New Mexico – Today, the Democratic Party of New Mexico welcomed news that the Democrats in the legislature selected their leadership teams. These announcements come after the New Mexico House moved from Republican majority to a Democratic majority and Democrats gained two seats in the New Mexico Senate.
N.M. Senate Democrats elected Senator Peter Wirth to lead the New Mexico Senate as Majority Leader and N.M. Representative Brian Egolf was nominated to lead the New Mexico House as Speaker; his nomination will go to a vote during the legislative session.
“After a hard fought election, we’re pleased to have strong and capable legislators leading Democrats in the legislature,” said Debra Haaland, Chairwoman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “This election New Mexicans said loud and clear that they would rather have leaders who will work to build opportunity for all New Mexicans, instead of legislative members that solely push the failed Republican economic agenda of an ineffective governor. We’re confident that this new leadership team will ensure all New Mexicans have a chance to get and stay ahead.”
Also part of the Democratic leadership in the New Mexico House are Representative Sheryl Williams Stapleton (D-Albuquerque) elected majority floor leader, Representative Doreen Gallegos (D-Las Cruces) elected majority whip and Representative D. Wonda Johnson (D-Gallup) elected Democratic caucus chair.
In the senate, Democrats re-elected Senator Michael Padilla (D-Albuquerque) as majority whip and Senator Jacob Candelaria (D-Albuquerque) as caucus chair. Senator Mary Kay Papen (D-Las Cruces) was nominated as Senate president pro tem, and will be voted on by the Senate Chamber during the legislative session.
Background on N.M. Senator Peter Wirth
Senator Peter Wirth (D-Santa Fe) is a second term State Senator. He spent four years as a Representative in the State House from 2004 through 2008 replacing Max Coll who retired from the seat.
During his twelve years in the legislature, four in the state House and seven in the state Senate, Peter carried a variety of legislation signed by Governor Bill Richardson and Governor Susana Martinez. Some of Peter’s successful legislation include laws to ban texting while driving, to expand the sustainable building tax credit, to allow local governments to enact water conservation ordinances and to limit the use of domestic wells in subdivisions.
Prior to his service in the legislature, Peter was actively involved in the Santa Fe community. He served on a number of boards including the St. Vincent Hospital Foundation from 1991 to 2000, the Santa Fe Children’s Museum from 2000 to 2004 where he was board chair for two years, the Historic Santa Fe Foundation from 1991 to 1995 where he returned to serve as board president from 1997 to 2003. Since 2000 Peter has been a member of Rotary International.
Background on N.M. Representative Brian Egolf
Representative Brian Egolf was elected to the New Mexico House of Representatives in 2008 and is serving his fourth term in the New Mexico Legislature representing House District 47 in Santa Fe. Representative Egolf leads the caucus in standing up for opportunity and security for New Mexico’s working families.
In his second term, Representative Egolf became Chairman of the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee. In 2014, the Democratic Caucus elected Brian Democratic Leader. During his tenure, Brian has been a champion for equality, transparency, and justice.