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FBI’s Sonya Chavez named U.S. Marshal for NM

Sonya K. Chavez, a 22-year veteran of the FBI, has been appointed to serve as New Mexico’s next U.S. Marshal.

Chavez – if confirmed by the U.S. Senate – will replace Conrad Candelaria, an appointee of President Barack Obama who served in the post for nearly eight years before resigning for undisclosed reasons in February.

U.S. Marshals assist the federal judiciary by apprehending fugitives, transporting prisoners, and protecting witnesses.

As a supervisory special agent with the FBI in Albuquerque, Chavez led the Albuquerque Safe Streets Gang Task Force from 2010 to 2017. She has also worked in the FBI field office in Chicago. In a previous career, Chavez was a television news anchor and reporter in San Angelo, Tex.

Chavez holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication from New Mexico State University and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of New Mexico.

She was one of four candidates under consideration for the post. The others were James Burrell, assistant chief deputy U.S. marshal; Larry Harper, supervisory deputy U.S. marshal; and Pete Kassetas, New Mexico State Police chief.