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Board Biographies

Joaquin Baca - Albuquerque

Joaquin is a Regional hydrologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; previously he has worked in both the private and state government sectors in a geotechnical and watershed management capacity.   His resume also includes working  as an educator for Albuquerque Public Schools, along with serving his county in the U.S. Army and the NM Army National Guard  He holds Degrees from California State University  and the University of New Mexico. 

Aron Balok  - Roswell 

Aron Balok has been the Water Resource Specialist for the Pecos Valley Artesian Conservancy District for about a year. He came to the district from the New Mexico Farm and Livestock Bureau, where he was the South Eastern Regional Director.  Aron has a passion for New Mexico's agricultural heritage and a deep appreciation for the complexity of the water issues that face the state.  He has been professionally involved in water related issues for the past seven years.

Aron was raised on a cattle ranch in north western New Mexico. He attended New Mexico State University, and in 1997 graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Extension and Education. He and his Wife Hayly and their three girls live in Roswell New Mexico.

Consuelo (Conci) Bokum ,  past President - Santa Fe

Conci has served as President of the Board of Directors of the New Mexico Water Dialogue since 199x, and since August 2006 as interim Executive Director. She is the director for the New Mexico Water Project, 1000 Friends of New Mexico.  She has been working on water policy issues since 1991 when she and two others co-authored Living Within Our Means: A Water Management Policy for New Mexico in the 21st Century.  She subsequently researched and wrote Implementing the Public Welfare Requirement in New Mexico's Water Code, published in the University of New Mexico School of Law's Natural Resources Journal.  In 2002, she, Alletta Belin, and Frank Titus co-authored Taking Charge of our Water Destiny: A Water Management Policy for New Mexico in the 21st Century. Conci is chair of the Jemez y Sangre Regional Water Planning Council, a member of the Governor's Blue Ribbon Water Task Force, and the public member of the Buckman Direct Diversion Project Board. In 1993 she served on the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission's committee that developed the Regional Water Planning Handbook.
John Brown Corrales

John served as the Dialogue’s executive director from 2002 to 2006. Now mostly retired, his career has focused on understanding how public policy gets made, its results, and how people can change it. He has worked in policy organizations for the federal government, the Navajo Nation, the State of New Mexico, Sandoval County, and (as a consultant) for several Indian tribes and organizations. He taught about the policy process as an instructor at the University of New Mexico in Public Administration and the Political Science Department. In the mid 1990s, as a consultant to a Philippines environmental NGO and later for the New Mexico Acequia Association, he became interested in how institutions – rules, norms, and shared strategies that people use to structure their interactions – work to maintain policy stability and shape policy change around “social-ecological” issues. In 2000-01, as a visiting scholar at Indiana University’s Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, he studied and wrote about these themes in relation to water planning and policy in New Mexico. He has been active in the MRG Water Assembly since 1999.

Aaron Chavez - San Juan Watershed (Farmington)

Aaron graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2000 with a Bachelor Degree in Geography (GIS). Aaron has worked for the San Juan Water Commission since 2001 and is currently the Commission's GIS Coordinator - IT and Web Design Specialist. Through his work at the Commission, Aaron actively participates in a variety of water programs and projects relating to the San Juan Watershed including, the Hydrology Committee for the San Juan Basin Recovery Implementation Program, the Animas Watershed Partnership, the San Juan Watershed Group, and the San Juan Watershed Woody Invasive Initiative. In addition, Aaron is a member of the Colorado River Water Users Association, where he represents New Mexico on the Program Committee. Aaron continues to provide technical support to the San Juan Basin Regional Water Planning Committee and he is currently working on mapping projects in San Juan County to promote regional planning. 

A native New Mexican from Cuba, New Mexico, Aaron currently resides in Aztec with his wife Sabrina, and their two young sons. 

Eileen Dodds - Datil

Eileen is a retired investment banker with 30 years experience in the investment field. She was born and raised in Houston, where she earned a degree in Communications from the University of Houston in 1970. Her roots are deep in the south Texas soil, where her family has a farming history. She moved to rural Catron County after retiring to again enjoy the benefits of a quieter way of life, and found there a reason to champion water conservation measures in the arid climate. She is now involved in both the volunteer fire and EMS services in Datil, and serves on the Board of the San Augustin Water Coalition.


Gary Esslinger -  Las Cruces 

Gary L. Esslinger has been the Treasurer-Manager of the Elephant Butte Irrigation District since 1987.  Gary is a third generation member of a pioneer farming family living in the Mesilla Valley.  His grandfather, J. L. Esslinger, Sr., settled in La Mesa in 1913 prior to the completion of the Elephant Butte Dam.  Gary's father, J. L. Esslinger, Jr., also farmed for over fifty years.  Gary kept his roots in farming as well as other agricultural based industry and lives on the family farm with his wife, Tina. Gary and Tina have three daughters. They have been foster parents since 2001 and legal guardians of three other children.

 Gary earned a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Northern Arizona University in 1973. He returned to the Mesilla Valley and began working for EBID in 1978, where he has been for more than 30 years. Gary was also appointed to the Office of the Dona Ana County Flood Commission,  as Flood Commissioner, a position he held from 2002 until 2006. Gary is actively involved with the Family Farm Alliance and the National Water Resource Association.


Win Jacobs - Las Cruces

Win has been involved w/ water issues (local and state) ever since her move to NM in 1994. She initiated and led a League of Women Voters Greater Las Cruces study committee, culminating in position statement still guiding LWVGLC today. She established contacts with the various water entities which endure today. She is currently a volunteer member of working groups (Public Engagement and Quality of Life/Big Picture) charged with drafting policy and programs for Lower Rio Grande Water Users' part of NM State Water Plan update.

John L. Jones - Tijeras

John is the Chief Operating Officer for Entranosa Water & Wastewater Association, located in the east mountain area of Bernalillo and Santa Fe Counties, and he has served in that capacity since 1998.  Entranosa is a community water system organized under the cooperative statutes of the State.  It serves slightly more than 3100 connections, 98% of which are residential, and provides operational support for three other community water systems servicing an additional 230 residential connections.  He serves as legislative chairman for the NM Rural Water Association, Vice President of the Estancia Basin Regional Water Planning Committee and numerous community groups in Albuquerque and the east mountains. He is a graduate of Santa Fe High School and the University of New Mexico.  He retired as a Commander from the United States Navy in 1997, during which time he earned master degrees from Salve Regina College and the Naval War College, both in Newport RI.   He lives in Albuquerque with his wife, Janice Arnold-Jones.


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