At an executive session Tuesday trustee members of the Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative elected new leadership, placing Dennis Trujillo as the new president of the Co-op’s board.
Bruce Duran was elected to the seat of vice president, John Ramon Vigil is the board’s new secretary, Dolores McCoy is the new treasurer and Stanley Crawford is the assistant secretary treasurer.
All votes for each seat were unanimous.
Trujillo said the COVID-19 pandemic provided some major challenges for the Co-op.
“It will be difficult, we are facing a lot of challenges regarding COVID and our big commercial users aren’t operating at this time so we’re seeing a loss in revenue.”
Crawford said he was hopeful despite the challenges the Co-op was facing.
“I’m hopeful in terms of expanding our renewables portfolio,” Crawford said. “Expect a lot more transparency going forward, I’m going to push for more participation by members, maybe creating an advisory board.”
Crawford said he felt the previous leadership was working fine until very recently.
“I felt the board was working well until the appointment of the new general manager came up,” Crawford said. “That search will continue.”
Trujillo said current General Manager Ernesto Gonzales came out of retirement to work for the Co-op on a temporary basis but finding him a replacement was one of the Board’s top priorities.
“We need to do the outreach as far as we can to hire a manager who will be there for a while and add stability to the Co-op” Trujillo said.
Dave Neil, a Co-op member from District six said he was excited for the new leadership.
“I’m tickled pink,” Neil said. “We need to revise the bylaws, I hope we can start looking at a way to push it through.”
Neil said a previous attempt to revise the Co-op’s bylaws was proposed at the annual members meeting a few years ago but the boards leadership shot it down then.
Trujillo agreed the bylaws needed some updating.
“Our bylaws need some changes,” Trujillo said. “Things have changed in how we do business, we’ll probably set up an ad-hoc committee and get some member input to look at how they can be changed. We need some legal assistance and a quorum of members to change the bylaws. Everything comes with a price of course we need to find a way to save money and provide a good service to our consumers.”