Meet the Candidates

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Aurora Dolores Chavez

Aurora Dolores Chavez

Age: 45

Occupation: Chief deputy clerk

Education: High school graduate; mandatory election school

Previous elected political offices: None

Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a DWI or a felony in New Mexico or in another state? “No.”

1. What experience qualifies you for the Valencia County clerk position?

“My career began in the clerk’s office in 2008 as a Bureau of Elections clerk, and in 2013 I was appointed as chief deputy clerk. I’ve assisted in more than 26 federal and state elections. I’m proficient in Tyler Eagle Recorder, SERVIS (election software) and am a certified voting machine technician.”

2. What skills or qualities are the most important in a clerk?

“Experience in administering elections is a must in this position; the clerk must have the training and the knowledge of the processes involved. I firmly believe in a fair and transparent election process and strength in public records and representing all the residents of Valencia County.”

3. What new processes or technology will you use to handle elections more efficiently and what is your timeline?

“Implement satellite sites or mobile voting units for our most rural parts of Valencia County by 2022. Create online trainings and election materials for poll workers immediately. Working with the finance director and the BOCC to prepare a balanced budget for the clerk’s office is imperative to reach these goals.”

4. Providing access to public information is an integral part of the county clerk’s job. What improvements will you make to increase access to public records?

“Our plats, land records and marriage licenses have been digitized and need to be imported to the software that we currently use so that they can be accessible online to the public. Also, updating our website to add online marriage applications to streamline the process of applying for a license.”

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Michael Milam (R)

Elected as Valencia County Clerk

Michael Milam

Age: 57

Occupation: Real estate broker, Keller Williams Realty; owner/broker of Preferred Property Management

Education: Graduated high school from New Mexico Military Institute; degree in applied science at Eastern New Mexico Roswell

Previous elected political offices: None

Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a DWI or a felony in New Mexico or in another state? “No.”

1. What experience qualifies you for the Valencia County clerk position?

“Through my 32 years of experience in dealing with the public, I have developed good communication skills that have proven to be beneficial in accomplishing necessary objectives, while being aware of the importance of working as a team to get the job done.”

2. What skills or qualities are the most important in a clerk?

“The ability to assess changes needed to better serve the needs of the public, as well as the functions of the office personnel, which would create a more efficient office.”

3. What new processes or technology will you use to handle elections more efficiently and what is your timeline?

“Primary importance is to verify the legitimacy of the voter. This process will eliminate voter fraud by requiring proof of their legal right to vote; assuring the voter is a resident of Valencia County; and critiquing current records to remove people who are deceased. Timeline of one to two years.”

4. Providing access to public information is an integral part of the county clerk’s job. What improvements will you make to increase access to public records?

“Establish the availability of accurate and reliable public records, via the internet. Implementing this process is a priority.”

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