N.M. Livestock Board

The New Mexico Livestock Board

Baca New Interim Director of New Mexico Livestock Board

Ray E. Baca, Las Vegas, was named Interim Director of the New Mexico Livestock Board (NMLB) in late December. “I understand the industry’s needs and concerns, like animal health, theft, and animal cruelty, both as a rancher and as part of the New Mexico Livestock Board,” he said. “I am willing to give the industry 110 percent.”

“On behalf of the New Mexico Livestock Board, I would like to thank former director Myles Culbertson for his leadership and direction,” he continued. “We appreciate his hard work and wish him well.”

Prior to becoming Interim Director, Baca served as the NMLB’s Area 2 Supervisor, overseeing inspections, personnel and livestock movement in northeastern New Mexico. He has been with the agency since 1993, working first as a livestock inspector in the Las Vegas area, then as District Supervisor. He also owns and operates his family’s ranch in San Miguel County.

Before going to work for the NMLB, Baca worked for the New Mexico Department of Corrections, first as a corrections officer, then as a fire safety and sanitation officer.

He feels that his field experience with the NMLB, including law enforcement certification, will be an asset in his new position. “Starting out as an inspector, and working my way up, I know how it really works out in the field. I know what it takes to get the job done, and what’s needed,” Baca said. “I learned the statutes and how to apply them in the field, and have prosecuted cases. I understand what inspectors are going through on a daily basis.”

Representing the NMLB at the New Mexico legislative session will be a priority for Baca in the coming weeks. He hopes to help legislators and the public understand the agency’s increasing workload, especially when it comes to animal cruelty issues.

“Things have changed drastically in the past twenty years that I have been with the Livestock Board. Today, our inspectors are not just going out and doing brand inspections and verifying proof of ownership,” he explained. “Our responsibilities have increased – we are spending a huge amount of time and revenue on animal cruelty cases – but don’t receive any additional funding for that work. It is hard to do that much more on the same

budget.”