Deep roots and a tradition of community service
Jacob Candelaria was brought up in a working class neighborhood in Albuquerque. Though times were sometimes tough, Jacob learned at an early age the value of hard work and commitment to both family and community.
A proud graduate of St. Pius X High School, Jacob went on to attend Princeton University where he graduated with a degree in public policy in the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.
After undergraduate school, Jacob turned down the opportunity to work on Wall Street and instead chose to return home and get to work for the state he loves.
Since returning home, Jacob has worked as a leadership fellow with Think New Mexico, a results oriented think tank; as a program evaluator for the New Mexico Legislative Finance Committee, the state agency charged with crafting the state budget; as a leadership analyst to late NM House of Representatives Speaker Ben Lujan Sr. (D-Nambe); and as Executive Director of Equality New Mexico.
Since returning home, Jacob has worked as a leadership fellow with Think New Mexico, working on ground breaking education reform legislation to address our state’s high-school dropout crisis; as a program evaluator for the New Mexico Legislative Finance Committee, the state agency charged with crafting the state budget; and as a policy analyst to Speaker Ben Lujan (D-Nambe).
Since joining the Senate, Jacob has developed a proven track record of passing common sense, bipartisan legislation, aimed at improving the quality of life for all New Mexicans. Some of his legislative accomplishments include sponsoring and enacting:
- The Rural and Low Income Schools Broadband Act which marks the single largest investment in broadband connectivity for public school kids in state history, without raising taxes.
- The Tax Payer Fairness Act which creates a truly independent process for families and businesses to protest their tax bills, ensuring that all tax payers get a fair shake.
- The Carlos Vigil Bullying Prevention Memorial Act that creates a special state board and fund to support bullying prevention work statewide
- The Patient Continuity of Care Act that provides seniors and families with important protections to prevent frequent and dangerous interruptions to their prescription drug coverage.
- Securing over $1.5 million in state capital investment to reduce Westside traffic, better equip public safety officers, and improve Westside schools.
Jacob serves as the Senate Majority Caucus Chairman, making him one of the youngest legislative leaders in the nation. Outside of the Senate, Jacob is currently a Dean’s List student at the University of New Mexico School of Law, and also works as a law clerk with the Garcia Law Group, LLC. Jacob also serves as an Advisory Trustee with TEDxABQ, and as a member of the board of trustees at The Menaul School.
Jacob is proud to make the 26th district his home. He is an aspiring amateur chef, and a spinning, pilates, and hot yoga enthusiast.