SSW Advisory Board

Next Meeting

General Function of the Advisory Board

The function of the members of the School of Social Work Advisory Board are to advise and make recommendations to the School of Social Work with respect to matters within the areas of their experience and expertise. The Advisory Board provides support and input to the School on its programs.


The objectives of the School of Social Work Advisory Board include:

  1. To increase and formalize the contribution of social work students, practitioners, alumni, social service administrators, community leaders, ethnic groups and consumers to the ongoing assessment, and renewal of the MSW and BSW programs.
  2. To enable members of the Advisory Board to effectively interpret and to promote the mission and goals of the School of Social Work to the community and other audiences.
  3. To assist and engage in the support of the School of Social Work and its programs.

Members of the Board

Marco Cervantes is a licensed social worker and an alumnus of the MSW program at New Mexico State University. He is employed at the Dona Ana/Hill Ben Archer Health Center located just outside of Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Representative Doreen Gallegos is a Democrat from the New Mexico 52nd District. After graduating from New Mexico State University with an undergraduate and master’s degree in Social Work, she worked with youth support agencies and in private practice, and for the past 15 years has been the Executive Director of Mesilla Valley CASA, a local nonprofit that advocates for abused and neglected children.

Kasandra Gandara received her BSW and MSW degrees from New Mexico State University. She currently serves as the councilwoman for the City of Las Cruces, District 1.  Ms. Gandara retired as the Regional Manager for CYFD’s Protective Services Division, supervising and representing the 9 southernmost counties in the state.

Gary R. Lowe, MSW, Ph.D retired in July 2007 after a professional career of 37 years in higher education, primarily in the field of social work as well as related international activities. Currently he serves as the Global Mentoring Coordinator of AGGIES GO GLOBAL at New Mexico State University.

Jolene Martinez is currently a staff member at Lynn Middle School in Las Cruces.  She received her BSW and MSW degrees from New Mexico State University.

Suzan Martinez de Gonzales serves as the Chief Executive Officer of La Clinica de Familia in Las Cruces.

Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino is Democratic member of the New Mexico Senate. Ortiz y Pino joined the New Mexico State Senate in 2005. He has served in that position since, representing the 12th district. Ortiz y Pino is a Social Worker. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of New Mexico and his master’s degree from Tulane University.