Joseph Cervantes was a six-term member of the New Mexico House of Representatives, representing southern Dona Ana County where he grew up as part of a fourth generation farming family. He has been a member of the New Mexico State Senate since 2013. Joseph and his family continue to farm near La Mesa, New Mexico, and own Cervantes Enterprises, one of New Mexico’s largest chile producers and processors. Joseph is a graduate of UNM law school, and initially joined the Albuquerque offices of Modrall Sperling. He then returned to Las Cruces in 1995 to establish his own firm. The Cervantes Law Firm specializes in business, commercial, construction, and personal injury litigation.
Daniel E. Chand received his Ph.D. in Public Policy in the Policy Management specialization at the University of Arkansas and has a master’s in Political Science with an emphasis in Community Development from Illinois State University. His primary areas of interests are nonprofit advocacy and policy implementation, specifically relating to immigration policy. He is currently studying the role of administrative judges in the policy implementation process and the use of 501(c) nonprofits in elections.
Paul Gessing became the first full-time President of the Rio Grande Foundation in March of 2006. Since joining the Foundation, Gessing has been a prominent voice for limited government and individual liberties in policy areas including: Constitutional liberties, taxes, health care, education, and transportation. Prior to joining the Foundation, Gessing headed up the lobbying efforts of the National Taxpayers Union (NTU) a respected taxpayer-advocacy organization in Washington, DC. He has published articles in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, US News & World Reports, The Albuquerque Journal, Barron’s and several other major publications. Paul has also testified in Congress and before a variety of state and local bodies.
Viki Harrison is the executive director for Common Cause New Mexico where she coordinates legislative initiatives, does public education and research, organizes volunteers and is responsible for fundraising and budget oversight. She joined CCNM in early 2012, prior Harrison was the Executive Director of NM Repeal, where she led the winning campaign in New Mexico to abolish the death penalty. Earlier in her career she was the Program Manager for Animal Protection of New Mexico, and part of the team that successfully banned cockfighting in the state.
Gill Sorg graduated from Winona State University in Montana with a bachelor’s degree in biology. He taught science at St. Augustine School in Minnesota. Sorg joined the Peace Corps and taught science at in Ghana. Sorg received a Master’s of Science in Biology at the University of North Dakota. After employment with the Montana Department of Agriculture as a pesticide specialist, Sorg joined his family’s ranch and farm in Wolf Point Montana. In 1998 Sorg moved to New Mexico and was employed as a consultant for growing alfalfa seed. Sorg has worked as a substitute teacher, has had seasonal employment at WSMR, and has worked with the both the Threatened and Endangered Species and National Environment Policy Act.
Sunshine Week Moderator Peter Goodman has been both a journalist and a lawyer, and currently writes a controversial Sunday column published in the Las Cruces Sun-News and on KRWG’s web-site. He holds degrees from NMSU in Journalism/filmmaking (B.A.) and English/creative writing (M.A.).