GD Psych Services has a new location at 2200 Grande Blvd. Photo by Amy Byres.

GD Psych Services LLC

By Amy Byres / Observer staff writer

Stacey Goldstein-Dwyer, owner of GD Psych Services LLC, is an advocate for good mental health practices through the quarantine.

Goldstein-Dwyer began her business in Rio Rancho in 2016 after retiring from service as a captain in the U.S. Army, she said.

Navigating her business through COVID-19 has been a challenge, Goldstein-Dwyer said.

“We see many children, teenagers and families in addition to our adult clientele, and because of COVID-19, we had many cancellations,” she said. “Despite adapting to the need and providing HIPAA-compliant and secure video and phone options, it is almost impossible to have an effective therapy visit with a child or teenager via telehealth.”

This resulted in a reduction of business, Goldstein-Dwyer said. In addition, many patients who were not comfortable using telehealth or visiting face-to-face canceled their appointments.

Despite these challenges, the company is expanding and moving to a bigger space at 2200 Grande Blvd., she said. GD Psych Services expanded its work to include medication management via telehealth or in person.

“We consider ourselves survivors of this pandemic and will continue to grow our ability to serve those in need who live in the city of Rio Rancho and the state of New Mexico,” she said.

GD Psych Services is a one-stop shop for mental-health services, Goldstein-Dwyer said. For more information, call 218-6383 or visit its website at

Brew Lab 101 Beer and Cider Co. is in the shopping center at 3301 Southern Blvd. Photo by Amy Byres.

Brew Lab 101 Beer & Cider Co.

By Amy Byres / Observer staff writer

Since the COVID-19 closures have taken effect, revenues have been down for Brew Lab 101 Beer & Cider Co., said owner Scott Salvas.

He has missed having folks in his establishment at 3301 Southern Blvd.

“However, we adapted quickly, and our staff has been great and very flexible, so we will come out of this OK,” Salvas said.

Small businesses need the community’s support now more than ever, he said

“A lot of folks are hurting out there,” Salvas said.

Like its patrons, the brewery has to adjust to a new normal with COVID-safe practices.

“We will be the same great place folks have come to love, but we’ve added some innovations like canning to increase our options for beer to go,” he said. “We are also working on options to increase our service area, like putting in a backyard-type experience. This will allow us to serve many while still keeping everyone distanced.”

Salvas said customer safety is the brewery’s No. 1 priority.

Brew Lab 101 is still in takeout mode, as Salvas says, so its hours of operations vary. For the most updated information on hours, Google “Brew Lab 101” or check its website, Order takeout by calling 962-1587.

Harris Jewelers is fully operational at 909 36th Place, Ste. A, off Southern Boulevard. Photo by Amy Byres.

Harris Jewelers

By Amy Byres / Observer staff writer

Harris Jewelers has operated in Rio Rancho since 1945.

Co-owners Mark Guerin and Karen Fitzpatrick purchased the business in 1998.

Through the pandemic, the company did not furlough or lay off any of its staff. It obtained a loan from the Payment Protection Program, Guerin said.

He said challenges Harris Jewelers faced included preparing to open under proper guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the state and U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

“Nobody seemed to know for a long time what guidelines businesses were to open under,” he said.

In addition, shifting to online sales proved challenging with the company’s model being a personal experience with clients.

“Harris Jewelers does a lot of custom work and jewelry repair, which cannot be done online. The governor’s order, as we understood, we could not be in our store until May 1 or later,” he said. “Apparently by the governor’s actions, we were wrong. The vagueness of what is allowed and what is not has been a challenge.”

The store has grown into a 5,000-square-foot space, where it is easy to maintain social distancing. It is easier to control sanitation than in big-box stores, he said.

“Remember, shopping local feeds local families, supports local police and fire; shopping local supports the community,” he said.

Harris Jewelers is open at 909 36th Place, Ste. A.

“Harris Jewelers would like to thank the Observer for this opportunity,” Guerin. “Like your local jeweler, the Observer is your local paper, focusing on Rio Rancho and the surrounding communities.”

For more information about Harris Jewelers, visit or call 892-3841.

Diaz Landscaping Management has an office at 661 Quantum Road. Photo by Amy Byres.

Diaz Landscaping Management

By Amy Byres / Observer staff writer

Diaz Landscaping Management will expand its company despite challenges the pandemic has presented.

Owners James and Elaine Diaz founded Diaz Landscaping in 2009.

“Diaz Landscaping is looking forward to future growth, future expansion and bringing more jobs to Rio Rancho,” Elaine Diaz said.

The company has been fortunate and did not need to take out loans, but it has been challenging to hire employees, she said.

They are looking to hire office personnel and landscaping and irrigation specialists.

“Diaz Landscaping’s top priority is the safety of employees and customers through these challenging times,” Elaine Diaz said.

Employees maintain social distancing, wear masks and clean vehicles and equipment daily, she said.

Diaz has a message for the Rio Rancho community.

“I would just like to thank essential works and all those on the front line: the nurses the doctors, the grocery workers, the delivery workers, everyone that is contributing,” she said. “We are all in this together.”

For more information, visit Diaz Landscaping at 661 Quantum Road or call 433-1449.

The Rio Rancho Observer is on the corner of Quantum Road and NM 528. File photo.

Rio Rancho Observer

By Argen Duncan / Observer editor

The Rio Rancho Observer has existed since 1973, but working through this pandemic presented entirely new challenges.

Because Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham declared media outlets essential, we never stopped reporting. We’re proud to tell the stories of the local effects of the pandemic, the community pulling together and other news.

We’ve always covered good news, and we made it even more of a priority after the pandemic hit, hoping to lift our neighbors’ spirits.

To help “flatten the curve,” we worked from home when we could. We conducted interviews by phone and watched governmental meetings online, but when we couldn’t do remote coverage, we showed up in person. We closed the office except by appointment for nearly two months.

With other businesses having less revenue, we did, too, because fewer of them could buy advertisements. That meant smaller papers.

Another challenge has been finding disinfectant spray and wipes, although we’ve been scraping by.

Now, we’re increasing time in the office.

With only three of us and work spaces already separated, we’re able to easily maintain healthy distancing. We wear face coverings and aim to keep our distance when we help walk-in customers or go out in the community, although we don’t demand that other we meet wear masks or stay 6 feet from each other. We’re reporters, not enforcers.

Going forward, we’ll keep following state and company health guidelines among our staff, and we’ll keep telling your stories. The news keeps going, and so do we.

Note: Check out the Observer next week for information and perspectives from local nonprofits on handling the pandemic.