campus news & events

Colby-Sawyer College Hosted Alumna Barbara Richardson, First Lady of New Mexico and Wife of Presidential Candidate Bill Richardson

NEW LONDON, N.H., Nov. 9, 2007 — Colby-Sawyer College hosted a reception for alumna Barbara Flavin Richardson '69, First Lady of New Mexico and wife of Governor Bill Richardson, a 2008 Democratic presidential candidate.

The event was held Monday, Nov. 19, at 4:15 p.m. in the Alumni Lounge at the Ware Campus Center. Mrs. Richardson spoke on behalf of Governor Richardson's presidential campaign and answered questions from individual audience members.

Barbara Flavin grew up in Concord, Massachusetts, and earned an Associate of Arts degree from Colby-Sawyer College (then Colby Junior College) before graduating magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Wheaton College.

Bill and Barbara met in Massachusetts, where they both attended high school. This year the couple celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary.

As First Lady of New Mexico, Mrs. Richardson has worked with multiple organizations to improve the lives of all New Mexicans and bring attention to important issues in her state. She has been especially focused on improving the literacy and vaccination rates for New Mexico's children. Mrs. Richardson helped organize the donation of thousands of children's books and educational videos to low-income families across New Mexico, the state's elementary schools and the University of New Mexico Children's Hospital.

Mrs. Richardson has also served as the Honorary Chair for the New Mexico Immunization Coalition; her efforts have helped dramatically increase the number of children in New Mexico who have been fully vaccinated. She has committed to reaching or surpassing the Healthy People 2010 goal of 90 percent of fully immunized children. Read a 2005 profile on Barbara Richardson, "First Lady for the People."

Additionally, she has served as chair for Read Across America in New Mexico and helped form the New Mexico Big Brothers/Big Sisters First Lady's Bowl for Kids Sake, which has raised more than $150,000 over the past four years. The First Lady also served as chair of the Governor's Domestic Violence Advisory Board and helped create New Mexico's Office of Domestic Violence. When the Richardsons lived in Washington, D.C., she was program coordinator for the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Washington, D.C.

Colby-Sawyer, founded in 1837, is a comprehensive liberal arts college located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire. Students from 25 states and five foreign countries learn in small classes through a select array of programs that integrate the liberal arts and sciences with pre-professional experience. Visit us on the World Wide Web at

Colby-Sawyer College, 541 Main Street, New London, N.H. 03257 (603) 526-3000