Maria D. Chavez

Maria D. Chavez, EdD, is the Founder and Former Executive Director of the Family Development Program at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Currently retired. Dr. Chavez is a Board Member of ZERO TO THREE.

Maria D. Chavez

Founder and Former Executive Director, Family Development Program at the University of New Mexico

Contributions to the Field

Dr. Chavez is a nationally acclaimed authority on bilingual, multicultural education and on creating effective family support systems in communities. Prior to her retirement, Dr. Chavez established and managed the Office of Community Planning, Training and Research & Evaluation for New Mexico’s Children, Youth and Family Department.


  • Board Member, ZERO TO THREE
  • Board Member and Past Secretary of the Parents as Teachers National Center
  • Past Board Member of the Pampers Parenting Institute
  • Past President of Las Mujeres
  • Past President of the New Mexico Bilingual Association.

Current Research

Applying early childhood curricula within an Alzheimer nursing care setting.

Recent Honors/Awards/Recognition/Books Published

New Mexico Women’s Hall of Fame recipient, 1996; Governor’s Award for Outstanding New Mexico Women, 1996; Honored as one of three outstanding Early Childhood Programs in the Nation by the National Commission on Children, 1993; Brindis a la Mujer Hispana for Outstanding Community Service, 1990; National Association for Bilingual Education Outstanding Dissertations, 1989.