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|Member of the New Mexico Senate|
from the 31st district
|Assumed office |
|Preceded by||Cynthia Nava|
|Born||January 19, 1961|
Las Cruces, New Mexico, U.S.
|Education||University of New Mexico,|
Albuquerque (BA, JD)
California Polytechnic State
Joseph Cervantes (born January 19, 1961) is an American attorney in private practice in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and currently a member of the New Mexico Senate, representing the 31st District since 2012.
Early life and education
Joseph Cervantes was born in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and raised farming near La Mesa in southern Doña Ana County. Cervantes graduated from Las Cruces High School in 1979, and the University of New Mexico with a bachelor of arts in architecture in 1983. In 1985, Cervantes received a Master of Architecture degree from California Polytechnic State University. He was licensed as an architect by the State of California in 1987 and became an associate member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA).
In 1991 Cervantes received a J.D. degree from the University of New Mexico School of Law, where he was a member of the UNM Law Review, and National Moot Court and Mock Trial teams.
Professional and business careers
Cervantes practiced architecture in La Jolla, California, with Dale Naegle & Associates before returning to New Mexico in 1987 for the construction of elementary school projects for the Gadsden Independent School District. After graduating from law school in 1991, Cervantes worked for the Albuquerque law firm Modrall Sperling Roehl Harris & Sisk, until founding the Cervantes Law Firm in 1995. Cervantes is a member of the New Mexico State Bar, the ABA Litigation Section, and a former member of the Inn of Courts. Cervantes is a Commissioner for New Mexico on the Uniform Law Commission (ULC).
In addition to practicing law, Cervantes has business interests in commercial real estate and development, and in farming and agricultural food processing, in southern New Mexico.
Cervantes is a recipient of the Dixon First Amendment Freedom Award from the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government, and served on the Board of Directors for New Mexico First, and Leadership New Mexico. He is a parishioner of St. Albert the Great Newman Center in Las Cruces.
Cervantes was elected as National Delegate to the Democratic National Conventions in 1988 and 2000, and as Democratic state party Treasurer.
Cervantes was first elected to public office in 1998 defeating Republican incumbent Doña Ana County Commissioner Dora Harp. In 2001, Cervantes was appointed to the New Mexico House of Representatives, and was reelected in five successive campaigns through 2012. In the New Mexico House of Representatives, Cervantes was appointed as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Vice-Chairman of the House Rules Committee, and Chairman of the interim Water & Natural Resources Committee. In 2011, Cervantes was appointed as Co-Chairman of the House Rules Subcommittee for impeachment of Public Regulation Commissioner Jerome Block.
In 2012, Cervantes announced he would seek the New Mexico Senate seat vacated by the retirement of Sen. Cynthia Nava. In the June 2012 Democratic primary election Cervantes defeated former Sunland Park Mayor Jesus Ruben Segura. Cervantes went on to win with 68.26% of the general election vote.
Cervantes and his wife, New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Cervantes, are parents of three daughters, Alex, Bella, and Jules and reside in Doña Ana County.
- "Statewise Results - State Senator - Page 5". [New Mexico Secretary of State]. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- Representative Joseph Cervantes at the NM House website
- Project Vote Smart - Representative Joseph Cervantes (NM) profile
- Follow the Money - Joseph Cervantes