Local businessman receives honors from College of Engineering
Orlando Cervantes is being honored as Ingeniero Eminente by the NMSU College of Engineering in recognition of his achievements and contributions to his profession as a civil engineer at the Sociedad de Ingenieros and Order of the Engineer ceremony for engineering graduates. The ceremony will be held Dec. 12 at 4:30 pm in the Corbett Center Ballrooms.
Cervantes, a native of El Paso, was a gifted athlete, serving as captain of the football, basketball and baseball teams, inducted in the El Paso High School Hall of Fame. He attended NMSU on a football scholarship and lettered in both football and baseball. Following his first year of college, he volunteered for active duty and served in Korea, returning with an honorable discharge to continue his studies at NMSU. He received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He held several positions on the West Coast, including serving as a building official for the Los Angeles County Building Department. Cervantes is recognized for his work with the International Conference of Building Officials, which publishes codes that establish minimum performance requirements for the construction industry. Cervantes returned to the Mesilla Valley where he established Cervantes Enterprises, through which he further distinguished himself as an innovator in engineering and agricultural production. Working with companies from Louisiana, he introduced a new crop and processing method to the Mesilla Valley. Starting with10 acres of Tabasco peppers, the crop is now several thousand acres and produces more than 30 million pounds of mash, becoming a major local crop. Cervantes has used his expertise to further his role in civic and community organizations. He has served on the La Mesa and Chamberino Cotton Gin Board of Directors, as chairman of the Anthony Chapter of the Doña Ana County Farm and Livestock Bureau Board of Directors, and on the Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors. He was chairman of the Board of Directors for the Rio Grande Natural Gas Association. As a member of the Planning and Zoning Board for Doña Ana County he was instrumental in developing the performance zoning ordinance for the county. He was also instrumental in developing the Planning and Building Inspection Departments for Doña Ana County and the city of Sunland Park. The Sociedad de Ingenieros was established on the campus of New Mexico State University on December 12, 1989. The society is dedicated to each graduating class of engineers in anticipation of the future contributions they will make to society while practicing their profession, and to the families of these new engineers who have supported their sons, daughters, and friends toward the achievement of their academic goals. At each ceremony, Eminente members are inducted into the society. These recipients are NMSU College of Engineering alumni who have distinguished themselves in their field of study. The Eminentes serve as role models for the new graduates.
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