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Bernalillo County Employees of the Quarter Recognized


The Employee Recognition Committee presents seven employees to the Board of Commissioners to receive the recognition of Employee of the Quarter. Each person selected received the highest ranking in their division. The recognition committee ranked each nomination form submitted and selected the employee from each division with the highest average. The Board of County Commissioners recognize and appreciate the hard work and dedication of seven employees who have shown exemplary dedication to Bernalillo County.



Division 1 (County Manager): Tommy Gonzales

Tommy joined Behavioral Health Services (previously DSAP) 10 years ago and is currently the Building Maintenance Foreman for that facility. As a 24-hour campus, the facility presents many challenges as there is always something that needs attention. Yet in spite of this, through his creativity, initiative and excellent leadership skills, he ensures that the facility is maintained and safe for the clients and staff. He is always willing to teach, mentor and learn and his enthusiasm is commendable.

He says he has the best management team there is, without whose support he and his team couldn’t work as effectively. He truly enjoys and respects the people with whom he works.





Division 2 (Community Services): John “LJay” Smith

LJay has been with the Parks & Recreation Department over 15 years. He was recently promoted to a fulltime Sports Coordinator, overseeing adult softball and basketball. Prior to this, he served as a Facility Fitness Coordinator in a part-time capacity for 14 years. He is a certified NETA (National Exercise Trainers Association) Personal Trainer, and has worked with many community members to help them attain their fitness goals. He is very impactful to the youth in the community as well. He works hard and loves to connect with and help the people in the community he serves.

A fitness enthusiast, LJay still works-out on a daily basis. Father, athlete, dog-lover, and friend best describe John ‘LJay” Smith.




Division 3 (Finance): John Herrera

John has been with the county’s Information Technology Department for over 21 years, and is currently the Supervising IT Analyst over the Systems Engineering team. He continues to learn and grow, which allows him to accept new challenges and provide better support and mentorship to those around him. He enjoys the interaction he has with team members, the new technology that they are rolling out, and the fact that every day is different.

John exhibits a strong sense of community by volunteering for programs such as Habitat for Humanity, a Youth Ministry at his church, and as a member of the Knights of Columbus. He loves spending time with his wife Josie and daughter Jamie, do-it-yourself projects, and long hikes with his dog JayJay.





Division 4 (Public Safety): James Hampsten

James has been with the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office for over 22 years and is currently assigned to Field Services Patrol as the day shift Watch Commander. In December he volunteered to spearhead the response and logistics for a multi-agency incident surrounding a suspicious substance. The planning, scheduling, organizing and coordinating the response between internal, external, local, state, federal and private partners is challenging, but it was completed flawlessly by Lt. Hampsten. He truly loves the excitement of the job and the rewards that come from helping people when they need it the most.

He loves his “amazing family” and enjoys spending time with his wife and children.

Division 5 (Public Works): Christopher Johnson

Chris is a mechanic for the Heavy Equipment Shop under the FFM Department. He is a very competent mechanic and has a broad knowledge of many types and manufacturers of various equipment. Recently while working on a paving project on Bobby Foster, O&M Road staff identified some equipment that was not operating properly. Chris responded promptly to their calls, re-prioritized his work schedule in order to address their needs, and made all necessary repairs on site. His efforts were a huge relief to the crew and ensured that the project was not delayed as a result.

The O&M Road Section depends a lot on the Heavy Equipment Shop and Chris has never disappointed. He is a critical resource for O&M and an asset to the County.




Division 6 (General Services): Joe Rodarte

Joe came to the county in September 2017 and is currently a Safety Specialist with the Risk Management Department. He is responsible for providing safety-related training to county employees, conducting facility inspections, and performing incident assessments to ensure that the Risk Management Loss Control Policy and OSHA mandates are maintained throughout county operations. He demonstrates practical relevance during his trainings to reinforce the purpose and importance of safety. He shares his private sector knowledge with fellow employees, always with respect and professionalism. He enjoys being able to encourage all employees and to stress the role of safety in their day-to-day work.

Outside of work he enjoys spending time with his wife and three children.




Division 7 (MDC): Travis Purcell

Travis joined MDC nearly 2 years ago. He is recognized for always helping out as needed, and responding and assisting whenever incidents occur. He enjoys his job, loves the people with whom he works, and thrives on the ability to help others. His outgoing personality and big heart contribute to his love of helping people, even when they don’t ask. He believes he has a great purpose in life to help facilitate positive outcomes.

Originally from El Paso, Texas, Travis moved here about four years ago. He is a big football fan, and he played football into college and dreamed of being in the NFL, but that was not his destiny. In his spare time he loves spending time with his girlfriend and friends, playing video games and sports.

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