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Metropolitan Detention Center

New Chief Named to Take Over at the Metropolitan Detention Center Following Current Chief’s Retirement


Deputy Chief of Security, Ralph Fernandez, will become the new chief of the Metropolitan Detention Center when Chief Greg Rees retires on Nov. 2, 2018 -- a move the county believes will continue the stability and progress made under Chief Rees’ leadership.

Bernalillo County Manager Julie Morgas Baca recently named Fernandez as Rees’ replacement and tonight the Bernalillo County Commission unanimously supported the decision by voting to concur with the appointment.

Fernandez has nearly 24 years of experience in corrections. He spent 21 years with the New Mexico Corrections Department, retiring as a captain of security. In 2016, he moved to MDC as a use-of-force consultant, hired by the late Manuel Romero, who served as a MDC operations auditor for the U.S. District Court in the McClendon lawsuit. In September 2017, Chief Rees hired Fernandez as his deputy chief of security.

“I am honored and excited to be stepping into the role of chief of corrections at MDC. In just one year under Chief Rees’ direction, the facility has already made significant progress, a path I will continue through my commitment to the staff and inmates at MDC and the citizens of Bernalillo County,” says Ralph Fernandez, the newly appointed MDC chief.

“Deputy Chief Fernandez is a dedicated public servant, who has given his entire career to the safety and security of New Mexico’s residents and inmates. He has already proven himself as a vital asset to the continued improvement and success of the Metropolitan Detention Center in his previous roles as deputy chief and court monitor. Under his direction, I am confident MDC will continue to provide the best possible environment for our staff and inmates alike,” says Bernalillo County Manager Julie Morgas Baca.

Fernandez will earn $150,000 a year. As an at-will employee, Fernandez serves at the pleasure of the county manager.

Chief Rees will officially retire on Nov.2. Until then, Fernandez is shadowing Rees to ensure a smooth transition.

The concurrence vote was 5-0.

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