Jefferson L. Byrd was elected and sworn into office to his first term as a Public Regulation Commissioner representing District 2 on January 1, 2019. Growing up on his family’s ranch, he graduated from Mosquero High School in Quay County and went on to attend New Mexico State University, where he obtained a degree in Agricultural Engineering. While attending NMSU, Jeff met his future wife Suzanne, a math teacher at Logan Public Schools and a registered Professional Civil Engineer. They have been blessed with two sons, Noah and Zachary. Jeff is a devout Christian, husband, and father.
Jeff’s work experience is broad, working as an environmental engineer on a Geoprobe rig installing micro-monitoring wells at a depth of 18 to 20 feet as a geologist and completing site delineation plans of numerous industrial sites from New York to California. He has installed and completed site remediation systems at various sites around the Southwest. Jeff is also a cattle rancher and works as a wind-miller on his own and neighboring ranchers’ wells.
As the former Vice Chair of the Public Regulation Commission, Jeff currently represents New Mexico on the Southwest Power Pool Regional State Committee, which is comprised of retail regulatory commissioners from Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Texas.
Jeff works every day to represent New Mexico families and businesses to ensure access to reliable and affordable utilities and promote energy independence for our state. He is thoughtful in his decisions and knows that his vote not only impacts his constituents but all citizens in our diverse state. Jeff has worked with his fellow commissioners to ensure consumers were protected from disconnections and that utility providers were able to maintain their solvency during the COVID pandemic.
District 2 continues to diversify New Mexico’s energy reliance by expanding our renewable energy source with the Sagamore wind project, a 522MW wind farm which was completed in Roosevelt County. This project is one of the largest wind farms ever built in our State and is expected to save New Mexico and Texas customers $110 million annually in generating fuel costs. Sagamore’s 240 Vestas turbines peak generating capacity of 522 MW can produce enough clean electricity to power close to 194,000 houses. This large new supply of carbon-free electricity will go a long way toward helping New Mexico in meeting its clean-energy goals.