BLM Anounces Key Appointments in Arizona & New Mexaco

For Immediate Release: December 12, 2011 Contact: Jeff Krauss, 202-912-7410

The Bureau of Land Management today announced the appointment of two long-term career professionals to key leadership positions in the agency's Arizona and New Mexico State Offices.

Raymond Suazo has been selected as the State Director in Arizona, where he will oversee nearly 500 employees and the management of more than 12 million surface and 17 million subsurface acres of BLM public lands in Arizona. He is currently serving as Arizona's acting State Director and has held the Associate State Director position since January 2010. He replaces Jim Kenna, who was appointed BLM California State Director earlier this year.

Jesse Juen, Associate New Mexico State Director, has been named as State Director for the more than 13.4 million acres of public lands and 26 million acres of federal oil, natural gas, and minerals where about 855 employees work in New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. Juen replaces Linda Rundell, who recently retired. Juen has served as Associate State Director in New Mexico since 2003.

"I'm very pleased that Ray and Jesse have accepted these critical appointments," BLM Director Bob 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, began his natural resources career as a range technician with the Forest Service in New Mexico. He also served with the Forest Service in Arizona and in its headquarters office in Washington, D.C. In 2006, he joined the BLM Arizona State Office as chief information officer and served as deputy state director for business resources before being tapped as Associate State Director. He and his wife Denise have four children, Reyes, Adela, Victor, and Franchesca. Suazo holds a bachelor of arts degree in management information systems from New Mexico Highlands University in Las Vegas, NM.

Juen, who grew up in El Paso, Texas, 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 area office. He has held positions throughout New Mexico and Arizona, as well as serving as deputy assistant director for the BLM's National Landscape Conservation System office in Washington, D.C. Juen 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 and his wife Maggie have two sons, Michael and Robert.

Suazo and Juen will be sworn into their new positions by BLM Director Bob Abbey in mid-February.

The BLM, an agency of the U.S. Department of the Interior, manages more land – 245 million surface acres – than any other Federal agency. Most of this public land is located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The Bureau carries out a multiple-use mission, one that is aimed at sustaining the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future.

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