October 18, 2013
(Hobbs – Oct 15) University of the Southwest’s Alumni Association has named recipients for its annual alumni awards. Awards will be presented during the Alumni Chapel Service, at 11 a.m., on Wednesday, Oct 23, in the Mabee Southwest Heritage Center Theater on the USW campus. The Alumni Chapel Service will feature USW alum, Dr. Elyn Palmer, as the guest speaker.
Palmer earned her Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in English in 1996 and her Master of Science in Education with an emphasis in mental health counseling in 2003. She went on to earn her PhD in higher education administration from Texas Tech University and is currently employed as a full-time faculty member at USW.
Barbara Treadwell Sena of Hobbs has been selected to receive the Alumni Association’s most prestigious award, the Alumna of the Year. Recipients of this award have distinguished themselves through personal or professional achievement. Recipients recognize exceptional service to the community, and demonstrate the values of a USW education: servant leadership, individual faith, responsibility, and initiative.
Sena is a 1990 graduate of USW, earning her Bachelor of Science degree in Education. In 1989 and in 1990, Sena was named to the “Who’s Who for America’s Colleges and Universities.” In 1990, she was awarded the USW Contributions to Theater Award and in 2004, she was named to the “Who’s Who for American Teachers.” Sena previously served on the USW Alumni Board and as a Chaplain at Lea Regional Medical Center.
Sena works alongside her husband, Fabian Sena, as a Senior Pastor and teacher at Victory Center (Centro Victoria) and King’s Gate Church in Hobbs, where she leads a mentorship and discipleship program for girls and women. Sena and her husband have been pastors and mentors for 39 years. She founded Victory Center Christian Academy in 1995, which later expanded to include a preschool and daycare, where she served an administrator, principal, teacher and drama coach. She previously worked as a special education teacher and fourth grade teacher at Jefferson Elementary in Hobbs. Sena is currently writing and publishing a series of children’s books called “Faith Heroes.” Mama was Queen, the first book in this series, is the story of Queen Esther told from the perspective of her son.
Sena and her husband have three grown children, Matthew, Jonathan and Elaine, and daughter-in-law, Jennifer. The entire family serves in fulltime ministry in Hobbs.
Amber Miller will be named as the 2013Distinguished Young Alumna. This award is presented to a young alumnus whose achievements in his or her profession or chosen field and service to the community set a standard of excellence worthy of recognition. Miller received her Bachelor of Business Administration from USW in 2008, and completed her Master of Business Administration in 2012.
Miller is currently employed at Gentiva Hospice, where she is the marketing director. She is Executive Director of Light of Lea County, is on the board of United Way and volunteers at Isaiah’s Kitchen. She lives by the scripture “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” – Colossians 3:23.
At 27, Miller has two children, 4 and 7, and is married to her high school sweetheart. Miller was raised by a single mother, who instilled in her the desire for education, the passion for a career and the heart for servant leadership.