New Mexico Distinguished Public Service Awards 2012
Recognizing Those Committed to Making a Difference
Anthony B. Schroeder
After capping a stellar 33-year career as a Professor of Communication at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, Dr. Schroeder accelerated his “second career” as a volunteer. He is a tireless supporter of his community, a leader in service projects, and a champion of good causes. According to a letter of nomination in his behalf, “When people need to get things done, they want Tony Schroeder on their team.”

His peers describe Dr. Schroeder as “an institution unto himself” within the ENMU community. He led the Student Research Conference for 10 years, and chaired the Commission on Communication and Aging of the Communication Association of America. Dr. Schroeder authored ENMU’s Human Subjects Protection policy, and served as department chair, director of assessment, and director of the Extended Learning initiative, all positions of trust and responsibility.

Tony’s unflagging support of students was a hallmark of his years with ENMU. He was always willing to take on new responsibilities or help with weekend projects. Dr. Schroeder volunteered his time and talents to help the University’s FM station raise money for programming, to the tune of some $25,000 each membership drive. Tony built and sustained the debate team, and with his loyal students hosted the regional speech competitions for 29 years. He has a statewide and regional reputation for his teaching, scholarship and service to his profession, as noted by ENMU President Steven Gamble.

When Tony retired in 2009, his level of activity increased. He is active in the Portales Kiwanis Club, helping with the chili supper and spring garden sale – even delivering flowers to Kiwanis clients. Tony supports his church, St. Helen’s, and is a member of the Knights of Columbus, a fraternal organization that helps families and the needy within the Catholic community. Dr. Schroeder’s work with the United Way is well known (he is the current vice president), from volunteering to take on tough committee jobs, to working in the trenches alongside his wife.

“To see Tony in an apron helping with the St. Helen’s fish fry, or dishing up Kiwanis chili is a thing to behold,” wrote one of his supporters. The letter continued: “(Tony) is genuinely interested in helping people, in addressing and understanding their needs; and, frankly, in making the world better.”