The Atrisco Companies

February 6, 2024 - Megan Borders

AHF LogoA decade before Jamestown was established, pioneers in what is now New Mexico settled and began farming in the Rio Grande Valley. As the original settlers of the Town of Atrisco, a group of 12 families petitioned and was gifted their land in 1692, establishing the Atrisco Land Grant. At the time, the land grant stretched from west of the Rio Grande to the east bank of the Rio Puerco.

Heirs of the 12 families have grown to 8,000 families, and each one can trace their lineage over 300 years in the Rio Grande area. These descendants are known as Atrisqueños.

Today, The Atrisco Companies stands as the protector of the heritage and lineage of the Town of Atrisco. It is a social enterprise composed of seven nonprofit organizations that were established to maintain, honor and share the rich history of the original Atrisco Land Grant. The seven companies are The Atrisco Heritage Foundation, El Campo Santo, Inc., Rio Grande Educational Collaborative, Spanish Market, Fathers Building Futures, Atrisco Natural Resource Management and the Mariachi Spectacular de Albuquerque.

The pillars on which this group of companies stands are cultural preservation, education and economic development. Their mission is to make elevated services attainable for all New Mexicans pursuing richer and more profound experiences for their families, all while building a sustainable organization that will carry on the tenets of community for generations.

Peter Sanchez is CEO of the Atrisco Companies, and as an Atrisqueño, he is a proud New Mexican and caretaker of the land. Sanchez is passionate about maintaining the legacy of his ancestors and leaving a lasting impact in Albuquerque.

"We are a company of givers. A group of people whose intentions are to help the community. Each decision is made with philanthropic intentions to the community," he said.

Sanchez said he found it natural to collaborate with the UNM Anderson School of Management because of the three pillars. Driven by a commitment to benefit the community for generations and inspired by his own personal journey as an Anderson student, he founded the Atrisco Heritage Foundation Endowed Scholarship. This scholarship aims to support upcoming Anderson students in their pursuit of a better life through higher education, especially during challenging financial times.

"It really makes me feel good about the work we do at Atrisco when we know we are helping younger people find a better way of life through education," he said. "It was certainly my path and one I am grateful for. It means a lot to help create those pathways for others to find their life's purpose."

To learn more about how you can also impact your community through higher education, contact Melanie Hitchcock.