The University of New Mexico Board of Regents recently honored two venerable staff members that have decided to retire. Breda Bova received the Meritorious Service Medal and UNM Chief of Police Kathy Guimond, the UNM Alumni Association Honorary Membership Award.

Bova, who has been at UNM for nearly four decades, taught in the College of Education where she also served as associate dean. She was Faculty Representative of the National Collegiate Athletic Association and was responsible for the certification of all of the student athletes at UNM. She spent eight years in the Office of the President as a senior advisor and chief of staff for five UNM presidents.

“I am very grateful to the Board of Regents for this award and to UNM for all the opportunities that have been given to me,” she said. 

Bova holds a Ph.D. in Adult Education from UNM, an M.S. degree in Educational Research from the University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics Education from St. Thomas Aquinas College, Sparkhill, NY.

She has received numerous awards including the 2011 Distinguished Public Service Award from the State of New Mexico; 2006 Spirit of Achievement Award; Student Services Award-UNM, 2003; the Zia Award-Outstanding Alumnae from UNM, 2002; Distinguished Woman of the Year Award for the State of New Mexico; NM Commission on the Status of Women, 1997; Woman on the Move Award-YMCA in the category Educational Administration, 1997; and earlier this year, she received the Erna Ferguson Award from the UNM Alumni Association.

The Alumni Association Board of Directors elects honorary lifetime members to the association who have demonstrated outstanding service to UNM or to society as a whole, and Guimond has more than met that criteria. She served UNM as Police Chief for over 18 years and in that time provided an extremely effective operation. She showed remarkable leadership when presented with challenges and opportunities confronting law enforcement and security for the University while continually demonstrating high professionalism, dedication, integrity and high ethical standards.

"Awards don’t happen in a vacuum,” Guimond said. “All this is the work of the police department, regents, faculty, staff and students. Institutions are driven by people. For me, it’s always been about UNM.”

Guimond earned her baccalaureate in history and political science at Northern Illinois University and continued her graduate work there in political science and public law. She is a graduate of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va. She came to UNM after retiring from the Northern Illinois University Police Department where she served as a lieutenant, sergeant and police officer for more than 21 years. In Illinois, she was a catalyst for a change in Illinois’ domestic violence law, and was instrumental in developing the Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) that is now utilized around the country, including at UNM.