The University of New Mexico School of Law Mexican American Law Student Association (MALSA) received the 2013 National Achievement Award for Diversity from the Law Student Division of the American Bar Association honored the with the 2013 National Achievement Award for Diversity. The award was given to members of the 2012-13 MALSA board at the ABA annual meeting in San Francisco, Calif.
Each year, the award recognizes the efforts of a Student Bar Association organization committed to activities that contribute toward the achievement and advancement of women, minorities, persons of disability, persons of different sexual orientation and gender identities.
“This award is a result of over 42 years of relentless advocacy and courageous pioneering by the thousands of ‘Malseros’ that came before us to advance minority access to the law and legal education in New Mexico,” Consuelo Gonzales, MALSA co-president, said. “This recognition gives national meaning to MALSA’s legacy of exemplary service to the people of the State of New Mexico and to the cause of diversity in the practice of law.”
Gonzales and fellow MALSA Co-President Jessica Candelaria explain that through a legacy of educational initiatives and mentorship programming, MALSA aims to bring people from every spectrum of New Mexico communities together to foster a legal ecosystem that closely reflects our society and addresses the needs of all its citizens. Candelaria added, “This support includes everything from high school mock trial workshops to practice LSAT tests to mentorship opportunities with local attorneys and judges. Our focus is on empowering minority students and ensuring that our legal community is reflective of our community at large.”
Max Minzner, UNM professor of law and associate dean for faculty development, assisted in preparing MALSA’s nomination. “The law school is incredibly proud of MALSA and their recognition as a national leader in diversity in legal education,” he said. “This award reflects the deep commitment here at the UNM School of Law to serving the diverse communities of New Mexico and the nation as a whole.”