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HOBY New Mexico Alumni

This weekend has been such a significant blessing in my life. I leave my HOBY family with such inspiration, knowledge, and a better understanding of what leadership actually is. I have made a very important goal for myself—to become further involved in HOBY, and to live to serve. I believe that learning to do, doing to learn, and living to serve is going to bring me happiness that wouldn’t be apparent otherwise.
— Cohen, Las Cruces HS
My HOBY Leadership Seminar taught me that I have potential; HOBY WLC taught me that I have a place in the world; and HOBY ALA taught me how to use my potential to change the world.
— Robert Baurley
PA-E ’12, WLC ’12, ALA Fall ’13
Thank you so much for allowing me the honor of coming and experiencing HOBY. It has been a very fun and educational learning experience and I hope to come back next year.
— Lyrik, Eunice HS
I just want to say thank you for bringing HOBY back to New Mexico. I know that the entire seminar has changed the lives of many in the last two years, including mine. Thank you so very much for everything you have done for me and everyone else.
— Regan
I can’t wait until 2015’s HOBY seminar after coming to 2014’s HOBY seminar. Thank you.
— Sarah, Alamogordo HS
This weekend has honestly been one of the best of my life. I have grown in confidence and am more aware of all the ways to put myself out there and help my community. I have also made AMAZING friends....
— Xavier, AIMS@UNM
HOBY has truly been a life-changing experience.
— Tyler, Reserve HS
I had such an awesome time at HOBY. My teacher first told me about it but I didn’t know much. I’m so glad I came because ... I learned to be less shy and be a leader. Leaders aren’t usually shy so this seminar helped so much it’s unexplainable...
— Tyler, Roy HS
Lifelong friends and and a big part of the puzzle I know as my life. That is what being part of the HOBY family has meant to me. Attending as an ambassador was the beginning of a foundation that built my confidence in myself. After many years away from HOBY and building my family and career, I can return to help the next generation of leaders.
— Mike Romo, Dir of Recruitment
Vaughn HS, HOBY-NM 1989
When I signed up for HOBY I had no idea what I was getting myself into. However, I am so thankful I got this opportunity.
— Noor, Robert H. Goddard HS
HOBY was a pivotal moment in my life. I arrived feeling skeptical about the seminar and left completely inspired. HOBY changed my leadership style, forced me to push past my own limits, and encouraged me to break out of my shell. If I had one word of advice for rising sophomores: Try it. You will not regret it.
— Rochelle, NM Military Institute
I don’t know where to begin to thank you for this opportunity...My life has changed, for the better, and will continue to change.
— Alex, Robertson HS


I’ve been extremely pleased with my students’ experiences in HOBY-NM. The program motivates young people to embrace and enhance their leadership skills and validates their natural desire to do something above and beyond the typical daily life of a teenager. HOBY helps create excitement and enthusiasm in much-needed future leaders. Through HOBY, these young people learn valuable skills and motivation which they’ll use in their schools, their communities, and in whatever paths they pursue throughout their lives.
— Valerie Velhagen
College & Career Counselor
Eldorado High School
Because we are a boarding school, those of our students who had participated in HOBY, did so in their home states. In Spring of 2013, I received an email from Suzann Owings, the new Leadership Seminar Chair for New Mexico. She is an enthusiastic advocate who rallied our students, parents, counselors and staff to support the resurrection of HOBY-New Mexico. That summer we sent 5 NMMI Cadets to HOBY, 2 from New Mexico, and all of whom returned with a new-found enthusiasm to lead.
— Maj. Kathryn D'Antonio
NM Military Institute
Many of the students chosen to attend were already leaders in the school, but the years I remember best were those years that the shyer, less-known or less ‘popular’ student won the chance to attend; those students especially came back totally enthralled. When a student who is not continually ‘fussed over’ gets to do something special because he or she wrote the best anonymous statement of what leadership means to him or her, it impacts that student so deeply. Yearly I see what it does to these young people—and what it does is give them a newfound confidence. They come back ready to change the world. It’s remarkable. It’s amazing. It’s wonderful. All these years, I’m so glad I had the chance to help these kiddos get to HOBY. Here’s to HOBY!
— Kathy Martinez
English Teacher, Roy High School
HOBY continues to be a vital program serving our youth. NASSP has enjoyed a professional relationship with Hugh O’Brian and HOBY since 1972. We believe that the long history and commitment of these outstanding HOBY programs are most worthy of our and your support as they continue to contribute effectively to the development of young people. HOBY has my full support and personal endorsement.
— Gerald Tirozzi, PhD, Former Exec Dir
Nat. Assoc. of Secondary School Principals

Film & Media Personalities

You know, we business people like to say we’re driven by the bottom line. The real bottom line is the future, and we owe it to our youth to prepare them for that. Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) does just that. By promoting leadership, HOBY is building a corps of young people who will be prepared to meet the challenges facing future generations.
— Ted Turner, Chairman
Turner Broadcasting Systems
One of the best things that Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) does is it labels every student who attends the conference a leader, whether they’ve ever considered themselves one before or not. Second thing it does is it allows sophomores, possibly for the first time in their lives, a chance to leave behind everyone’s ideas of who they are. For that weekend… they’re completely free to come up with their own definition of self…
— James Van Der Beek, Actor
1993 HOBY Alumnus

Empower • Lead • Excel