In July of 2010 the Board of Directors of the Malpai Borderlands Group voted to establish a scholarship fund, in the memory of former Malpai Board Member Rob Krentz, to assist worthy high school graduates in the Malpai Borderlands region with furthering their education. Scholarships will be given annually to a student (or students) in any subject. Financial need and scholastic achievements will be the main considerations for the scholarship.

Much has already been written and broadcast about the tragic death of Rob Krentz. On March 27, while checking livestock and wildlife waters in one of the pastures on his ranch, Rob was shot, apparently without provocation, by an unknown person. Tracks of the killer went into Mexico and the area is part of a corridor that has been used for smuggling activities. It appears to have been a case of Rob being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Those of us who live here know that Rob was in the right place – on his ranch, doing what he was supposed to do. We were and are shocked, outraged and saddened by the loss of our friend, neighbor and colleague. However, the fact that something horrible happened here did not surprise us. We had predicted that such a thing was likely to occur and had been asking for more enforcement attention for this neglected part of the border. It took the murder of one of us to finally get it.

Not as much has been written about the way Rob Krentz lived. Rob epitomized what the Malpai Borderlands Group is about. If any one thing could be said to characterize Rob, it was his generosity. He had a hard time saying no whenever asked to lend a hand and often went out of his way to help others when he saw the need, asked or not. This generosity extended to strangers as well as to friends and neighbors. Rob was a religious man and he really believed in being "thy brother's keeper". He was also strongly dedicated to the ranching tradition and to the stewardship that has kept the Krentz Ranch going for over 100 years. The Krentz family demonstrated their commitment to the goals of the Malpai Borderlands Group to "protect a healthy, unfragmented landscape" and "encourage profitable ranching and other traditional livelihoods which will sustain the open space of our land for generations to come" by conveying a conservation easement on their ranch to the Malpai Borderlands Group in 2003. That means that their beautiful ranch that runs from the Chiricahua Mountains well into the San Bernardino Valley that will never be subdivided.

Rob Krentz had another passion besides ranching. A graduate of the University of Arizona , he believed very strongly in the importance of education. Rob saw all three of his children attend college (two graduated from New Mexico State University) and he sat on the school board for the one-room school in Apache, Arizona for over two decades. If there was an FFA field day, a 4H competition, or anything involving kids and education going on, no one was ever surprised to see Rob involved. He also believed in education being a life-long endeavor. Rob was a recent graduate of Project Central, the Center for Rural Leadership, and he demonstrated his leadership by serving as President of the Cochise-Graham Cattle Growers' Association and as Chairman of the Whitewater Draw Natural Resource Conservation District, in addition to his service to the Malpai Group. It is fitting that the Malpai Borderlands Group honors Rob Krentz by establishing this scholarship that bears his name.

   Ember Kimball from San Simon High School   2021 Recipient

The 2021 Rob Krentz Memorial Scholarship recipient is Ember Kimball from San Simon High School. Ember was a member of the National Honor Society and FFA. She will be attending Pima Community College in Tucson this fall to study Veterinary Technology.

Lauren fullen Lauren Fullen from Douglas High School  2020 Recipient   

I am attending Cochise College and plan to transfer to Pima Community College to complete my associate’s degree with a veterinary technician certification. I then plan to attend Western New Mexico University to earn my bachelor’s degree in zoology, with a goal of attending veterinary school.

   Tana Webster from San Simon High School   2019 Recipient

I will continue at Cochise College next year and will get my Associate's degree in Animal Science while competing on the rodeo team.  

     Madison Michaels from Willcox HIgh School  2018 Recipient

I am currently attending NMSU, studying animal science and agriculture business. Upon graduation, I plan to get a job in the ag industry and apply to vet school. I currently work at a feed store, using my knowledge and working with others in the ag community.

 Rayce Wagley from Animas High School  2017 Recipient

I am a senior this year at NMSU. I am an Agronomy major and plan to graduate this May. With this degree I plan to move back to my family’s farm and use what I have learned from school to implement more sustainable practices and improve those we are already using. School has been going well and I have learned more than I could have ever dreamed.

C.P. Stocker Scholarship

  Mikala Driscoll from San Simon HIgh School  2021 Recipient

The 2021 Stocker Scholarship recipient is Mikala Driscoll from San Simon High School. Mikala was a member of the National Honor Society and FFA. She will be attending New Mexico State University to major in Animal Science and to pursue a career as a rural and mobile veterinarian.

 Ty Wagley from Animas High School   2019 Recipient 

Ty Wagley is the 2019 recipient of the C.P. Stocker Scholarship.  Ty is a Freshman at NMSU and plans to Major in Agronomy.

  Zachary Winkler from Animas High School 2016 Recipient

Zach recently graduated from New Mexico State University, and is currently an intern at Oncor Electric Delivery in Fort Worth, Texas. He was accepted into the graduate program at NMSU for Electrical Engineering, and plans to concentrate his studies in Digital Signal Processing.

    Dallas Pompeo from Animas High School 2015 Recipient

This will be my final semester in the graduate program at NMSU. I will be graduating with my Master of Arts in Special Education in December 2020 after completing my final class and semester of teaching observations.

Last Updates:6/22/21

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