Finance, but his term expires at the end of the month,
Blanchard contributed $115,000 to Richardson’s gubernatorial campaign in October and November, and $5,000 in 2005.

Blanchard, who is an independent unaffiliated with a political party, will serve a five-year term on the Investment Council, replacing Ike Kalangis of Albuquerque, whose term ends this month.

The nine-member Investment Council sets policies for the investment of the land grand and severance tax permanent funds, which are valued at about $14 billion. Among its duties, the council decides whether to approve interest-free loans for film productions in the state. The state investment officer and his staff handle day-to-day investment operations and carry out the council’s policies.

Succeeding Blanchard on the Board of Finance is John Loehr, an outgoing member of the board of regents at New Mexico Highlands University. Loehr, a Democrat, was named to a two-year term on the Board of Finance, which oversees state finances including investments by the state treasurer. The board also can make emergency grants and loans to governmental agencies.

Isleta Pueblo Gov. Robert Benavides was named by Richardson to replace Loehr as a Highlands University regent. Benavides is a Republican.

Other appointments announced Friday by Richardson:

—Carlsbad Mayor Bob Forrest and John Henderson III of Albuquerque, both Republicans, to six-year terms on the New Mexico Military Institute board of regents. Forrest succeeds Bruce Ritter and Henderson, who is a real estate agent, replaces Stephen Elliott. The terms of Ritter and Elliott expire at the end of the month.