MONTE VISTA - At their last meeting Monte Vista City Council conducted interviews for two candidates applying to be the City Attorney. Eugene Farish and Michael Trujillo were both interviewed for the position. The Council interviewed them separately asking each the same 18 questions. Their first question was: “Why do you want to be the City Attorney for Monte Vista?”
Farish, who interviewed first, answered saying, “How much time do I have? I guess I’ve got to back up a little I’ve been the city attorney for Monte Vista for approximately 34 years in the past. And I‘ve seen the city through a lot of situations.” Farish then shared how he first came to Monte Vista and started practice in 1970. “I guess that I’m probably, when I look around, the longest standing business man that’s still here in Monte Vista. Because I’ve been here now 50 years. But why do I want to be the city attorney? Because I think that my experience and my enthusiasm for the city is something that has never waned. I have worked on a lot of projects with the city. Being the city attorney for Monte Vista is a little different for me than being the town attorney for the five towns that I’m currently representing. I live and breathe Monte Vista air 24/7, 365 days a year. I’ve lived in my present residence 48 of those years and a little place over on Adams street for a couple of years before that. I see possibilities for Monte Vista. I think there are a lot of latent things that we can build on. With the right spirit of cooperation,” said Farish. He went on to share how he felt Monte Vista could become a bit of a mecca for entertainment and night life. He shared how he sees the number of stores that are empty and closed. “Filling up those is a real challenge and I think that I have some ideas about things that we could do there to get things moving and be a part of that. I think that there are some things that legally need to be done. And I’ve emphasized this to prior councils, the charter is in need of revision. I try to do the training for the councilors. I’ve produced that training for at least four of you five that are sitting here now. So I’d like to when I’m gone one of these days, I’d like to leave a legacy that we really made this town something together that we can be proud of. I think there are a lot of good things that have happened already,” said Farish sharing how impressed he was with many of the city’s departments and their directors. During his second question Farish shared how his total experience in municipalities spans the scope of approximately 34 years. He was elected district attorney in 1976 while he was also serving as the city attorney to Monte Vista at that time. He also served as county attorney for Saguache county, and school district attorney for a local school district. Currently he still represents Del Norte, Saguache, South Fork, Crestone and Blanca.
When Michael Trujillo’s turn came he was also first asked “Why do you want to be the attorney for Monte Vista?”
Trujillo who is currently serving Monte Vista as an interim attorney answered saying, “Well I have been for the last couple of years on an interim basis and I want to see Monte Vista succeed. I think we’re getting there. I’m pretty dang excited about Monte Vista to tell you the truth and it takes a lot at my age to get me excited. But there are so many things that have gone on to put this town in a good spot that I guess I’m looking to be a part of it. Forrest and this council have put together I think a pretty amazing team to take the city forward.” Trujillo also shared how he felt the department heads like the finance department, police department, city clerk, and others had all done an amazing job to bring Monte Vista to where it is today. Trujillo also shared how he was born and raised in Monte Vista and so was his mother. His father came to Monte Vista after the war and so his roots are very established in Monte Vista. “I’m all in and I’m really proud to be in the position of helping this city go forward. And somewhat humbled because it’s a tough job at times. We got a lot of things to do but we put a lot of pieces of the puzzle in place,” said Trujillo, sharing how excited he was about the Ski-Hi project and how he thought it would put them over the top. “We’ve got a ways to go on that and there are a lot of challenges. Basically I’m here to do my best to help the city if you decide you want to keep me going. I think that it’s just such a nice opportunity to get Monte going in the right direction,” said Trujillo.
Trujillo has been practicing law since 1974 when he was 25 years old. He started in Center after finishing law school and passing the bar his first time. He still serves Center and Monte Vista today. He shared that he represented the town of Saguache in the past for 10 to 15 years. Trujillo also shared that in his time of practicing law he had a case go all the way to the Supreme Court, where the side he represented was successful. Trujillo also shared that he had experience as a judge and was a county judge in Center for almost 16 years.
To see the full interviews you can watch them on the City’s YouTube page at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uoOfT38pibE&t=9704s
The City Council will not make their decision on who they will hire until their Aug. 6 meeting.