Election 2020: These are the uncontested races on ballots in San Juan County

Several candidates faces no challengers

Hannah Grover
Farmington Daily Times

AZTEC — While candidates are gearing up for the final stretch of the campaign season before the Nov. 3, several of the candidates have already essentially won their races.

These candidates have no challengers on the ballot and are preparing for either a first term or another term as elected officials.

Here's a look at the uncontested races that will appear on ballots in San Juan County.

County Commission

Two newcomers and one incumbent will serve four-year terms on the San Juan County Commission. None of them have general election challengers.

Steve Lanier, a retired high school teacher and coach, will replace Jim Crowley on the County Commission representing the Aztec area. Lanier defeated Crowley in the Republican primary election.

Terri Fortner replaces her husband on the County Commission after defeating Erich Cole in the Republican primary.

John Beckstead has remained unopposed for a second term on the San Juan County Commission. Beckstead was originally set to face Meridee Walters in the general election, but Walters dropped out of the race.

Beckstead, Lanier and Fortner are all Republicans and will join one other Republican and a Democrat on the commission. Beckstead represents a portion of Farmington, as well as Kirtland. Fortner will also represent the Farmington area, while Lanier will represent Aztec and a portion of Bloomfield.

State House of Representatives

Several state House of Representatives districts that include parts of San Juan County will be uncontested on the ballot. Four of the candidates are incumbents, but newcomer Ryan Lane will replace current Rep. Paul Bandy, R-Aztec. Bandy chose not to seek re-election.

Lane is an attorney and represents the City of Bloomfield. He has law offices in Aztec and previously served on the Aztec Municipal School Board of Education. He and his wife own the popular Aztec ice cream shop Vanilla Moose. Lane’s district includes the northeastern section of the county, including Bloomfield and Aztec. Lane is running as a Republican.

Meanwhile, Rep. Rod Montoya, R-Farmington, who has served as the house minority whip, is unopposed on the ballot. Montoya was elected in 2014. Montoya works in real estate but has previously worked in mining. His district includes a section of Aztec west of Light Plant Road and parts of east Farmington. The district also includes the community of La Plata.

James Strickler, an oil and gas landman elected in 2006, will serve another term in the state House of Representatives. The Republican represents Farmington.

Democratic candidate Rep. Doreen Wonda Johnson, a consultant from Rehoboth, was first elected in 2014 and will be unopposed in the election. Her district includes south-central San Juan County.

Greater Gallup Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Patricia Lundstrom, a Democrat, is also preparing for another term. Her district includes southwest San Juan County.

State Senate

William "Bill" Sharer, an outspoken Republican from Farmington who filibustered the Energy Transition Act in 2019, will be unopposed on the ballot. Sharer is a businessman who has pushed for a 2% flat tax. He was first elected in 2000. His district mainly encompasses Farmington.

Steve Neville, a real estate appraiser who lives in Farmington, was first elected in 2004. His district includes the northeast section of the county, including Aztec, Bloomfield and La Plata, as well as a section of north Farmington near San Juan College.

District Court judge

Curtis Gurley was appointed to the bench in 2019 by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham after District Judge John Dean Jr. resigned. He has practiced law since 1989.

District attorney

Robert “Rick” Tedrow was first elected in 2008 and previously worked as an attorney.

County treasurer

Carol Taulbee is currently the deputy county treasurer under Mark Duncan. Duncan is running for state the House of Representatives. 

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at hgrover@daily-times.com.

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