Founders of First Serve – New Mexico (Founded 2003)

  • Richard A Brenner
  • Eleanor P Brenner


  • Angelique Cook Lowry, President
  • Karen Herhahn, Vice President
  • Scott Fuqua, Treasurer
  • Mary C. Ross, Secretary

Members of the Board

  • Kimberley Sheffield
  • Mary Catherine Mathews
  • Melanie Peters Thorne
  • Jennifer Trujillo
  • Staci Stevens

Eleanor P Brenner and her husband Richard Brenner co-founded First Serve – New Mexico in 2003 to help create an educated, enthusiastic, involved future populace. In addition to having been a tennis family, they wanted the children of New Mexico to learn a sport that would give them great enjoyment and competition—as well as a sport they could play for life.

Eleanor has successfully translated her business acumen to the nonprofit world and set a standard for results-based accountability that has driven First Serve – New Mexico to excellence. Since the beginning, Eleanor has created a culture of a First Serve – New Mexico family that cares deeply for all of its children. In turn, our students (children) are not only involved in their life skills, academics, and tennis, but as importantly have generated life-long friendships.

Angelique Cook-Lowry is a Doctor of Oriental Medicine (DOM) with 32 years of experience.  Skills she brings to FSNM include business, fund-raising, communications and people skills. In addition to serving on the Board of Trustees for FSNM, Angelique is a Vice-President.

Karen Bedwell Herhahn has followed a long pathway to education. The daughter of a university professor, she has strived for the disadvantaged to have opportunities she was given in the world of education. For First Serve – New Mexico, she has provided educational awareness to the disadvantaged, fundraising, and guidance in the business world. Karen also serves as a member of the External Advisory Board in the College of Business for Southern Illinois University.

Scott Fuqua is a native New Mexican who has served on the First Serve – New Mexico board for nine years. He is an attorney in Santa Fe, working in private practice after seven years in the Attorney General’s Office.

Mary Caslin Ross is a trustee of The Gilder Lehrman Institute and a member of the grants committee for the Barker Welfare Foundation.  She is a visiting senior fellow with The New Criterion and Classroom Inc. Mary spent many years working with the Gilder Lehrman Institute, Nobel Laureate Vernon Smith where she created IFREE, and as Executive Director of the Bodman/Achelis Foundations.

Members of the Board

Mary Catherine Mathews is a New Orleans native who grew up in Texas. She played tennis at Big Spring High School and at Trinity University in San Antonio where she graduated in 1983. Mary Catherine was a television anchor and reporter in Midland, Texas for several years before moving to New York City where she worked at WCBS-TV and WABC-TV. She and her husband, Bill Bennett returned to Midland where they had two daughters, Anna and Sophie. The family moved to Santa Fe in 2004 and Mary Catherine began playing competitive tennis at clubs around town. Anna and Sophie (now at NYU and Tulane University) both worked for First Serve during their years at Santa Fe Prep.

Melanie Peters Thorne has been a real estate professional for over 40 years with her own firm in Santa Fe; Melanie Peters and Associates Inc. Experience she brings to First Serve – New Mexico includes business, team building, and event planning.

Jennifer Trujillo was born and raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She joined the First Serve – New Mexico Board in April of 2018. Jennifer and her husband of 20 years are currently raising three amazing daughters, all who have been part of the First Serve – New Mexico Program. In 1998, she graduated from the University of New Mexico with a BA in Psychology, and in 2000, she earned her Masters Degree in Social Work from New Mexico Highlands University. Jennifer currently works for the Santa Fe Public Schools as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

Staci Stevens is a third generation Northern New Mexican. She graduated from Santa Fe High and the College of Santa Fe with a B.A. in Business Management and Conservation Studies. Staci has 20 years’ experience organizing environmental and social justice advocacy campaigns for nonprofit organizations at a state and national level with a specialization in strategic communications. Staci and her husband David have developed a love for tennis, learning to play along with their two daughters who both participate in First Serve — New Mexico.