Democrat Stephanie Garcia Richard has become the first woman in New Mexico elected to serve as state land commissioner.

Garcia Richard’s work, positions, and record as a State Representative display her passion for the environment and its protection. During Stephanie’s 3-term tenure representing the Jemez Mountain Range district in the State Legislature, she has taken on many challenges, issues and constituency groups that are mirrored at the State Land Office.

The State Land Office is responsible for managing about 13 million mineral acres and 9 million surface acres that are leased for an array of uses, such as grazing and oil and gas drilling. The leases generate hundreds of millions of dollars annually for the state. The money is invested through the multibillion-dollar Land Grant Permanent Fund, with proceeds benefiting public schools, universities, hospitals and other state institutions.

Born in Tucumcari and raised in Silver City, Garcia Richard graduated from Silver High School in the early 1990s. She entered the world of politics in 2010 when she ran against — and nearly defeated — Rep. Jeannette Wallace, a Republican who had represented a Los Alamos-based district for two decades. Wallace died the next year, and Garcia won the first of her three terms in House District 43 in 2012.

Florida has elected the highest-ranking Latina in the state’s political history. State Representative Jeanette Nuñez will be the Lieutenant Governor alongside Republican congressman Ron DeSantis, the new Governor-elect.

Nuñez was born and raised in Miami, Florida. The daughter of Cuban-American Immigrants, she began her healthcare career working at Jackson Health System in 2004 as the State Director for Government Relations and handled all aspects of the organization’s state affairs before being promoted to Vice President of Government Relations.

Nuñez was first elected in 2010 to the Florida House of Representatives. During her tenure in the Florida House of Representatives, Nuñez served as the Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee and the Rules and Policy Committee. She was appointed Chair of the Select Committee on Hurricane Response and Preparedness and has also chaired Health Quality Subcommittee, Government Operations and Technology Appropriations Subcommittee and Higher Education and Workforce Subcommittee.

She is a graduate of Florida International University (FIU), where she has previously served as an adjunct professor. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Political Science, her Masters of Public Administration from FIU and a Six Sigma Certificate from the University of Miami. She is also a graduate of Leadership Miami.

Leticia Peguero joined the Nathan Cummings Foundation (NCF) in New York City as vice president of programs. She has more than 20 years of experience leading and managing programs and grantmaking at the intersections of social and racial justice and the arts.

As vice president of programs, Peguero will develop strategies grounded in principles of social justice philanthropy that are responsive, and reflective of the integrated and complex nature of social change.

She most recently was executive director of the Andrus Family Fund (AFF). Under her leadership, the AFF and the Surdna Foundation developed tools and curricula to engage next generation family philanthropists in meaningful conversations and experiences related to race, class, and privilege.

Before joining AFF, Peguero was the regional vice president at the Posse Foundation, where she managed Posse sites in Los Angeles, Boston and New Orleans, in addition to establishing its newest location at the time in Houston, Texas.

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