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Governor Susana Martinez Proposes Two High-Tech Research and Development Initiatives

Press Release

Location: Albuquerque, NM

Today, Governor Susana Martinez announced two high-tech research and development initiatives aimed at recruiting top faculty at our higher education institutions and funding innovation projects from researchers at our labs and universities that can contribute to economic growth.

―Building a stronger pipeline of innovation in our state is key to growing our economy and
establishing New Mexico as a high-tech leader, Governor Martinez said today at the University of New Mexico.

Governor Martinez's proposals include reforming the Higher Education Endowment fund and appropriating $7.5 million to allow New Mexico's colleges and universities to compete for endowed chairs, in order to attract some of the nation's top professors, scientists, and researchers to their schools. In critical areas like science, engineering, mathematics, and health, these top flight professors and researchers will be able to attract and train highly motivated students to become part of New Mexico's high-tech workforce, or to become innovators looking to launch companies around important new research, products, and ideas.

Endowment grants would be made on a competitive basis, and better targeted toward key economic sectors and priorities. All projects would continue to require a university or college to match the state award with a 50 percent match in private funds."Governor Martinez's leadership on this proposed legislation to connect public dollars to private funds shows an inspired commitment to ensuring that our colleges and universities continue to compete for the nation's top faculty members, who in turn will help train the workforce our state needs to succeed," said University of New Mexico President Robert Frank.

While at New Mexico Tech in Socorro today, Governor Martinez will announce a second proposal to activate the Technology Research Collaborative (TRC), signed into law last year, that allows teams of researchers to compete for funding to support the development and commercialization of innovative ideas and products -- so that they can be brought to market in our state. The Governor is asking for a $2 million appropriation to the TRC, which requires that each project it reviews and funds be a collaboration between a national laboratory and a research university in our state.

―Universities have a very important role in economic development. The Technology Research Collaborative is an extremely important tool to drive economic advances in New Mexico, New Mexico Tech President Dr. Daniel Lopez said. ―Governor Martinez should be commended for her efforts to advance the creation of jobs and economic development in our state.

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