Wayne Johnson gives a presentation as the state auditor in 2018. Albuquerque Journal file photo.

Come June 30, Sandoval County Manager Dianne Maes will retire, and Wayne Johnson will step into the role July 27.

Maes has been in the position for three years and has been working for the county for 18, according to a county press release.

In the release, Maes advised her successor to give credit where credit is due.

“It takes many people to run this organization, from the commissioners to the staff. You need the talents of many,” she said. “No one person can do it alone, and acknowledging individuals for their hard work and dedication is important.”

Johnson is a former Bernalillo County commissioner and state auditor, and is the Torrance County manager, according to the application he submitted to the county.

He has a bachelor’s degree in University Studies from the University of New Mexico, according to a county release.

“Whether it’s managing county employees; working with the public and media; collaborating with local businesses; dealing with the governor, legislature and state agencies; or representing the commission, I (feel) I have the experience and passion to lead a class A county,” Johnson said in the press release.

According to a Sandoval County list of salaries for the 2019-20 fiscal year, Maes has a salary of $125,000.

According to the professional employment agreement between the county and Johnson, he will make a salary of $137,000.

Johnson was among the top three contenders for the position, joined by Dan Lewis and Santiago Chávez.

Lewis served two terms as an Albuquerque city councilor in 2009-17, and founded and sold a petroleum tanker company called Refined Fuels Transport, according to the application he submitted to the county.

He has a master’s degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a bachelor’s degree from Grand Canyon University, according to the application.

Chávez was Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller’s chief of staff. He holds two master’s degrees and a bachelor’s degree from the University of New Mexico, according to his application.

He also worked for the Town of Bernalillo as an administrator and treasurer, according to the application.

About the author

Assistant Editor at Rio Rancho Observer