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First News Spring 2006

Business Feature - Raton
Rebranding Downtown

   In July of 2005 the community of Raton received wonderful news! Its application to become one of 22 New Mexico MainStreet communities had been approved. A group of dedicated volunteers had worked on the application process for several months, but now it was time to get to work — again. The volunteers began to assemble a board of directors and decisions had to be made such as what they should call themselves. The board decided on Raton MainStreet, Inc. So with the guidance of New Mexico MainStreet they began the implementation of the four-point approach developed by the National MainStreet Center of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The MainStreet approach outlines a four-point plan to create a complete commercial district revitalization program. They are: design, economic positioning, promotions, and organization.

MainStreet Inc.
Shelly Romero-Wood, Executive Director

   The design committee is responsible to create an image for the main street district by formulating a plan to create an inviting and attractive atmosphere for residents. The design committee is currently working on a proposal to obtain funding for a downtown master plan, to discover opportunities within Raton's downtown area for improvement, and to outline a plan to capitalize on existing assets.

   The promotions committee is responsible to promote the Raton MainStreet organization as well as the downtown area. They are currently working on a series of summer concert events that will take place downtown at Ripley Park. “Music on MainStreet” will be a series of free concerts for people of all ages and musical interests to appreciate.

   The economic positioning committee works to strengthen the community’s existing assets while expanding its economic base. This committee, in conjunction with the University of New Mexico Bureau of Business and Economic Research, are currently working to identify the existing assets in downtown Raton as well as defining areas for potential economic growth.

   The organizational committee keeps Raton MainStreet financially healthy and oversees the management of its resources. The committee is currently spearheading a Raton MainStreet, Inc. membership drive to recruit partners and establish relationships throughout the community.

Front: Cathy Naylor, Sue Flemming, Diana Sanchez-Feerer
Middle: Randy Rubin, Howard Woodworth, Jennifer Wiseman, Stuart Hyatt, Jonni Valdez-Silva
Back: Alan Best, Paul Jenkins, Mike Kowalski, Rich Kuhns, Jennifer Sparaco, Shelly Wood
Not Pictured: Jeanie Barnes, Sandy Mantz

    Raton MainStreet, Inc. is an organization built on a foundation of dedicated volunteers. The board of directors is the backbone of their volunteer base. All Raton MainStreet board members also serve as volunteers on one of the designated committees along with other community volunteers. These individuals lend their time, talents, ideas and professional ethics to Raton MainStreet, Inc. and have defined a mission statement to advance their community which reads: “ We are committed members of the community dedicated to improving the quality of life in Raton by revitalizing our downtown area. We want to foster business prosperity and offer new economic opportunities. We seek to have a community where all generations can have a sense of pride in Raton and all cultures feel respect for their heritage.”



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