JMEC Board Replaces Interim General Manager, Hires Communications Director



The Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative Board of Trustees named a new General Manager and hired a Chief Information Officer to increase stability within the organization and improve transparency in response to requests from board members and others. 

The board named Ernesto Gonzales to serve as General Manager, with a one-year contract. Gonzales worked for over 37 years in rural electric cooperatives before retirement. He came out of retirement previously in 2014 to fill the general manager’s position after the departure of Rose Marie Law. 

During his tenure as General Manager Gonzales helped the co-op overcome financial difficulty and helped finalize several tribal easements before handing over leadership to Joseph Sanchez in late 2014. 

“Ernesto has proven himself as a stabilizing force within the co-op in the past, and his appointment now will benefit our board, employees, and member-owners as various legal issues are resolved,” Board President Leo Marquez said. 

Outgoing interim General Manager Andrew J. Chavez will resume his previous role as director of information technology. Mr. Chavez was appointed interim in May. The JMEC Board of Trustees would like to thank Mr. Chavez for his dedication and willingness to step up to the plate during this time. “Mr. Chavez has certainly done a great job,” Board President Marquez said. 

“As a board, as an organization, we want to be able to continue to provide accurate, detailed information to our member-owners and the public,” Marquez said. “Today we hired a Chief Information Officer to improve our communications both within the co-op and with members of the media.” 

The board hired Tabitha Clay, a former newspaper reporter, as Chief Information Officer. With a background in news writing, Clay has shown a commitment to transparency that will benefit the co-op moving forward. 

In addition to announcing new initiatives and achievements, Clay will also research and provide answers to members about co-op legal matters, business agreements, and financial records. 

The Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative, Inc. is the largest rural electric cooperative provider in New Mexico. Our goal is to be the best electric cooperative in New Mexico, based on price, customer service, and reliability to enhance the quality of life for the communities we serve.