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Tim Martin Memorial Scholarship

Commemorating a Loved One – The Tim Martin Memorial Scholarship

Tim Martin was born in 1961 in the small town of El Rito, New Mexico. Growing up on a ranch with his parents Pat and JoAnn, and his older brother Michael, Tim knew the meaning of hard work.

As a youth, Tim was an active member of 4-H. He was a sports lover who played on the Mesa Vista High School basketball team and found time to tutor other players who struggled academically. After being named co-valedictorian of his graduating class, Tim went on to study at New Mexico State University where he received the Dean’s Award of Excellence from the College of Agriculture and Home Economics for exceptional student achievement.

Tim Martin at work on his family ranch

After graduating from NMSU, Tim returned home to El Rito where he and his brother continued work on the family ranch. He loved the challenges and rewards, whether it was helping a newborn calf nurse for the first time, hearing the bugle of a bull elk on a fall morning while checking on the cattle, or watching a freshly plowed field change into a beautiful crop of hay.

Tim’s dedication to service extended into the local community where he helped many people and touched countless lives. He took great pleasure in assisting a neighbor with a welding project, delivering a calf, or treating a sick horse. As a member of the El Rito Volunteer Fire Department for over 20 years, he was always willing to help his fellow firefighters on an emergency call.

On June 20, 2006, Tim was suddenly admitted into the hospital, where he was told he had stomach cancer. After undergoing surgery, he passed away five days later at the age of 44. Family, friends, and the entire community were stunned by the loss of this kind, giving man.

Tim’s family wanted to commemorate him in a meaningful way. They researched several possibilities for creating a scholarship in his name, but none initially met their requirements. After looking into endowing a scholarship through the LANL Foundation, they found what they were looking for.

Named scholarships have been established to commemorate people with a strong interest in the education of Northern New Mexico students. Groups and individuals entrust the LANL Foundation and its advisory committee with fund management and selection of winners.

“The LANL Foundation gave us a way to honor Tim without a huge burden to us,” said Michael Martin. “Our goals intertwined, it was a perfect fit.”

The Tim Martin Memorial Scholarship was started by Tim’s brother Michael and mother JoAnn to honor his memory.

The LANL Foundation actively recruits students, raises and manages funds, and conducts an impartial selection process to determine scholarship recipients based on the parameters set by the Martin family.

“Tim was very community minded,” JoAnn Martin added, “so part of the scholarship criteria is an active interest in community service.”

Through this scholarship, Tim continues to help others while his family and friends keep his memory alive. One-time awards of $1000 are given each year to Mesa Vista High School
 seniors who exemplify Tim’s spirit of community service and academic performance. Through private contributions, the Tim Martin Memorial Fund has grown. From 2008 when the first Tim Martin Scholarships were awarded through 2018, 28 scholars have received support on their journey of higher learning toward meaningful careers. Several Tim Martin Scholars have also recevied four-year scholarships from the broader Los Alamos Employees’ Scholarhsip Fund and some have worked at LANL in the internship program.

A Renewed Commitment

Michael and friends and family continue to make contributions to their scholarship fund in honor of Tim and also to carry on JoAnn’s vision of community support after she passed away in 2017. Upon hearing of the LANL Foundation’s Planned Giving initiative, Michael also generously named the Foundation as a life insurance beneficiary. This legacy gift will allow him to make an impact on education in Northern New Mexico for generations to come.

2016 Tim Martin Memorial Scholarship winners (left to right) Victoria Coronado, Kylie Gallegos, Victoria Lovato, and John-Paul Howard.

Create a Scholarship or Make a Legacy Gift to Honor a Loved One

For information about endowing a scholarship that commemorates a loved one or supports specific career directions and student qualifications, contact Tony Fox, Vice President of Advancement and Scholarships at or 505-7563-8890 x116.

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