Marking NM’s Historic Women: María Gutiérrez Spencer

Photo Credit:

María Gutiérrez Spencer (1919-1992) “Advocate for Social Justice”

Punished for not speaking English in school, María Gutiérrez Spencer devoted her life to validating the Indo-Hispano experience. A graduate of University of California, Berkeley and New Mexico State University, she pioneered bilingual and bicultural education in New Mexico, founding BOLD: Bicultural Orientation and Language Development in Silver City. Maria battled cancer for 50 years, but traveled worldwide to train teachers. She was honored by the Wonder Woman Foundation with Rosa Parks in 1981.

Roadside Marker Location: Doña Ana County, Las Cruces, NM Highway 138

You can view a county by county list of the Historic Women Mile Markers in this pdf.

You can view a map of the Historic Women Mile Markers at

March is Women’s History Month. During this month we’ll be highlighting some of the women featured on New Mexico’s Historic Women Roadside Markers. Text provided by our colleagues at New Mexico Historic Preservation Division