Kevin Lockhart, Chair
Kevin grew up hunting and fishing with his family in the mesquite brush country of west Texas. In 2015 he moved to New Mexico, where the immense beauty and opportunity the state's vast public lands offered changed his life. The ability to roam and connect with the natural world has inspired him to join the fight for access and opportunity for New Mexico hunters and anglers.
A generalist at heart, he hunts and fishes year round, chasing everything from cottontails to elk, turkeys to bass. He enjoys nothing more than cooking and sharing the bounty of his time in the outdoors. When not in the field, Kevin runs a solo law practice in Alamogordo, New Mexico, and focuses the majority of his practice on clients with land and water related issues. He previously served as chairman of the Public Lands Use Advisory Council for Otero County, New Mexico from 2016 to 2018.
Michael Farrington, Vice Chair
Since I was a child I have always had a passion for wild places and the animals that inhabit them. That passion led me to pursue a career as an ichthyologist, and I have spent the past 20 years studying fish throughout the southwestern United States. Outside of a great year living in Missoula Montana, I am a lifelong New Mexican and received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees from UNM.
Whether it was hunting, fishing, camping or hiking, spending time on our public lands has been a cornerstone of my life. I now have the privilege of teaching my two children these same outdoor skills, and the satisfaction that comes from days spent in the field. It is my great pleasure to be working with the New Mexico chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers as it defends the use and enjoyment of our public lands.
Brian Mileshosky, Secretary
Brian was born and raised in Albuquerque and has been shooting and fly fishing since age eight, thanks to his father. Better late than never, he began hunting in 2015 through the invitation and mentorship of co-workers with whom he’s hunted every season since. Having come full circle, Brian has found great joy teaching his young daughter and son to shoot, hunt, fly fish and be responsible stewards of the outdoors. He seeks every opportunity to be outside with his family and, when not drifting flies or sending rounds down range, Brian enjoys hiking, camping, backpacking, amateur radio, and snowboarding.
Public lands, waters and wildlife have provided Brian and his family with an abundance of skills, lessons, resources, sustenance, solace, joy, and memories. Serving within BHA is one way to give back to and conserve these treasures. Professionally, Brian is an electrical engineer having studied at the University of New Mexico and Georgia Tech.
Jennifer Black, Treasurer
Jennifer Black’s love for the outdoors threads multiple states. She grew up in Oklahoma and Colorado, lived in Oregon, and has called New Mexico home since 2005. Her husband shares a second home with her in Monument Valley. Jennifer is an adult onset hunter whose commitment to stewardship prompted her to join BHA. As a board member, her goals are to oversee the financial health of the NM Chapter, encourage the entry of women and people of color into the hunting community, and raise public awareness about the land, water, and wildlife issues facing New Mexico.
Stephanie Walton-Filipczak, Conservation Chair
Stephanie, a Texas native, fell for the mountain beauty of New Mexico after she moved to the Land of Enchantment in 2006. Living most of her life in a state with little public land, she took full advantage of the vast opportunities for outdoor recreation offered by her new resident state. After a few years of intense camping and backpacking, she connected with her grandfather’s heritage of fishing and hunting. Today, her most cherished activities are chasing upland birds with her setter, fly-fishing remote streams in New Mexico and experiencing adventure through her young daughter’s eyes along with her husband as they explore all the public lands the state has to offer. Through her efforts with BHA she hopes to continue the great work of conservationists that came before her to keep public lands in public hands.
Kelly Hampton, Community Outreach Chair
I wear many hats in this life, and like many, am a hard-working American. My wish—like many of you—is that I can spend more of my time in the great outdoors. The support of conservation is important to me and my family. Protecting our lands for hunters and non-hunters alike for future generations to enjoy. I grew up loving the outdoors, and am an avid hunter, pursuing big game in New Mexico and other states whenever I can.
Another passion is what lands me in the kitchen, where no one leaves the table hungry. I worked as a camp cook with an outfitting business for many years. As a mother, I enjoy knowing that I can provide good organic meals and try new recipes to share with my family and friends.
Stephen Ensminger, Southeast Region
Stephen grew up in in the outdoors of Pennsylvania's Appalachian Mountains, which is about as far away from New Mexico within the lower 48 as one could get. As a kid he hunted and fly fished with his dad and cousins, but eventually put down his rod and gun for a career in the US Air Force. Living in places all over the world for the better part of two decades, he longed for the opportunity to get back in to the wild. He eventually relocated to New Mexico for the last stent of his career. Western hunting was completely foreign to him, but Stephen took to it like he’d been hunting in the west all of his life. An avid big game archery hunter, fly fisherman and turkey geek, Stephen strives to be a voice of conservation, to protect our public lands. With a Master’s in Communications, Stephen focus is to engage the public on issues of conservation, to be an advocate for our natural resources and our wild pubic lands.
Felix Hernandez, Board Member at Large
I am a science teacher, husband, father, outdoor enthusiast, and founder of New Mexico Avid Hunters. I was raised in the southeastern part of New Mexico. I attended the University of New Mexico and received my BS in Education. I have since spent my time educating students in science classrooms within the northern areas of New Mexico. In my free time I have helped with conservation efforts with the Mule Deer Foundation .
New Mexico has a diverse population of big game and small game and it’s our responsibility to harvest game ethically and responsibly. As hunters we must focus our efforts in conservation to help keep sustainable populations for our future children. Hunting is a tradition that has been passed down for generations, and we plan to keep it alive for future generations.
Cody McNiel, Board Member at Large
I was born and raised in Aztec, NM. I grew up riding dirt bikes, hunting and fly fishing on our beautiful New Mexico public lands. I moved to Las Cruces in 2004 for college and enlisted in the USMC in 2006. I separated from the military in 2010 and finished my degree in 2012. I have spent my career working with at risk youth and I’m currently employed as a Juvenile Probation Officer Supervisor in Las Cruces.
I love backpack hunting for elk and coues deer. One of my greatest passions is training bird dogs and hunting quail. My family breeds, trains and field trials a special line of pointers that excels in finding birds in the desert southwest. My other hobbies include archery, fly fishing, long range shooting, weight training and of course spending time with my beautiful wife and girls. The public lands in our state and across the country are so special to me and my family. They have provided sanctuary, sustenance, adventure, wonder and freedom. My hope is through my work with NM BHA we will ensure our public land legacy will remain intact for future generations.
Piotr was born and raised in Poland and came to the United States after his PhD graduation to pursue a career as a research scientist. Although very proud of his Slavic origin, he was soon enchanted by the United States, most importantly, by the American drive for preserving individual rights and personal freedom of its citizens. He quickly learned that one of the most important aspects of American way of life is a genuine connection to the land and the wildlife it carries. Tantalized by the North American model of conservation, with its sustainable use of natural resources and admiration for public lands, he became a first-generation hunter. He utilizes any free time from his work as an assistant professor of chemistry at UNM-Valencia to camp, fish, hunt and explore the natural wonders of New Mexico together with his wife and daughter.
Joel Gay, Policy Advisor
Joel grew up in Albuquerque and learned to love the backcountry while fishing, skiing and hiking around New Mexico with his family. After graduating from UNM he moved to Alaska and stayed nearly 30 years, working as a journalist and commercial fisherman and enjoying the state’s great outdoors. After returning to New Mexico in 2005, he was hired as communications director for the New Mexico Wildlife Federation. Now retired, Joel is an avid bow hunter and fly fisherman who would rather walk miles into the backcountry than hunt or fish among the crowds.
Adam Barkalow, Central Region
Adam Barkalow was born and raised in New Mexico and was exposed to hunting and fishing at an early age through family and friends. Trying to keep himself outdoors as much as possible led Adam to seek a career in conservation biology. Adam attained both undergraduate and graduate degrees in biology from the University of New Mexico. Since 2007, Adam has worked in New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah trying to restore native fishes, amphibians, reptiles, and invertebrates. Currently, Adam works for the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish as the San Juan River native fish biologist. His goals are to continue to do great things for fish and wildlife conservation, protect public lands in perpetuity, enrich his family’s life with outdoor experiences, and hopefully one day train a decent bird dog.
Jeb Brown, Central Region
Jeb Brown grew up duck hunting and fly fishing in Arizona, and eagerly anticipated every opportunity to camp on public lands in the cool mountains of northern and eastern AZ. Now a self-declared hunting and fishing generalist, Jeb enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities in New Mexico, particularly those resulting in cooking food from the wild and sharing with friends and family. Better still, enjoyed with a first-time hunter or fisher. As a hydrologist Jeb understands careful conservation and protection of water and habitat is foundational for preserving a heritage of wildlife on the landscape.