The Core Program brings together a group of influential leaders from around the state for an educational and inspirational experience that is unlike any other organization.


Leadership New Mexico’s Core Program is ten-months in duration and its twenty first class begins in September. Core Program sessions are designed to address current issues facing the state. Each program session features speakers that are acknowledged leaders in their specific fields, while program participants actively engage in discussion and debate. The process offers an opportunity for inquiry, analysis and development of solutions to the most pressing issues facing our communities and state.

Core Program sessions are held in communities all over the state in order to expose participants to the different regions of New Mexico and the local issues important to each region. In addition, program participants experience the unique culture of each community, weaving for themselves a broad-based and comprehensive understanding of the challenges facing the state with many cultures and geographic diversity.

Each program year includes a two-day retreat and orientation, followed by educational sessions on topics such as:

  • Health and Human Services
  • Economic Development
  • Education
  • Environment and Natural Resources
  • Government, Crime and Justice and Leadership

The Core Program is open to all citizens of the state. Leadership New Mexico selects a class each year of 40-45 leaders who represent a cross-section of the various geographic regions of the state from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Special consideration is given to ensure diversity of race, gender and occupational background. Participants are selected using the following criteria:

  • Commitment, motivation, and interest in serving New Mexico.
  • History and demonstrated voluntary leadership in community activities.
  • Record of accomplishments within his or her company or organization.
  • Interest in seeking future key volunteer and/or appointed leadership roles.
  • An occupational commitment to remain in the state.
  • Commitment to play a personal role in helping to shape New Mexico´s future.

Tuition for the Core Program is $3,500 and covers all program costs, transportation during sessions, and meals. Participants are responsible for their own transportation to the session locations and hotel accommodations. A limited number of scholarships are available for those requiring financial assistance. A request for scholarship assistance does not affect selection into the program.

2016 / 2017
Core Program Session Dates

September 8 – 10, 2016
Thursday 2:00 p.m. to Saturday 4:00 p.m.
Orientation & Retreat – Santa Fe

November 3 – 5, 2016
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Health & Human Services – Las Vegas

January 5 – 7, 2017
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Economic Development – Las Cruces

March 30 – April 1, 2017
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Education – Hobbs

May 18 – 20, 2017
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Environment & Natural Resources – Farmington

June 7 – 9, 2017
Wednesday 5:30 p.m. to Friday 9:00 p.m.
Government, Crime and Justice, Leadership – Taos

2017 / 2018
Core Program Session Dates

September 7 – 9, 2017
Thursday 2:00 p.m. to Saturday 4:00 p.m.
Orientation & Retreat – Santa Fe

November 2 – 4, 2017
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Health & Human Services – Las Vegas

January 4 – 6, 2018
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Economic Development – Las Cruces

March 1 – 3, 2018
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Education – Hobbs

May 17 – 19, 2018
Thursday 5:30 p.m. to Saturday 12:00 noon
Environment & Natural Resources – Farmington

June 6 – 8, 2018
Wednesday 5:30 p.m. to Friday 9:00 p.m.
Government, Crime and Justice, Leadership – Taos

The Core Program session in September will run Thursday afternoon and all day Friday and Saturday. The Core Program session in June will run Wednesday evening and all day Thursday and Friday, with graduation held Friday evening. All other Core Program sessions begin Thursday evening (5:30 p.m.) with a reception with the local Chamber Board of Directors, City Council, County Commission, Community Business Owners and local leadership program participants and graduates. The class session will end Saturday at 12:00 noon.

To nominate someone from your community or company for the Core Program, contact Leadership New Mexico at 505-398-1500.

If you would like to apply, please download an application and send it to leader@leadershipnm.org.

Deadline for applications is March 15.
Download a Core Program Application.