Two key leadership positions for the Bureau of Land Management have been filled with long-term career professionals according to an announcement made December 12 by the BLM.
The positions for the agency’s Arizona and New Mexico State offices will be filled by Raymond Suazo and Jesse Juen, both will be sworn in by BLM Director Bob Abbey in mid-February.
Suazo will serve as the State Director of Arizona, will oversee almost 500 employees and manage more than 12 million surface and 17 million subsurface acres of BLM public lands. He has been serving as the state’s acting director since Jim Kenna, was appointed BLM California State Director earlier this year and was previously the Associate State Director since January 2010.
Juen, who moves from the associate director to director of New Mexico State, will be responsible for more than 13.4 million acres of public lands and 26 million acres of federal oil, natural gas, and minerals that employs about 855 people throughout New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. Juen replaces Linda Rundell who retired. He was the associate director since 2003.
“I’m very pleased that Ray and Jesse have accepted these critical appointments,” Abbey said. “They bring essential skills and a depth of experience that will ensure the successful management of the important public land natural resources under Arizona and New Mexico’s jurisdictions.”
Suazo, a United States Air Force veteran, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in management information systems from New Mexico Highlands University in Las Vegas, New Mexico. He first started his career in natural resources as a range technician with the Forest Service in New Mexico, with positions in the Forest Service in Arizona and headquarters in Washington, D.C. He joined the BLM Arizona office in 2006 as chief information officer and serviced as deputy state director for business resources prior to associate director. He and his wife, Denise, have four children, Reyes, Adela, Victor and Franchesca.
Juen, grew up in El Paso, Texas and received a Bachelor of Science degree from Texas A&M University and a master’s degree in wildlife and fisheries science from Texas Tech University. He began his career as a wildlife biological aid with the Forest Service before joining the BLM as a wildlife biologist in New Mexico’s Roswell office. Besides holding positions throughout New Mexico and Arizona, he servd as deputy assistant director for the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System office in Washington, D.C.