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Deming Housing Executive Receives HERO Award

Ernie Watson
Release Date

USDA Rural Development State Director Arthur A. Garcia earlier today presented the New Mexico National Homeownership Month HERO Award to Veronika Molina the Executive Director is the Southwestern Regional Housing and Community Development Corporation (SRHCDC) in Deming,

Ms. Molina was nominated for the award by USDA Rural Development staff because of her tireless work to help make the “American Dream of Homeownership” come true to the residents in southern New Mexico.  

In presenting the award Garcia said, “Ms. Molina’s tireless work to provide housing opportunities for numerous families over the years earned her the HERO award.” Garcia added, “Veronika Molina joins a select few people in New Mexico who have been honored for the work they’ve done to provide homeownership opportunities to the residents of New Mexico.”

Much of Molina’s work has been in southern New Mexico where she has over the years helped applicants with applying for mortgage loans.  She has been especially successful in helping people apply for and get home loans through USDA Rural Development’s 502 direct mortgage loan program. The program assists low- and very-low-income applicants living in the rural parts of the state to obtain a no down payment home loan.  The 502 direct mortgage loan program is being used in conjunction with the Self-Help housing program funded by USDA Rural Development and administered by Southwestern Regional Housing and Community Development Corporation.

The nomination for the HERO award is made by USDA Rural Development staff based on one question, “Has anyone in New Mexico exemplified themselves in helping others attain ‘The American Dream of Homeownership’ or to help provide other housing opportunities?”

The award is not made every year and only nine New Mexicans have received the HERO award since its inception in 2002.  The recipients include:

  • The late U.S. Representative Joe Skeen for her support of housing and housing issues throughout his public career. 

  • Rose Garcia the Tierra Del Sol Housing Corporation executive director for her work to provide various forms of housing to the people in New Mexico and in Texas.
  • Rick Courtney the Executive Director of the Truth or Consequences Housing Authority for her ability to think out of the box when it comes to finding unique funding opportunities to provide various types of housing solutions for those seeking to build a home.
  • Teri Baca a Homeownership Representative for the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority (MFA) for her tireless work in the mortgage industry by providing training and information to mortgage lenders, realtors, and government entities about the various housing programs offered by MFA and other agencies.
  • Mr. Danny Rael a general contractor from Grants, New Mexico received the HERO for his work with elderly Native American clients. 
  • The late Al Heller a USDA Rural Development housing specialist received the HERO award posthumously for his work to provide home loans and rehabilitation funding for the elderly. Mr. Heller was instrumental in having the “Self Help” Housing program become a reality at Zuni Pueblo.
  • Ms. Lorelei Sanchez of Zuni Pueblo, New Mexico was nominated for the HERO award for her work with the residents of Zuni Pueblo obtain home loans in conjunction with the USDA Rural Development Self-Help program.
  •  Ms. Ramona Floyd the director of the Independent Living Resource Center (ILRC) in Moriarty, New Mexico was given the HERO award for her work to help residents in Torrance County access financial support to qualify to rehabilitate their home using USDA Rural Development Funds. 
  • Ms. Veronika Molina of Southwestern Regional Housing and Community Development Corporation for her dedication to help with technical assistance which has allowed applicants be successful in getting home loans.