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Herrington announces key staff appointments

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Mike Herrington and Charles Yslas are pictured at the Chaves County Republican Party’s Election Day results party on Tuesday night. (Alison Penn Photo)

Mike Herrington, Chaves County Sheriff-elect, announced the names of two people who will join his staff when he takes over the sheriff’s office in December.

The names were announced by Herrington during an election night watch party Tuesday at the Chaves County Republican Party campaign office shortly before the polls closed.

Herrington, a former Chaves County deputy, defeated incumbent Sheriff Britt Snyder in the June 5 Republican primary, 56 to 43 percent. He was unopposed in Tuesday’s general election. Herrington spoke to the crowd at the party shortly before polls closed in New Mexico, where he revealed the names of two key appointments he will make to his staff.

Charles Yslas, who served alongside Herrington while both were Chaves County deputies, will be chief deputy when Herrington is sworn in as sheriff Dec. 31. The position of chief deputy is now held by Shane Baker.

For the last 10 years, Yslas was captain and deputy chief for the New Mexico Military Institute’s Police Department until his recent resignation.

“He is bringing a lot of knowledge and a lot of expertise that is really going to help me,” Herrington told the crowd.

Janet Gomez, a long-time Chaves County employee, will also join Herrington’s staff. Gomez, a Roswell resident, is director of health care for Indigent Care Services for the county, a position she has held for 15 years.

According to the county website, Indigent Care Services links people in the county who cannot afford medical insurance with contracted medical providers. Before she took her current post, Gomez worked as the accounts payable officer in the county finance department for five years.

She also served as Herrington’s campaign treasurer during the campaign.

Gomez said in an interview Wednesday that as the sheriff’s administrator, she will be in charge supervising administrative personnel within the office along with handling grants, agreements and the office budget.

“She knows the ins and outs of the budget, she knows stuff that was really scaring me to death,” Herrington said.

He added that with Gomez handling the budget, he will be able to concentrate on combatting crime in Chaves County.

“Safety of the deputies, safety of the people in this community and putting criminals away is what I am about,” he said.

Herrington added he will hold a formal swearing-in ceremony 3 p.m. Dec. 31 at the Chaves County Administrative Building, and the public is invited to attend.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.