54th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2019


Pete Campos









     WHEREAS, in May 2018, James Borrego pushed through a barrier when the Charlotte hornets named him the first Hispanic full-time head coach in the national basketball association's seventy-two year history; and

     WHEREAS, James is the eleventh head coach in the history of the Michael Jordan-owned franchise; and

     WHEREAS, March is the final full month of the national basketball association's regular season, but it also marks the beginning of Éne-Bé-A, the league's annual celebration and recognition of Latin American heritage and culture; and

     WHEREAS, for James, it is an opportunity to reflect on his own background and the different backgrounds of other players as well; and

     WHEREAS, James' family is of Mexican descent and three generations removed from arriving in the United States; and

     WHEREAS, James was raised by a single mother, Lydia, in Albuquerque and is an Albuquerque academy graduate, where he led the academy to a pair of state championships; and

     WHEREAS, James earned a bachelor's degree in English and a master's degree in leadership studies from the university of San Diego; and

     WHEREAS, James has said that growing up in the southwest, he rarely dealt with any type of exclusion because of his background and did not feel like opportunities were limited because of it; and

     WHEREAS, James credits basketball with helping him connect with kids from other cultures; and

     WHEREAS, James played three seasons with the San Diego toreros and, during his senior season in 2000-2001, he was named to the west coast conference all-academic team; and

     WHEREAS, James began his coaching career with his alma mater as the assistant coach with the toreros from 2001 to 2003 before going to the national basketball association; and

     WHEREAS, prior to being named the head coach for the Charlotte hornets, James was the assistant coach of the San Antonio spurs under Gregg Popovich for three seasons; and

     WHEREAS, James began his fifteen years of experience in the national basketball association as a video coordinator for the spurs during the 2003-2004 season; and

     WHEREAS, James has also been an assistant coach with the New Orleans hornets and the Orlando magic; and

     WHEREAS, James served as the Orlando magic's interim head coach for the final thirty games of the 2014-2015 season before returning to the San Antonio spurs in June 2015; and

     WHEREAS, James has stated that he is confident in the coaching foundation he developed during his time in San Antonio, Orlando and New Orleans and is ready to get to work with his Charlotte team; and

     WHEREAS, James recognizes his role as a trailblazer and hopes that his story resonates with people of all cultures and backgrounds; and

     WHEREAS, James is living proof that, regardless of origin or ethnicity, anything is possible with the right combination of hard work and resiliency;

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that Albuquerque native James Borrego, head coach of the Charlotte hornets, be recognized and congratulated as the national basketball association's first Hispanic head coach; and

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this memorial be transmitted to James Borrego and Lydia Borrego.