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Hollifield chosen by governor for Interstate Stream Commission

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Gov. Susana Martinez announced several appointments to state boards and commissions Friday afternoon, including the appointment of Roswell’s Carrie Hollifield to the influential and embattled Interstate Stream Commission.

Hollifield has co-owned and managed the Brown Brothers Ranch southeast of Roswell for more than two decades, managing the cultivation, watering and harvesting of crops as well as seasonal crop rotation and water management. Hollifield has also served as a supervisor for the Chaves County Soil and Water Conservation District since 2015.

“I am honored to be appointed and I will serve and I will represent the Pecos Valley and the state of New Mexico,” Hollifield said Friday night. “I’m just a common, everyday person. My heart is in the Pecos Valley and I firmly believe that we need representation on the Interstate Stream Commission. I was honored that I was selected. We need a voice from down here.”

The Interstate Stream Commission has broad powers to investigate, protect, conserve and develop New Mexico’s waters, including both interstate and intrastate stream systems. It negotiates with other states to settle interstate stream controversies. New Mexico is a party to eight interstate stream basins.

The eight unsalaried members of the Interstate Stream Commission are from around the state and are appointed by the governor for either four- or six-year terms. The ninth member is the State Engineer.

Three members of the commission resigned this week.

“There’s some controversy going on, I won’t deny that,” Hollifield said. “Obviously, with the recent resignations, we still need to have a voice from Pecos Valley.”

The Republican Party of Chaves County congratulated Hollifield in a statement Friday night.

“Chaves County Republicans applaud this well-deserved appointment,” the statement said.

The governor also announced Friday that h of Aztec had been appointed to the Interstate Stream Commission, which is authorized to investigate and develop the state’s water supplies and institute legal proceedings for planning, conservation, protection and development of public waters. Gonzales is lifetime irrigator and acequia member and also served as chairman of the MB Ditch Association from 2001 to 2005. He has also served on the advisory board of the Acequias Norteñas since 2001.

The governor announced that several other local residents had been appointed to boards.

Dr. Maurice W. Geldert of Roswell was appointed to the Board of Optometry. Geldert has practiced optometry since 1976 and is a former president of the New Mexico Optometric Association. He holds a Doctor of Optometry from Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tennessee.

David Willden of Roswell was appointed to the Children’s Trust Fund Board of Directors. Willden is the executive director of Pecos Valley Regional Education Cooperative Eight. Previously, he was the superintendent for Raton Public Schools, and he also served as a principal, teacher and coach for Farmington Municipal Schools. Wilden holds a master’s degree in educational administration from New Mexico State University.

Lawrence Young of Artesia was appointed to the Board of Veterinary Medicine. Young, who owns the Artesia Animal Clinic, was the 2003 Veterinarian of the Year for the New Mexico Veterinary Medical Association. He holds a doctorate of veterinary medicine from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.

Robert Rhodes of Alto was appointed to the Northern New Mexico College Board of Regents. He has been involved in higher education for nearly three decades in workforce development and training, community outreach and teaching business and management courses. Rhodes holds a doctorate of education from New Mexico State University.

John Heaton of Carlsbad was appointed to the Economic Partnership. Heaton is chair of the Eddy-Lea Energy Alliance, and is a former member of the New Mexico House of Representatives, where he served from 2006 through 2010. Heaton holds a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from the University of New Mexico.

Editor Jeff Tucker can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 303, or at editor@rdrnews.com.