Local News

  • Largest firefighter recruit class in history now underway

    The current class of 34 recruits marks the largest ever assembled by the Los Alamos Fire Department in its 19-year history since joining the county.

    Battalion Chief Edward Henry Ortiz heads up the LAFD training division responsible for molding the men and women recruits into top-notch firefighters.

    “We’ve got a great group ranging in age from late teens to early 40s,” Ortiz said. “The majority are from New Mexico whereas last year we had about a 50-50 mix of recruits from New Mexico and those from out of state.”

  • LANL names a new leader of public affairs

    Los Alamos National Laboratory named Lisa Franklin Rosendorf on Tuesday to head the Communications and Government Affairs Division.

    She takes the place of David McCumber, who has expressed his desire to return to the practice of law and has been reassigned to the office of Legal Council, according to a lab announcement.

    “There is a real transformation underway as the laboratory becomes a 21st century hub for national security science,” Rosendorf said in a telephone interview this morning.

  • Judicial complex construction to begin next week

    Starting next week, residents will find Oppenheimer Drive closed for construction as work starts on the new Judicial/Police/Jail complex.

    Capital Projects Manager Anne Laurent and Public Works Director Kyle Zimmerman were in council chambers for Tuesday night’s meeting to ask that council approve the services agreement with HB Construction of Albuquerque, authorizing them to move forward with work associated with the JPJ complex.

    Council voted 6-1 to pass the motion, with Vice Chair Robert Gibson voting against it.

  • Open Space Specialist forges new trails

    Craig Martin is a man of many trades. He’s a writer, a teacher, a husband, a father, an avid hiker and the go-to guy for trail maintenance in Los Alamos County.

    Martin always knew he had a love for the outdoors. His interest became apparent to him when he was growing up in Philadelphia and was a Boy Scout.

    “I thought it was neat. I’d never been out in the woods before,” he said.

  • Nuclear forensics: more talk, little funding

    A month past the seventh anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, a robust program for nuclear forensics has been touted as a future livelihood for the nuclear weapons labs, but serious plans and recommendations have yet to get to the drawing board.

    The possibility of nuclear weapons reaching the hands of terrorists, while technically difficult, has often been described as a matter of “not if, but when.”

  • Deputy DA expresses consternation over local case

    In a recent letter and during a telephone interview this morning, Deputy District Attorney Barbara Romo explained why she hasn’t advanced the Joong Dae Cha sex crime case.

    “I consider two factors in determining a case,” Romo said. “Is there enough evidence and is the victim emotionally able to go forward with the case.”

    Romo explained that while there is sufficient evidence in the Cha case to move forward, the child’s mother has made it clear that her daughter is not emotionally strong enough at this time to withstand a trial.

  • Police Beat 10-14-08

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. If you don't want it printed - don't let it happen.

    Sept. 11


    Robert F. Stafford passed away on October 7, 2008, with is family by his side. He was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Betty Stafford.

    He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Venus; sons: Brian (Ann) and Bob. Robert was the owner of Stafford Aviation for 30 years where he retired in 2001.

    A Mass will be celebrated Tuesday, October 14, 2008, at 10 a.m. at St. Anne’s Catholic Church.

    Arrangements are under the direction of Berardinelli Family Funeral Service, 1399 Luisa St. Santa Fe, NM 87505. (505) 984-8600.


    Sharon Lynn Gilbert Rokowski, 48, who grew up in Los Alamos, passed away Saturday, September 27th, in Tome, NM. Born September 6, 1960, in Albuquerque, Sharon’s family moved to Los Alamos in l970.

    She graduated from LAHS in l978, went on to become a Respiratory Therapist and worked for many years at the University of Colorado Medical Center. She loved skiing and was a member of the Los Alamos Ski Patrol in high school.

  • Beam solves the 'case of the gold'

    Several valuable nuggets have been locked in a safe every night at Los Alamos National Laboratory lately, and that isn’t a reference to weapons codes or nuclear secrets.

    A New Mexico State University neutron physicist working with a geologist from Ohio has kept some precious pieces of raw gold in the vault at the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center.

    That’s where they are secured when Heinz Nakotte is not actually peering inside one or another to see how it’s made.