House Dems Select Santa Fe Native As Speaker
Submitted by Carol A. Clark
House Democrats Name New Speaker & Leaders
SANTA FE – Members of the New Mexico House Democratic Caucus selected their leadership for the 53rd Legislature, which will convene Jan. 18 2017.
House Democrats selected their choice for Speaker of the House, and elected the House Majority Leader, House Majority Whip, and House Majority Caucus Chair:
Speaker of the House – Rep. Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe). Egolf, a Santa Fe native is entering his fifth term in the New Mexico House of Representatives, and has served as House Minority Leader for the past two years. He was previously Chair of the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
“I am humbled and honored to have the support of the new House Majority to lead our work with the House, Senate and the Governor for a more secure future for New Mexicans,” Egolf said. “Our campaign for the House focused on the need to create jobs and to grow our economy – and that remains our focus. I feel confident that we can achieve some good results for the state, by increasing our minimum wage, working with higher education for workforce training, and leveraging the local economic development act. New Mexico is at a crossroads – although we are facing serious economic threats to our state, we have many strengths in our natural resources, our culture, our families, and more. Together we can move our state forward.”
House Majority Leader – Rep. Sheryl Williams Stapleton (D-Albuquerque). She will be the first African American to serve as House Majority Leader in New Mexico. Williams Stapleton has served in the New Mexico House since 1995 and has previously served as House Majority Whip and House Minority Whip.
“I am honored to have been elected by the House Democratic Caucus as House Majority Leader. We are united and ready to lead the House to move our state in the right direction,” Williams Stapleton said. “Working families in New Mexico have been frustrated, and we are ready to talk about solutions to bring them economic development and jobs.”
House Majority Whip – Rep. Doreen Gallegos (D-Las Cruces). Gallegos has served in the New Mexico House since 2013.
“I am looking forward to working with our House Democratic Caucus and our leadership, and I thank our members for placing their confidence in me for the job ahead,” Gallegos said. “We are united and will put the people of our great state first.”
House Majority Caucus Chair – Rep. D. Wonda Johnson (D-Gallup). Johnson was elected to the New Mexico House in 2014.
“I am so proud of the incredible diversity of our 38 members and our leadership,” Johnson said. “This is a critical role, and I am grateful for the opportunity to work hard to serve the people of New Mexico and our House Democratic members as their Caucus Chair.”
Voters elected Democrats during the Nov. 8 General Election to the majority after a 2-year Republican majority in the state House of Representatives. The full House of Representatives will elect the Speaker of the House by a plurality of votes on the opening day of the 53rd Legislature.