Rebecca Loubriel Avitia, Trinity Class of 2003, has become the 12th recipient of the Outstanding Young Alumna Award. The awardâ€”first given in 2002â€”honors Trinity alumni who have graduated in the past 15 years for their achievements in both their profession and the community.
â€œThere was really a need to be able to award younger alumni,â€ said MaryKay Cooper, senior director of alumni relations. â€œItâ€™s really important for us to show Trinity students what neat things they can be doing with a Trinity education fairly soon after they graduate.â€
Cooper collects nominations for the award from alumni and current employees throughout the year before presenting the nominations to the selection committee, made up of members of Trinityâ€™s National Alumni Board.
â€œOur selection committee really liked Rebecca,â€ Cooper said. â€œShe was even our alumni chapter president while she was in New York. Wherever sheâ€™s been in her life, sheâ€™s managed to stay quite connected to the university.â€
While at Trinity, Avitia majored in sociology with a philosophy minor. Avitia knew going into college that she eventually wanted to become a lawyer, allowing her the freedom to choose a major based on her interests. Avitia was also president of the Association of Student Representatives and a member of Alpha Chi Lambda sorority.
â€œBecca was the ASR president. I met with her regularly and was of course at the meetings that she led with the organization,â€ said David Tuttle, vice president for student affairs and dean of students. â€œShe was a really strong leader. She was persistent, determined and her actions and decisions were steeped in values. She was also hilarious.â€
Since graduating from Trinity, Avitia went on to earn a degree with honors from Columbia Law School; has practiced law with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld in New Mexico and New York City; and has been president of the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association and chair of the New Mexico Health Law Section.
â€œAt Trinity, everyone is empowered to become a leader, whether they have a formal leadership role or not, and with that empowerment comes real responsibility,â€ Avitia said. â€œI strongly believe that having had the chance to lead at Trinity is one of the reasons I was able to rise so quickly into my current leadership role.â€
On Thursday, Nov. 20, Avitia was honored at a luncheon in the Great Hall of the Chapman Center. During the luncheon, Avitia spoke about her experiences and involvement at Trinity and how they helped lead to her post-graduation achievements.
â€œI especially enjoyed knowing that I was part of a family at Trinity. Thatâ€™s a feeling you donâ€™t get at big schools, but it felt so real at Trinity. I look back on my college years with incredible fondness,â€ Avitia said.
Avitia is now a shareholder in her law firm in Albuquerque, N.M., where she lives with her husband, Jorge Avitia, and their two children.
â€œLife is too precious to spend procrastinating tasks you dread. Â Choose a pathâ€”major, extracurriculars, a careerâ€”that you canâ€™t wait to conquer,â€ Avitia said. â€œDo what you enjoyâ€”always.â€