The terms will expire Dec. 31 for two regents on the Northern New Mexico College Board.

    Damian Martinez, an attorney from Las Cruces, is one of the regents whose term expires. The other is student Regent Tomas Rodriguez.

    College President Rick Bailey said they will continue to serve on the Board until their replacements are nominated by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and confirmed by the New Mexico State Senate.

    The state constitution provides that the five-member Board of Regents consist of four “qualified electors of the state of New Mexico” and one student from the institution.

    The constitution also requires that no more than three Regents belong to the same political party.

    Regents serve six-year terms, and the student regent has a two-year term.

    For the student regent, the student body president provides the College president with a list of recommendations, which is then sent to the governor.

    Bailey said in an interview that the Senate Rules Committee will host hearings on the nominee, and then hold a committee vote. If the committee approves the nominee, it goes to the senate floor for a vote.

    Bailey said there is a special rule for Northern that one regent must reside in El Rito, and that current Board President Mike Martin lives in El Rito.

    The student leadership began searching for a student regent in September, and had a list submitted in October that Bailey sent to the governor’s office, and they are now waiting on a nomination to be named soon.

    Bailey said he removes himself from the process as much as possible, as the appointee becomes the person to whom he reports. So, he does not know who would be considered for Martinez’s seat.

    During a Dec. 9 special Board meeting, both outgoing regents were recognized for their contributions.

    Multiple regents said they hope Martinez will be chosen for another 6-year term.

    Martinez joked that he was nominated because he was the only Democrat that then-Governor Susana Martinez knew. He said he nominated himself for another term but will respect the wishes of the current governor.

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