Llano's Mary Mascareñas honored for years of volunteer service to Taos County

By Cody Hooks
chooks@taosnews.com
Posted 3/14/19

Mascareñas was honored March 5 for 20 years of "unselfish contribution and commitment" to the people of Taos County through her involvement on the Taos County Planning Commission. She finished her last term on the five-person board in December.

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Llano's Mary Mascareñas honored for years of volunteer service to Taos County

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There's nothing glamorous about making the trudge from Llano in the Peñasco Valley to the county building in Taos for a planning commission meeting that could last for hours. Yet for 20 years, that's exactly what Mary Mascareñas did.

Mascareñas was honored March 5 for 20 years of "unselfish contribution and commitment" to the people of Taos County through her involvement on the Taos County Planning Commission. She finished her last term on the five-person board in December.

"I've continued to serve because I love my community, I love Taos County and love the people," she said.

"I'm going to miss you very much," said Taos County Commissioner Jim Fambro, who recalled working with Mascareñas during his time with the Taos Fire Department.

Her other service includes more than 25 years as an acequia commissioner in Llano, and work in the Taos County Democratic Party, the Peñasco fiestas and the Northern Río Grande National Heritage Area. She is also a member of the Peñasco school board and in 2018 was named by the New Mexico School Boards Association as "board member of the year."

Mascareñas has stepped in to fill so many volunteer roles, especially in the southern reaches of Taos County, that she's earned the title of unofficial "mayor of Peñasco."

She credited her parents and the Catholic nuns who taught her in school as the source of her dedication to community service.

Mascareñas, who is 80, hopes the younger generations will now answer the call for lifelong volunteerism.

"We need our young people to care for the community, to give of themselves and serve in whatever capacity they can because there's always a need for volunteers," she said. "Continue ahead with faith, strength, determination and compassion."

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