Robby Ortiz


Robby Ortiz has taken his English degree from New Mexico to the other side of the world.

He graduated Summa Cum Laude from UNM in 2010 with a BA in English and Philosophy. Drs. Jesse Aleman and Russel Goodman oversaw his undergraduate thesis, "Why the Book Can Never Be Better than the Movie," which explored the way the subject interacts with different mediums of storytelling and the personal involvement in the creation of not only meaning but the narrative itself. Ortiz began this project under Dr. Hector Torres, who passed away that same semester; along with Dr. Torres’s other students, Ortiz raised funds to commemorate Dr. Torres at the National Hispanic Cultural Center and hold a memorial. He continues to immensely value the compassion Dr. Torres demonstrated in his life.

During his time at UNM, Ortiz also studied in the University Honors Program and worked as Editor-in-Chief of Scribendi Magazine. After graduating and marrying fellow alum Samantha, Ortiz relocated to San Antonio, Texas, where he served on the Teach for America Corps for three years, teaching English on the south side and winning a community project grant from the San Antonio Spurs.

Following Ortiz’s service with Teach for America, he and his wife moved to Sydney, Australia, where they received diplomas in ministry and leadership from the Hillsong International Leadership College and had two children. Ortiz is currently a full-time pastor for Hillsong Church, responding to crises and engaging with the most vulnerable people in the community.

Ortiz is currently pursuing graduate-level work in professional supervision, writing for the Good Christian Co. blog and podcast, and drafting two books on Christian living and one of poetry. In reflecting on his undergraduate experience from a country where the food isn’t very spicy, though, he can say that he still desperately misses New Mexico’s abundant green chile.

Department of English Language and Literature
Humanities Building, Second Floor
MSC03 2170
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001

Phone: (505) 277-6347
Fax: (505) 277-0021