NMCL 30th Anniversary Conference

New Mexico Coalition for Literacy 30th Anniversary Conference

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Jodi Thomas

The purpose of language and literacy is to communicate with others and ultimately better express our humanity.

This conference celebrates the NMCL’s thirty-year history of supporting literacy and language in New Mexico through the art of writing and storytelling as presented by New York Times bestselling author, Jodi Thomas and New Mexico Humanities Council storyteller, Mary Ellen Gonzales.

Jodi Thomas, Keynote Speaker

A Writer’s Life

Jodi Thomas will share her personal journey from learning to read in the 4th grade to becoming a New York Times bestselling author.

Mary Ellen Gonzales, Luncheon Storyteller

Stories to Bridge Cultures

She tells stories from all cultures, but her specialty is Hispanic stories from Northern New Mexico.  She explores cultural values as revealed by the stories people tell.


Jodi Thomas

Jodi Thomas

Jodi Thomas

With millions of books in print, Jodi Thomas is both a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 45 novels and 13 short story collections. Her stories travel through the past and present days of Texas and draw readers from around the world.

In July 2006, Jodi was the 11th writer to be inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. With five RITA’s to her credit, along with National Readers’ Choice Awards and Booksellers’ Best Awards, Thomas has proven her skill as a master storyteller.

Honored in 2002 as a Distinguished Alumni by Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Thomas enjoys interacting with students at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas, where she currently serves as Writer in Residence.

Mary Ellen Gonzales

Mary Ellen Gonzales

Mary Ellen Gonzales

Mary Ellen Gonzales traces her ancestry in New Mexico back to before the Pueblo Revolt of 1680.  She was raised on a ranch near Chama, New Mexico. She is half Hispanic and half Anglo and views her job as being a “culture bridger.” Mary Ellen tells stories from all cultures, but her specialty is Hispanic stories from Northern New Mexico. She explores cultural values as revealed by the stories people tell.Mary Ellen was fortunate to sit at the feet of a Keeper of Ancient Wisdom, learning truths that have been handed down for centuries, mostly in story. She understands that cultural values are handed down from generation to generation through stories and likes to explore them. Mary Ellen believes that “Storytelling is a gift that demands expression.”

Ghost Tour

There will be a ghost tour of historic, downtown Santa Fe leaving from the hotel lobby at 4:30. The tour will last approximately one hour. From there, you will receive an overture on the history of the area and end at La Posada with the story of Julia Staab and The Haunting. To participate, just check the “ghost tour” option when you register.

Event Details


Friday, September 8, 2017 from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM MDT
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La Posada de Santa Fe
330 E Palace Avenue
Santa Fe, NM 87501

Driving Directions


Ellen Gallegos
New Mexico Coalition for Literacy

Conference Hotel

Conference attendees can enjoy a discounted rate on overnight accommodations and hotel services.  Just mention that you are with the New Mexico Coalition for Literacy conference when you call, 505-986-0000.

More Event Details

There will be workshops in the morning and afternoon for volunteer tutors, boards of directors, adult literacy program personnel, and anyone interested in community based adult literacy programs. The general public is invited to attend.

Workshop topics include:

  • Informal Assessment (READ)
  • Student Goal Setting
  • Setting Boundaries Between Tutors and Students
  • The Brain & Body Connection
  • Governance & Program Management

There are a limited number of program scholarships available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Just check the “scholarship” option in the payment section when you register and the NMCL will follow-up with additional Information by email.

Conference Schedule

8:00- Check-in & On-Site Registration       

9:00- Welcome & Introduction of Keynote Speaker


9:05- Keynote: Jodi Thomas             

10:00- Break & Booksigning                       

10:15- Workshops

12:15- Luncheon

12:45- Awards Ceremony

1:00- Storyteller, Mary Ellen Gonzales

1:45- Break & Booksigning                           

2:00- Workshops

3:45- Raffle

4:00- Farewell

4:30- Ghost Tour

Register Now!