Officials at NyE Communities Coalition have welcomed a new coalition manager.
Heidi Labastida brings years of experience to her new position.
She replaces the coalition’s main grant writer, Laura Oslund, who accepted a similar position in Elko, Nevada in February.
Labastida said this week, she always wanted to perform public service.
Prior to her position with the coalition, she worked at Pahrump’s No To Abuse agency as a parent facilitator, assisting with parenting classes in the community.
“My background has always been in community work and since the age of 13, I have always been engaged in my community,” she said. “I started out as a volunteer with different food banks to help with feeding the homeless and that’s when I found out what I wanted to do as a career.”
Labastida, a mother of three, moved to Pahrump with her husband from Las Vegas several years back.
She noted her fondness for Nevada’s rural towns as she anticipates quite a bit of travel as the coalition manager.
“I really love my new position,” she said. “Being a city girl, living in a rural town such as Pahrump is very different. I’ll be traveling out to Tonopah and other areas. Working in rural Nevada is very different from larger cities and I have actually gotten to love working in rural Nevada.”
Additionally, Labastida noted she’s looking forward to developing the skills essential to writing grants, which is one of the coalition’s main funding sources.
“My official start date was March 1st of this year and I am taking over a lot of what Laura Oslund used to do here,” she said.
“Nobody can replace Laura because she did so much for the coalition. I will also be working with different events and projects, especially helping out with Safe Schools and Healthy Students. Right now, I am learning to write grants because it’s a big interest of mine and I’m glad I’ll be getting into that area as well.”
The coalition manager also noted the warmth she and her family received from the community following her move to Pahrump roughly four years ago.
“This community has been very accepting and very loving,” she said.
“When there’s something that somebody needs, people in this community don’t hesitate to jump in and help out. Amargosa Valley is also a very embracing town. I’m so glad this job has given me the opportunity to work in rural areas of the state.”
Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter: @pvtimes