Candidates file paperwork for this year's primary election in San Juan County

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times

AZTEC — Activity at the San Juan County Clerk's Office was in full swing on March 8 as area residents filed candidacy paperwork for the June 7 primary election.

On the ballot this year are seats for state representative, county commission, magistrate judge, county assessor, county sheriff, probate judge and public education commission.

Among those who filed on Tuesday was County Assessor Jimmy Voita.

"I enjoy serving the people of the county," Voita said was his reason for seeking re-election.

Voita is the sole Republican candidate for the position. Farmington resident and Democrat Henry C. Silentman filed for the seat as well.

New Mexico elections:Lawsuit alleges San Juan County's new district map violates Voting Rights Act

State Rep. Rod Montoya, R-Farmington, left, and Christina J. Aspaas review information for candidates on the New Mexico Secretary of State website during filing day on March 8 at the San Juan County Clerk's Office in Aztec.

Also visiting the clerk's office was Rep. Rod Montoya, R-Farmington, who is seeking another term as state representative for District 1. No Democratic candidates filed for the seat.

"I'm just looking to go back and build on momentum that we had this year," Montoya said about the legislative session that ended in February.

Other incumbents for state representative seats who are running unopposed are Rep. T. Ryan Lane, R-Aztec, for District 3, Rep. Derrick J. Lente, D-Sandia Pueblo, for District 65, and Rep. Harry Garcia, D-Grants, for District 69.

Republican P. Mark Duncan is running for state representative District 2. Duncan is the mayor of Kirtland.

For the state representative District 4 seat, Rep. Anthony Allison, D-Fruitland, will face fellow Democrat Christina J. Aspaas. No Republican candidates filed for the seat.

Aspaas is a member of the Central Consolidated School District Board of Education, where she has served for many years.

Incumbent Doreen Wonda Johnson, D-Rehoboth, will face Kevin M. Mitchell, a Democrat from Tohatchi. No Republican candidates filed for the position.

Kerby Johnson completes his candidacy paperwork for Magistrate Judge Division 4 during filing day on March 8 at the San Juan County Clerk's Office in Aztec.

County Commission districts 1, 2 candidates

County commissioner GloJean Todacheene is facing challenges from fellow Democrats Stanley Wauneka Sr., of Kirtland, and Albert J. Paul, of Teec Nos Pos, for the District 1 seat.

No Republican Party candidates filed for the position.

Candidates for the county commission District 2 seat are Democrat Zachariah J. George, of Crownpoint, and Republicans Gary M. McDaniel, of Bloomfield, and Ervin Chavez, of Bloomfield.

This will be the first election under the county's new map that outlines boundaries for commission seats. The map was adopted by the county commission last year, but it has come under questioning by the Navajo Nation.

In February, the tribal government and others sued the county over claims that commissioners violated the Voting Rights Act by approving a map that packs Native American voters into a single district.

More:Navajo Nation president Jonathan Nez signs revision to voter registration time period into law

San Juan County Clerk Tanya Shelby reviews paperwork submitted by a candidate during filing day on March 8 at her office in Aztec.

Magistrate judge races, additional county seats

Magistrate judge Division 1: Russell L. Bradford, Republican; Dagmar Kamilah Keams, Republican; Songtree L. Pioche, Democrat

Magistrate judge Division 2: Rena Scott, Republican; Stanley R. King, Democrat

Magistrate judge Division 3: Mark Steven Hawkinson, Republican

Magistrate judge Division 4: Trudy M. Chase, Democrat; Kerby Johnson, Democrat

Magistrate judge Division 5: Erich F. Cole, Republican

Magistrate judge Division 6: Stacey D. Biel, Republican

Probate Judge: Gary Risley, Republican

County Sheriff: R. Shane Ferrari, Republican

Public Education Commission District 5: Sharon Clahchischilliage, Republican

A full list of candidates can be found on the New Mexico Secretary of State's website.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at

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