Las Cruces nonprofit thanks community for continuing support


Human Systems Research, Inc. (HSR) expresses its deep gratitude to those who are continuing to support HSR, an archaeological research nonprofit organization founded in February 1972 and based in Las Cruces.

In March, HSR was forced to postpone its sold-out ninth annual Buffalo Roast fundraiser due to the first round of statewide health and safety restrictions stemming from the pandemic.

With public gatherings still severely limited, the HSR board of directors decided to cancel both the dinner and the associated lecture -- a very significant decision since this premier local event has been our only annual fundraising activity. Since 2012, funds raised through sponsorships, ticket sales and our silent auction have enabled HSR to continue with its mission of archaeological research, cultural preservation and education pertinent to southwestern archaeology and anthropology.

Like many local nonprofits, HSR has been buffeted by the effects of the oil and gas industry’s collapse on New Mexico’s economy and by work restrictions related to the pandemic. In March, environmental projects were shelved indefinitely and opportunities for new contracts with state agencies have also disappeared.

Unlike many nonprofits, however, HSR, as a scientific entity not associated with provision of direct social services, is not eligible for most financial relief grants. In times such as we are now experiencing as a country, nonprofits that provide for the human needs of food, shelter, utilities, medicine and services must take precedence.

HSR is all the more appreciative and grateful to all of those in the community who have stepped forward to help keep the doors open and research moving forward. The first assistance came from Citizens Bank when Business Banking Officer Taryn Armitage worked with us to secure a Payroll Protection Program loan in April. Then in June, HSR was awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the New Mexico Humanities Council. That grant secured the building that houses HSR operations through October 2020.

More recently, a number of Las Crucens have stepped forward and are generously converting their sponsorships into outright donations. They include:

  • Marcy Oxford, PhD., member of HSR board, and Grady Oxford, associate broker, Steinborn & Associates Real Estate
  • Faith Hutson and John Verploegh, longtime HSR volunteers
  • William Little, former president of the HSR board, and Christina Little
  • April Tate, co-owner of American Document Services
  • Andrea Schneider, owner of Andele’s Restaurant and Andele’s Dog House in Mesilla
  • Carol Calista, DVM, founder and owner of Calista Animal Hospital
  • Rhena Phillips, vice president and marketing and business relationships officer for Citizens Bank
  • Denise Cooper, member of Clifford, Ross, Raudenbush & Cooper, CPAs LLC
  • Christopher Sanders, vice president of First American Bank
  • Jerean and Tom Hutchinson, owners of La Posta de Mesilla
  • Charlie Estrada, commercial lines agent, Pat Campbell Insurance
  • Pam Rossi, advertising consultant, Las Cruces Bulletin

HSR’s good news has been multiplied by more than 150 ticket holders who have chosen to convert the value of their tickets into direct donations. Each and every contribution strengthens the lifeline that is helping HSR to persevere. As an organization, HSR is deeply grateful to the many individuals and businesses that have provided support and encouragement throughout our nearly 50 years of work in southern New Mexico. February 2022 will mark HSR’s golden anniversary. We hope to be able to celebrate that occasion with the Las Cruces community.

Human Systems Research, Inc. is the oldest nonprofit in New Mexico doing archeological research. HSR’s office is at 535 S. Melendres St. Contact Dennis at 575-524-9456 and Visit