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 Address: 505 S. Main Street, Ste. 249, Las Cruces, NM 88001

Board Member Biographies and Contact Information


Patrick Nolan, Member

District 1  |  Term started in 2023

Patrick Nolan’s Biography

Patrick was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. His mother was a high school teacher in Detroit Public Schools and his father worked in the auto industry. He graduated from the University of Detroit Mercy with a degree in History.

Patrick currently serves as a member of the Las Cruces Public Schools Board of Education for District 1. He is the father to an LCPS student, a freshman at Las Cruces High School.

Patrick writes, “The impact our schools have both on students and families is an important one. It’s where we build the critical building blocks that will help us lead a fulfilling life. I want to be able to support these institutions any way I can, and serving as school board member is certainly one way I can support our public schools.”

Patrick Nolan has been involved with the Green Chamber since he first joined as Executive Director of the Friends of Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks in February of 2018. The Friends of Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks is a nonprofit dedicated to protecting and conserving public lands. The focus is building connection between public lands and community youth through the Moving Montañas initiative.

Prior to his time with the nonprofit, he served as the Union Representative for the American Federation of Teachers New Mexico. The position took him all over the state, and included extensive work within LCPS. In this position, he was close to many educational issues that had an impact on schools from funding to policy discussions.

Photo of Vice President Carol Cooper.

Carol Cooper, Member

District 5  |  Elected in 2019 (Term ends in 2023)


Carol Cooper's Biography

Carol Cooper was born and grew up in Roswell, NM. Her father, Clyde Long, was in the U. S. Air Force, so while she attended elementary school and high school in Roswell, she was also a student (grades 8-10) at Ramey High School in Puerto Rico. She graduated from Roswell High School and began her college education at NMSU in the fall of 1964.

Marriage to Gary Thurm and the births of their two sons, Gary Jr. and Evan Thurm, postponed completion of her college education. Anticipating divorce in 1979, she returned to NMSU and graduated in the spring of 1982 with a Bachelor of Accountancy degree. Within a few months she began her career in public accounting.

In 2000, she married Tom Cooper, CPA and cattle rancher, and that meant a second career for Carol as well! Carol and Tom lived and worked together, rarely separated until Tom’s passing in 2012. Carol is no longer ranching but continues to serve her accounting clients.

Carol is an active member of Mission Lutheran Church and regards teaching Sunday School as a very special joy in her life. She is also a member of Republican Women of the Mesilla Valley and previously served as the club’s president. When schedules permit, Carol travels to visit her sons and their families. Gary, a civil engineer in Minden, Nevada, and Evan, a personnel trainer and recruiter in Portland, Oregon.

Carol writes, “l am often asked why I wish to serve as a school board member, and I think it is important everyone involved with me know the answer to that question. Frankly, I hope our community shares my desire: I desire that all the people who share our planet know the resources our Creator has provided us (individually and collectively) and learn how to use them-in order that we may all lead full, productive, peaceable lives. I believe that requires the knowledge of the generations be shared with the generations that follow-not always having to “reinvent the wheel”. Further, I think that happens best when, in concert with professional educators, we (mothers, fathers, extended family, friends, neighbors…) are all committed to being connected to the students in our lives, all of us teaching and learning. I am here to encourage, facilitate effective learning however, whenever I can.”

Photo of Secretary Teresa Tenorio.

Teresa Tenorio, President

District 4   |  Elected in 2019 (Term ends in 2023)

Contact: (575) 652-4500 or cell: (505) 453-7450



Teresa Tenorio's Biography

Teresa Tenorio was elected on November 5, 2019 and began her four-year term on January 1, 2020. She ran for school board to offer Las Cruces Public Schools her perspective as a parent of school-aged children, her courage as an education activist, and her conscience to serve ethically and responsibly. 

Teresa grew up in the town of Santa Rosa, New Mexico where she and her three siblings attended public school, K-12. Her parents, now-retired public school teachers, were wonderful role models in the community. She was surrounded by educators, 12 in her family among three generations. Ms. Tenorio graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in University Studies from the University of New Mexico, with an interdisciplinary focus on Health & Society. She worked on research and intervention projects at the UNM Health Science Center and the University of Texas School of Public Health pertaining to health promotion and disease prevention among underserved and at-risk populations.

Ms. Tenorio and her spouse, Manuel Sanchez, have called Las Cruces “home” since 2011. Their three daughters attend East Picacho Elementary. Teresa has coached a handful of Las Cruces City Recreation Youth basketball teams and also teaches youth catechism. For several years, she led LC Moms on the Move, a local wellness group for expecting women and mothers with young children. Prior to starting her family, Teresa worked directly with youth and community for over 10 years on various education, health, and leadership initiatives. She currently serves on the NM Public Education Department Student Success Task Force.

Since 2015, Teresa has been strongly involved in efforts locally and statewide to reclaim public education from corporate reform malpractices. Her advocacy substantially expanded her network of stakeholders in education. These stakeholder interactions and intensive research affirmed her values in relevant and inclusive learning, evidence-based practices, increased teacher autonomy, the whole child approach, community engagement, and informed decision-making via local control.

“I am honored to serve on the board. I encourage you to reach out to me and the other board members with your concerns, questions, and yes, even praises related to LCPS, so that we can better guide and support the district’s efforts.”

Member Pamela Cort District 2

Pamela Cort, Vice President

District 2   |  Elected in 2022 (Term ends in 2026)

Pamela Cort grew up in Santa Fe, NM but has been a resident of Las Cruces for the last 30 years. Her mother was born and raised in Las Cruces so her love of the city has been with her all her life. Pamela and her husband, Robert, raised their two children in Las Cruces where they attended and graduated from Las Cruces Public Schools. Pamela taught French at Las Cruces High School for 26 years after beginning her teaching career in the Albuquerque Public Schools. Pamela earned her BA in French from Washington State University, her MA in Curriculum and Instruction from New Mexico State University, and her Ed.S in Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment from Walden University.

Pamela’s love of education and passion for teaching began when she was a child, growing up immersed in the education system. Her grandmother and mother were elementary school teachers, her grandfather was a high school band director, and her father was a college professor. Pamela is most proud of the relationships she formed while in the classroom and the connections she has made with her students. Although Pamela retired in May 2019, she has continued her education work through involvement with professional teacher organizations and creating professional development opportunities for educators through NEA-NM EL3.

During her time as a high school French teacher, she worked tirelessly for her students in the classroom and school governance. The students were the reason she went to work every day and stayed an educator for 31 exhilarating years. In 2012, she had the honor of being selected as the Las Cruces District Teacher of the Year, and became the New Mexico Teacher of the Year in 2013. Her experiences as Teacher of the Year have allowed her to gain a more expansive national view of education and a greater appreciation of how state and district policies directly affect the student population. As a language educator, Pamela promoted cultural and linguistic diversity in her teaching, prompting her English Learners to become leaders in the classroom. She completed her Ed.S degree in 2018, with the bulk of the work concentrated on Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Teaching (CLRT). Pamela’s educator network spreads across the world due to her membership in multiple professional language teacher organizations and her work with the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. She has a vast educational reference system because she is in constant contact with these associations. There will be many challenges facing education in the coming years, and Pamela’s extensive background will provide the first-hand experience necessary to meet these issues head-on.

Secretary Robert Wofford

Robert Wofford, Secretary

District 3  |  Elected in 2022 (Term ends in 2026)

Robert Wofford was born in Las Cruces and was fortunate to attend public schools: Valley View Elementary, Zia Middle School, and Las Cruces High School.  His family put their roots down in this community when his grandparents moved here during the 1930’s depression, first homesteading on the west mesa near the Corralitos Ranch, then moving into Las Cruces. 
Bob taught English at Las Cruces High School from 1983 until his retirement in 2017.  He was also an Advanced Education Services gifted and talented facilitator, and he taught part time in the English Department at New Mexico State University early in his career.

Bob has a Master of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education from NMSU.  While at Las Cruces High, he sponsored the Amnesty International Club for over thirty years, and the Gay Straight Alliance for the last several years of his teaching. He is the first openly LGBTQ+ member of the Las Cruces School Board.  He served on numerous school, NEA-LC, and LCPS district committees over the years, was department head of English, and served as Test Supervisor for the SAT and ACT college entrance exams at LCHS.  Bob also received a year-long Fulbright Teaching Exchange to teach English and drama at E.L. Crossley Secondary School in Ontario, Canada.

Working with teachers to improve the quality of instruction is one of Bob’s passions, and to that end, he has consulted for the Advanced Placement Program of The College Board in AP English Literature since 2004, conducting workshops and summer institutes to teach AP teachers how to teach AP English Literature.  He has served on their Consultant Advisory Panel since 2016, and was an AP/ETS Reader for the AP English Literature exam, scoring essays for the annual AP test.  Bob also works part-time for the National Math and Science Initiative as an AP English Literature professional development coach, sharing his expertise in teaching Advanced Placement English.

Bob’s service on the school board springs from his belief that the relationship educators build in the classroom ultimately enables students to learn and to grow, so when we support our educators and education support staff, we create opportunities for student success.  Critical to that success is parent and community involvement, and Bob believes that our work together as a community—parents and guardians, individual volunteers, and support agencies—enables students to thrive.