Date: November 11, 2021

Contact: Danielle Casey, AED, 602-332-8511

AED Announces 505 Award Honorees
Recognizes Leadership in Economic Development in the ABQ Metro

Albuquerque, NM – Albuquerque Economic Development announces the honorees for the third annual 505 Awards, which recognize organizations and individuals that are making exceptional contributions to economic growth and prosperity in the Albuquerque metro area, resulting in improvements to the region’s overall economic strength. New this year will be an inaugural celebration entitled “A Year of Strategic Moves” from 6 – 9 p.m. on December 9 at Hotel Albuquerque, combining AED’s annual business meeting, a year in review presentation, a look ahead to the future, and the 505 Awards celebration. The awards program is sponsored by True Health New Mexico.

“Albuquerque businesses have faced challenge after challenge throughout the past two years, but they have continued to show ingenuity and perseverance to grow and thrive,” said Danielle Casey, AED President & CEO. “Our 505 Awards program allows us to recognize the hard work of these leaders, as well as the lasting positive economic impacts on our community.”


2021 Honoree: Homewise

This award recognizes an organization that has made significant contributions toward strengthening the community’s economy. The organization may be public or private; must have an established operation with employees in the Albuquerque metro area; and must describe and quantify how the organization has contributed to economic development in the region through leadership, financial support, local investments, hiring, training, or related activities.



2021 Honoree: TLC Plumbing

This award recognizes an organization that has played a leading role in workforce readiness, including the implementation of training and educational programs, the sponsorship of scholarship or grant programs, the creation of internship or mentorship programs, or other efforts to develop long-term job skills and career pathways for the region’s workforce.


SMALL BUSINESS CHAMPION AWARD (Sponsored by New Mexico Mutual)

2021 Honoree: BioScience Center/ FatPipe

This award recognizes a small business (100 employees or less) that is creating an environment focusing on collaboration, innovation and hard work, consistently demonstrating a commitment to its employees, clients and Albuquerque.


In addition to the organizations being honored, the 505 Awards also recognize the work of individuals making a difference in economic development in the local community. This year’s winners include:


LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD (Sponsored by Bank of Albuquerque)

2021 Honoree: Debbie Johnson,

This award recognizes an individual whose ongoing commitment to economic development has made a significant and lasting impact on the Albuquerque metro area. This individual must have a demonstrated history of supporting and implementing economic development initiatives in the Albuquerque metro area over a minimum period of 15 years; must be a positive role model in the community; and must have a track record of executing projects that create jobs, diversify the region’s economy and spur investment in the state.



2021 Honoree: Dale Dekker, Founding Principal Dekker Perich Sabatini

This award recognizes a business leader who has made a measurable difference in the economic development arena during the past year by investing in projects that have created or will create jobs in the Albuquerque metro area. Individuals nominated for this award were required to work in the private sector.



2021 Honoree: Marcos A. Gonzales, Assistant Director, Bernalillo County Economic Development

This award recognizes a current or former public official or public employee who has served as a committed supporter of economic development efforts over a period of at least three years.


RISING STAR AWARD (Sponsored by Deloitte)

2021 Honoree: Kristen Gamboa, Senior Economic Developer, Village of Los Lunas

This award recognizes an emerging leader who is contributing to economic development programs, projects and activities in a significant manner that leads to increasing investment in the community and job creation.



2021 Honoree: Lonnie Talbert, President and COO, Southwest Capital Bank

This award recognizes individuals or organizations that have exemplified support for economic development efforts in alignment with AED’s Strategic Plan in a wide variety of areas, truly setting the bar for the future of the region.

To attend the 2021 Inaugural Annual Dinner, where honorees will be recognized, or for more information on awards categories, eligibility requirements or judging criteria, visit

The awards program is made possible by Premier Sponsor True Health New Mexico. Category sponsors include NUSENDA Credit Union, Facebook, New Mexico Mutual, Bank of Albuquerque, PNC and Deloitte.



About AED

AED is a private, nonprofit organization whose mission is to recruit business and industry, help local companies grow and generate quality job opportunities throughout the Albuquerque metro area. AED provides confidential assistance to businesses considering the area for expansion and new investment. Since its creation in 1960, AED has recruited more than 250 companies and more than 35,000 jobs to the Albuquerque metro area. AED also provides retention and expansion assistance to existing industry. For more information about AED, visit

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