henson lou and mary rsLou and Mary Henson will be honored with New Mexico State University’s Presidential Medallion Jan. 16. (Courtesy photo)WRITER: Jane Moorman, 505-249-0527, jmoorman@nmsu.edu

New Mexico State University will award the 2018 Presidential Medallion to Lou and Mary Henson during the spring convocation ceremony Tuesday, Jan. 16, at the Atkinson Recital Hall.

The award recognizes outstanding service given to the university beyond an individual's time as an employee.

"Lou and Mary Henson have done so much for our university and so much for our community," NMSU Chancellor Garrey Carruthers said. "In addition to his outstanding career, Coach Henson has helped with the Boys and Girls Club and has always been willing to help with other community efforts. Mary Henson played a key role in the NMSU Aggies are Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign. These two are outstanding members of our community and two of the most prominent individuals to ever walk our campus."

Lou Henson, an NMSU alumni, is noted for his 779 career basketball victories, making him one of the most successful coaches in Division I history. During his career, which spanned more than four decades, he led two programs to the NCAA Final Four – NMSU in 1970 and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1989. His teams have made 19 NCAA appearances and four NIT appearances.

He is also one of only four NCAA coaches to have amassed at least 200 total wins at two institutions. Both NMSU and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have honored the coach by naming their basketball arena hardwood floors "Lou Henson Court."

Henson was selected as a member of the National College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015. In 2005, Lou and Mary were awarded honorary doctorates from NMSU.

Mary Henson first met her husband during his student days at New Mexico State in the 1950s. Throughout their more than 60-year marriage, she has been his strongest supporter and cheerleader, experiencing the NCAA tournaments and Final Four appearances with him, often cheering from the sidelines with their children or grandchildren in tow.

Mary always involved herself in her husband's career, including hosting pre-game receptions for alumni, boosters or new recruits, while engaging in various community activities.

While in Las Cruces, she served as an active board member for the NMSU President's Associates, helping to raise money for student scholarships. One of her philanthropic efforts was to help complete projects for NMSU's Children's Village.

The Hensons, as a team, have been among NMSU's most active supporters on and off the court. Their commitment to excellence in academics and athletics was demonstrated with the establishment of the Lou and Mary Henson Endowed Scholarship in honor of their late son, Lou Jr. The fund is designed to support deserving student-athletes at NMSU.

Coach Henson earned his bachelor's degree in secondary education and his master's in education administration, both from NMSU. He lettered in basketball for the New Mexico A&M Aggies from 1953-1955.

Prior to coaching at the college level, Henson coached at Las Cruces High School where he led his varsity teams to state championships in 1959, 1960 and 1961.

After four years at Hardin-Simmons University, Henson returned to his alma mater in 1966 to coach the Aggies for nine seasons. In 1975 he left New Mexico for the Illinois position, which he held until 1996.

In 1997, Henson returned to NMSU as interim head coach. He wanted to donate his time, but was told that state law didn't allow him to coach for free. He finally accepted a nominal salary of $1 per month. After a successful season, he became the permanent coach until the 2004-2005 season when he retired.

The couple will be unable to attend the convocation ceremony due to Lou's medical appointments out of state.

Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates

Welcome to Three Times Weekly Updates! You will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.
You can unsubscribe anytime. We never share or rent your email to anyone.

Fire Alerts

Editor's Note

Those new to providing news releases to the Beat are asked to please check out submission guidelines at http://www.grantcountybeat.com/about/submissions They are for your information to make life easier on the readers, as well as the editor.

Welcome to our new version of classified ads.  We invite you our readers to post your own classifieds, which are available for viewing 24/7 and are very reasonable in price. Right now you'll see a classified for mobile home lots for rent.

We have received complaints about large images blocking parts of other articles. If you encounter this problem, click on the title of the article you want to read and it will take you to that article's page, which shows only that article without any intruders. It's a software problem, not easily fixable, other than showing fewer articles per summary page. If you are a frequent visitor, you might not mind fewer articles per page, but if you only come once in a while, you likely want to see more articles to browse. Write me at editor@grantcountybeat.com to let me know your feelings on this issue. 

Because you are an esteemed member of The Grant County Beat readership, be assured that we at the Beat continue to do everything we can to be in full compliance with GDPR and pertinent US law, so that the information you have chosen to give to us cannot be compromised. 

The Beat continues to bring you new columnists.Recent additions  include one about end of life options, Compassionate Care.

The Beat has a column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.

The Beat totally appreciates its readers and subscribers!  


All articles and photos indicated by a byline are copyrighted to the author or photographer. You may not use any information found within the articles without asking permission AND giving attribution to the source. Photos can be requested and may incur a nominal fee for use personally or commercially.

Don't forget to tell advertisers that you saw their ad on the Beat.

Feel free to notify editor@grantcountybeat.com, if you notice any problems on the site. Your convenience is my desire for the Beat.

If you subscribe to the Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates option on the left side of this page, you will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.

It's really easy to check to see if there's a classified ad. Just click on Classifieds in the blue menu and the page will open letting you know if there is a classified ad. Remember that your buying classified ads gives you a wide readership, as well as supporting the Beat. Post YOURS for quick results!

Note that if an article does not have a byline, it was sent to the Beat and written by someone not affiliated with the Beat

Consider the Beat your DAILY newspaper for up-to-date information about Grant County. It's at your fingertips! One Click to Local News.

Thanks for your support for and your readership of Grant County's online news source—www.grantcountybeat.com