Larryl’s experience as a newspaper reporter (for publications such as the Los Angeles Times and the Sacramento Bee), independent filmmaker, photographer, and graphic designer led him to launch Albuquerque The Magazine in April 2004. A journalism graduate of New Mexico State University, Larryl is proudest of the fact that ATM is able to show readers every month the true greatness of Albuquerque—through the eyes of a staff who loves the city. Though he still has to blink back tears every time he watches Forrest Gump, Larryl also has a dark side: he’s banned from renting at Budget Rent-A-Car, and he’s a huge “Sopranos” fan. He also claims he’ll buy lunch for anyone who can beat him at the ’80s video arcade game, “Stargate.”
Associate publisher Gena LaCross’ passion for the magazine runs deep—she joined ATM just after the first issue hit newsstands. Since, Gena has overseen the rapid growth of the mag, which has boomed in page count, advertisers, and revenue. Until the fall of 2010, this Belen native and confessed foodie had always dreamed of going to Paris. That fairytale came true when she and her husband escaped on a European getaway for their honeymoon. Gena has the most fantastic collection of whiskey we’ve ever seen, and can be seen around town with her teacup Yorkshire Terrier, Buckley, peeking out of her purse.
John is Albuquerque the Magazine’s resident Patriots and Red Sox fan. Oh yeah, he also handles human resources and accounting. He was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, home of Rocky Marciano, and moved to New Mexico in the 1970’s when his father was transferred to Los Alamos. He received a degree in accounting and business administration from New Mexico State University but his real loves are golf and classic cars. John’s garage currently holds a ’66 Ford Mustang GT, a 2008 Shelby GT 500 Roadster and a 1961 Canvas Rollback Volkswagen Bug (his high school car). As a golfer, John has played some of the top courses in the country, even participating in some PGA and LPGA Pro-Am events. Though he has swung a club at Riviera in Pacific Palisades, Pebble Beach, Spyglass, Congressional, and Monterrey Peninsula, his bucket list course still eludes him: Augusta. His favorite part of working at ATM is “the quality of the people who are putting it together. It’s a very talented group of people.”
Rose Garcia grew up in Bloomfield, the youngest of three older sisters and an older brother. She came to Albuquerque to attend UNM for her B.A. in Mass Communications and Spanish and she has recently completed her MBA through NM Highlands University. A true New Mexican, she loves her green chile stew, along with pasta and Chinese food. When she’s not mastering communications at ATM, you can find her watching horrible TV shows, planning vacations, and going on adventures in the woods with her husband Jeremy. Her outdoor adventures include cowering from birds (as they creep her out) and fishing. When she catches one however; she won’t touch it or eat it (that’s for her husband to do). Rose has two adorable and spoiled basset hounds, Jasmine and Roxie that pretty much rule the house.
Taylor is an Albuquerque native and says, “I’m in love with my city.” He has a Bachelor’s Degree from UNM with a double major in Media Arts and History. After college he married the love of his life, Rosemary, and they spent a year in Pagosa Springs, Colorado skiing Wolf Creek before Albuquerque pulled them back in. Taylor took a job implementing energy efficiency programs for local energy utilities… he was bored. After a ski accident broke his back, he found himself in a neck brace and recliner for four months. He considers himself very lucky. He did not suffer permanent damage and spent the time creating an online magazine, The Inside Mag. After getting out of the chair, he took a new job with the sports desk at The Albuquerque Journal. Eventually, he became a beat reporter for the business desk before moving to ATM. His favorite thing to do is play with his two beautiful little boys, Milo and Rhys and his pug, Puddles.
A self-described “big ol’ nerd,” creative director Lise Watkins loves to read and watch fantasy and sci-fi. She used the least common workout—roller derby (yes, roller derby)—to lose baby weight after giving birth to her adorable daughter. Lise herself was born in the middle of Death Valley, in the middle of the summer, in the back of a car (it’s a long story, but obviously, in the end, things worked out OK). After growing up in Nevada and attending college in San Francisco, Lise started working in print design and photography. She spends her time at the magazine putting together a famous monthly puzzle–a combination of copy, ads, and photographs—which is lovingly known by many as Albuquerque The Magazine.
Don has shot photos for the magazine since the very beginning, while he was still studying for his BFA in photography from UNM. Now, as a seasoned photographer and published author of a book about his journey through the Navajo Nation, One Nation One Year, Don has taken photos all over the country. When he’s not behind the lens, Don is ruling rodeos, riding horses throughout the Southwest—but admits he does have a tamer side that involves playing the piano, collecting Hot Wheels, and watching films. But don’t be fooled–Don is a proud owner of a backyard chicken coop and vegetable garden, and has quite the affinity for the BBC show “Top Gear” (mostly just The Stig).
Advertising manager Justin Bixler was born in Albuquerque but called Colorado and Northern California home before making his way back to the Duke City, where he was part of the first graduating class at Rio Rancho High School. Justin is a self-taught designer, who says his biggest (and best) critic is his wife, Victoria (although he says she finds it odd that he organizes his shirts and shoes by color in their closet). If you find Justin a little shy at first, it only takes a little prodding to get him to come out of his shell—he reports that his favorite food is whatever is in his mouth at the very moment you ask him. Justin loves photography, being outdoors, and spending time with his family, who has always encouraged him to chase his dreams.
Born and raised in Albuquerque, staff writer Galen sharpened his writing chops by freelancing throughout his college years, and for several years thereafter–which eventually brought him to the magazine. A lover of B-rated rubber monster movies, lucha libre, card, board, and video games, swing dancing, and tea, Galen professes to “work primarily to support a crippling tabletop RPG addiction.” In terms of long-term planning, Galen someday aspires to be Mick Foley, or, failing that, a novelist. When not busy penning many of the stories to be found in the magazine, Galen spends his time out and about with the love of his life, Amy, or annoying their tortoiseshell calico, Cannoli.
The second oldest of four siblings, graphic designer McKenna Grier attended West Texas A&M University after graduating from La Cueva High School. The collector of 50’s dresses finds herself shifting between listening to oldies in the morning and 80s classics in the afternoon. Her one true love—besides her husband—is Disney. She’s lost track of how many times she’s been to her happy place but is always looking for new places to adventure to. Her solution to any mood is Frito Lay sunflower seeds and a coke.
Lindsay is Albuquerque the Magazine’s jack-of-all-trades, splitting her time between the sales team and the design team. Unlike many jack-of-all-trades types, Lindsay is amazingly talented at both. This former preschool music and art teacher has an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Multicultural education and a Bachelor’s Degree from Arizona State University in Graphic Information Technology. Lindsay is also a coffee connoisseur who “makes a mean cappuccino” and loves The Beatles. She and her husband are avid travelers who have visited 16 different countries and 42 different U.S. States. She is a musician who plays flute and piano and has a love for photography. She has performed and toured with international art sensations, ArtRAGEous and the 3 Painters, where she was a professional speed painter, singer and dancer.
Phil traded in his surfboard for a pair of alpine skis when he moved from Orange County, Calif. to Albuquerque in 1988. He earned a BBA with an emphasis in marketing from UNM and spent 13 years in the beverage industry before entering the world of advertising. He and his wife, Tracy, have two dogs and a cat. Phil loves to cook, and is an avid music collector (he has more than 400 vinyl albums and some 9,000 songs on his iPod). He listens to everything from rock to jazz to punk to blues—and has an insane knowledge for trivia, particularly when it comes to music or sports. Really—just try him.
If ever there was an ATM cheerleader, senior advertising executive Megan Life is it, as our token former Lobo cheerleader. After moving to Albuquerque in 2002 from Silver City, NM, Megan attended UNM and graduated with a degree in mass communications with an emphasis on advertising. This mom of two little boys has fallen in love with the city’s weather, nightlife, and restaurant scene. A self-proclaimed reality TV junkie, Megan’s passions lie in shopping, reading, and spending time with her family, friends, and her two crazy little boys and husband. She also regularly channels her inner cheerleader as a huge fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Kat is one of our best salespeople. She has lived in New Mexico her entire life and was born in Santa Fe, where she attended Santa Fe High School. After high school, she moved to Albuquerque to attend art school and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Illustration, and Associates Degrees in Advertising and Marketing, and Graphic Design. She began working at ATM right out of college. Though Kat claims to “have mastered the art of awkwardness” she is exceptionally confident and approachable. Kat loves to read and learn and says she gets “a weird satisfaction from learning something new.” She also loves popcorn with an unnatural zeal and adores her four-pound, 12-year-old Chihuahua, Honey. Kat is an avid traveler whose favorite trip may be her journey to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Brenda is a rock star salesperson for Albuquerque the Magazine. She is a natural ginger and warns, “Yes. I will steal your soul. Watch out.” Born in Palm Springs, California, Brenda attended Palm Springs Highs School before getting her Bachelor’s Degree in Art from the University of California Riverside. She moved to Albuquerque in 2015 with Baron, her 30-pound Maine Coon cat and only the possessions that she could fit in her car. Brenda says, “It was the scariest, biggest and best decision I’ve ever made. New Mexico is where I feel the most at home and my life has flourished since moving here.” She is an avid painter who prefers acrylic on canvas. She loves loud music, especially The Dirty Heads and Kevin Gates. Her favorite thing about working at ATM is getting to connect with her adopted community.
ATM’s Advertising Coordinator Emily Puckett describes her job as herding cats. Which is easy for the cat mom of two (Little and Dennis) to say as she wrangles all the pieces of the magazine to flow cohesively together. After graduating from the University of New Mexico’s Anderson School of Management with a Business Administration degree in 2016, she interned at Sandia National Laboratories. (We’ve asked for the details, but she’s sworn to secrecy.) The brunch queen enjoys sweet and savory dishes over a Bloody Mary then vintage shopping and sunset skating on her Razor scooter. Between cooking and finding the perfect beer or wine to pair with dinner, she and her husband, Christian can be found watching “Seinfeld” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”
Denise is a relative newcomer to Albuquerque The Magazine, starting here in July 2015. This native of Albuquerque went to Eldorado High School and the University of New Mexico, where she earned a degree in Accounting. She used that degree for almost 25 years at Plateau Oil Company and then CVI Laser Corporation. When the time came to get another job, she decided to do something more fun than accounting—well THAT narrowed down the choices, haha!—and here she is at our reception desk! Denise, her husband Michael and daughter Adrienne love to travel. They have a long list of places they have been, but another of places they still want to go! While at home, they read, cook and travel a lot around the state, enjoying all the spectacular sights of New Mexico.