JOHN H. DENDAHL 75, passed away Nov. 9, 2013 in Denver, CO following complications from chemotherapy treatment for leukemia. John was born Sept. 28, 1938 in Santa Fe, NM and lived there for most of his 75 years. In 2007, he moved to Littleton, CO to be closer to family living in the area. John graduated from Santa Fe High School in 1957, and went on to graduate from the University of Colorado (CU) in 1961 with degrees in Electrical Engineering and Business Administration. While attending CU, he led two NCAA champion skiing teams, won three individual NCAA titles and was a member of the U.S. ski team at the 1960 Winter Olympics in Squaw Valley. He was inducted into the University of Colorado Athletic Hall of Fame and the New Mexico Ski Hall of Fame. John had a long and distinguished business and political career. He held senior leadership positions in several companies including CEO of Eberline Instrument Corporation, Vice President of Thermo Electron Corporation, and President of The First National Bank of Santa Fe. He strongly believed in the importance of public service. In 1987, he was appointed to the State Investment Council for New Mexico, and soon after became the state's Secretary of Economic Development and Tourism. In 1994, John was elected as the Republican Party Chairman for New Mexico, a position he held until 2003. John also ran for Governor of New Mexico in 1994 and 2006. He was active on many charitable boards over the years including the Sangre de Cristo Girl Scout Council, New Mexico Association of Commerce and Industry, The Santa Fe Opera, Santa Fe Preparatory School, Mountain States Legal Foundation, and St. John's College, serving as board chair of the last two organizations for several years. John supported his principled economic and political views with many editorial letters and guest columns in local and national publications over the years. John dearly loved his family and his Old English Sheepdog, Lincoln. He was passionate about the outdoors and was actively skiing, hiking and golfing until shortly before his death. John is preceded in death by parents, John D. Dendahl and Eleanor Hoge Dendahl, and sisters, Karen Oppenheimer and Barbara Glancy. He is survived by his wife, Jackie Tumbarella; five daughters, Debra (Fred) Hadley, Katherine Dendahl, Lisa (Rusty) West, Ellie Dendahl (Jeff) Thurston, and Karen Dendahl (Cooper Millard); and four grandchildren, Anderson Hadley, Katrina Hadley, Autumn West and Sophia West. He also had two step-children, Laura Hanson and Tim McKinley, and seven step-grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at St. John's College in Santa Fe, New Mexico on Friday, November 29th at 2:00 PM. Donations in John's memory may be made to the Mountain States Legal Foundation ( or the Santa Fe campus of St. John's College (
Published in Santa Fe New Mexican on Jan. 1, 1900