West Sacramento, Calif. — The PNM Fund, a division of the PNM Resources Foundation has awarded a $10,000 grant to Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC). The New Century of Service Centennial Grant award will support RCAC’s Building Rural Economies (BRE)/Entrepreneurial Leadership Program in New Mexico’s Cochiti Pueblo.

RCAC, through its BRE initiative, will partner with the Pueblo de Cochiti Housing Authority (PdCHA), which will serve as the local BRE sponsor organization. BRE is a unique endeavor to build the capacity of local community organizations and Tribes to identify and carry out comprehensive community economic development activities, access resources, and train and support local entrepreneurs.

The grant will support specific outcomes, including trained leaders who will work together to address economic goals. The leaders will focus on a new Compressed Earth Block development business dedicated to housing and commercial building construction, as well as up to three new viable small businesses that local entrepreneurs will implement. Business leaders will also expand retail outlets for Pueblo de Cochiti’s artisans. Although the Cochiti Tribe is renowned for its artisanal pottery, economic opportunities and jobs on the Reservation are scarce, and there is a lack of affordable housing.

“We are pleased to receive this grant award and for PNM Resources Foundation’s support for Tribal communities,” said Stan Keasling, RCAC Chief Executive Officer. “The BRE program will encourage innovation and economic development opportunities in New Mexico’s Cochiti Pueblo.”

According to Kathleen Larese, executive director of PNM Resources Foundation, the competition for funding was fierce.

“Our board of trustees and employees reviewed applications from 234 organizations throughout New Mexico,” she said. “In total, we were able to award 62 grants. The PNM Resources Foundation is proud to support extraordinary organizations like (RCAC) in New Mexico.”

Founded in 1978, RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and the Pacific islands. RCAC provides a broad range of community and economic development services and lending to support local efforts. To find out more about RCAC visit www.rcac.org.

Contact: Julia Helmreich
Director, Communications, Development & Events
(916) 447-9832 ext. 1008