About Joseph Cervantes
Joseph and his wife Jennifer have been married for over nineteen years. They have three daughters, Alexandra, Isabella and Juliana who attend Las Cruces public schools. Jennifer is an award winning author, and an assistant dean at NMSU.
Joseph grew up working on the La Mesa family farm established by his grandparents, and on their ranch near Deming. After graduating from Las Cruces High School, Joseph attended UNM and received an undergraduate degree in architecture, followed by a graduate degree in architecture from Cal Polytech. After beginning his professional career in California, he returned to New Mexico to build grade schools for the Gadsden School District in Sunland Park and Anthony. Joseph later obtained a law degree from UNM, and after years with New Mexico's largest law firm, established his own firm in Las Cruces.
Joseph's public service has included Democrat Party State Treasurer and Dona Ana County Commissioner. He has served six terms in the NM House of Representatives, and has been part of the House leadership in every term after his first, including chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Vice-chairman of the House Rules Committee, and Co-Chair for the interim committee of both House and Senate on Water and Natural Resources.
As a state representative Joseph has passed legislation to open all legislative committees to the public and press, to recover hundreds of millions of wrongfully misappropriated taxpayer funds, to protect whistleblowers, and to apply the Government Conduct Act to judges, along with many other reforms to assure ethics and public confidence in government. Most recently Joseph co-chaired the House Impeachment subcommittee to address allegations related to PRC misconduct. Joseph has also passed important legislation to protect the delivery and conservation of water to southern Dona Ana County colonias and farms, and co-sponsored the Colonias Infrastructure Act to provide for basic services in border communities.
In addition to his law practice, Joseph and his family partners have established and operate local businesses in farming and chile processing, as well as in real estate construction projects. Joseph's family members have been committed to public service for decades in Dona Ana County, and those values have been passed onto his daughters.
In 2010, Joseph passed the Whistleblower Protection Act to make sure wrongdoings in state government would be exposed without the threat of retaliation. After learning that low-income housing funds were misappropriated, he was the first elected official to expose the Housing Authority scandal bu conducting legislative hearings that uncovered millions of dollars going to line the pockets of insiders.