Story and Photo by E.C. McRoy

President Tracy Hartzler, president of CNM since January 1st, 2020, said that she has always been surrounded by women leaders and it is the public conversation that makes a difference to determine whether a woman can win the presidency.

Hartzler said she went to a women’s college and was surrounded by strong females who have shown that they not only can be leaders but do well in those positions.

“Can women be president [of the USA]? Of course,” said Hartzler.

Hartzler said that while women have always sought power and people take for granted that a woman can run for president now as well.

Having a woman on the presidential ticket as a presidential candidate or a VP once was a novelty; “I don’t think it’s a novelty now,” said Hartzler.

Personal experience has shown that women are able to find compromises and to negotiate, according to Hartzler.

While historically women may have been limited to career paths in education or caregiving, those options have changed, and Hartzler said that women have always led even if that hasn’t been in political offices.

Hartzler said that things are often portrayed as black and white, but that isn’t a fair representation and this doesn’t encourage a thoughtful response or conversation.

“I think what is challenging is the public discourse doesn’t favor compromise,” said Hartzler. “I just think the discourse now is hard. It’s hard to be thoughtful.”

In the last U.S. Election, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote and Hartzler said that the popular vote is important because of how it changes the conversation.

The conversation is important according to Hartzler, because it’s difficult to govern without taking into account what the people want.

The goal is bringing people together and women do so in a different way to find solutions.

“You want people to shape the conversation and I think what we miss … is that public service is a tremendous honor and it’s a tremendous responsibility to serve your fellow residents,” said Hartzler.

Hartzler said that those students interested in making a difference should participate in government at all levels, to “go out and run, make a difference. Challenge us.”

According the Hartzler the biggest thing is to engage and participate even if it is only at the most basic level.

At a minimum, those who wish to make a difference should go out and vote, said Hartzler.

Those with more ambition can look at volunteering on a campaign, running for government or student council which affects CNM on a local level, said Hartzler.

“No matter his or her background or political views, you want everyone to participate in the process because dialogue is so important to make a better process for a better solution,” said Hartzler. “And I think that is gender neutral.”

Hartzler said governing needs to be inclusive and everyone should be encouraged to participate, because we need to work together to accomplish things successfully.

Participation shows how institutions and governments have a role that impacts the community and our involvement in those institutions makes a difference, said Hartzler.

The U.S. is a republic with an electoral college that the public follows which can allow for polarization and attempts to reconcile the representative vote and the popular vote, said Hartzler.

“We all have a responsibility to participate,” said Hartzler.

Picture below provided by CNM’s Presidential Office.

A person wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera

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Tracy Hartzler, President of CNM since January 1st, 2020.

Tracy Hartzler Biography: https://www.cnm.edu/about/president/presidents-biography

Register to Vote in Albuquerque: https://www.cabq.gov/vote/election-information/voter-information/voter-registration

2020 Presidential Candidates via The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2019/jan/17/2020-election-candidates-list-democrats-primaries-trump-bernie-sanders-joe-biden-elizabeth-warren-kamala-harris-beto-o-rourke-running

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