Keres, an Albuquerque based consulting firm that provides professional services for tribal communities, on April 26 announced a new partnership with country music recording artist Chevel Shepherd.
Shepherd, a New Mexican native, was also the winner of the 15th season of NBC's 'The Voice'. The partnership is meant to bring awareness to Keres' No More New Mexico young adult program, which provides youth in the state with education and resources to live tobacco free. The program is funded by the New Mexico Department of Health Tobacco Use Prevention and Control Program, according to a news release.
“It was important for us to find an authentic ally for this work,” said Lesley Meyer, project manager of the No More NM Program. “Chevel is from New Mexico, a member of the young adult audience we strive to support and a great advocate for healthy living.”
The partnership between Keres and Shepherd has already produced two public service announcement projects. One was a collaborative effort with Media Matched Advertising, Meyer said. Another was a virtual trivia night on April 29 that included prizes and raffles, as well as live performances from Shepherd.
“As a small business based in Albuquerque, we are humbled to be aligned with a successful individual as Ms. Shepherd,” said Tim Chavez, president and CEO of Keres. “We look forward to the continued partnership and impact we can have supporting the health of New Mexicans with her on our team.”
According to the No More NM program website, the tobacco industry spends roughly over $37.1 million in marketing efforts in New Mexico.
Along with the creation of the program, Keres has additional contracts with State of New Mexico in tobacco prevention, and supports secondhand smoke protections in Native American communities with the New Mexico Department of Health Tobacco Use Prevention and Control Program. The firm is also involved with a a second statewide education project with the New Mexico Indian Affairs Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program, according to the news release. Keres ranked third on Business First's list of native-owned businesses with a total 2020 revenue in New Mexico of $4.50 million.