Rick Kraft has been active in numerous professional activities.
Rick served as President of the then 6500 member New Mexico State Bar for a one year term in 1998-99. When he was sworn in by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court at age 39, he became the youngest President in the history of the then 112 year old bar organization. He was twice elected by his peers in contested elections to the Board of Bar Commissioners that governs attorneys across the state. He served as a board member from 1991-2002. During his time on the Board he chaired the Pamela Minzer State Bar Leadership Institute, the Annual Convention Committees, the Strategic Planning Committee, the Long Range Planning Retreat, the Task Force on Improving Public Confidence in Lawyers, and the Task Force on Quality of Life.
Before being elected to the BBC, Rick served eight years on the New Mexico Young Lawyers Division Board including directing the organization as its President in 1986-87.
Past honors that Rick has received include the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award in 1990 and the Outstanding Contribution Award from the State Bar in 1986 and 2001. Rick has been a member of the Chaves County Bar for over 37 years, and is a member of the American Bar Association. He is also a member of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Super Lawyers, and was a member of the federal court George Reese Inns of Court before it disbanded.
Rick was licensed to practice law in New Mexico in 1982. He is licensed to practice in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico, the U.S. Court of Appeals, the Tenth Circuit, and the U.S. Supreme Court. He graduated from Baylor University undergraduate in 1980 and Baylor University School of Law in 1982. He is a member of the Chaves County Bar Association, the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and has been designated a Super Lawyer eleven times since 2008.
He has tried jury trials in both Federal and State Courts. He has argued before the New Mexico Supreme Court, the New Mexico Court of Appeals, and State Court Judges across the state. He has had appellate cases published from both the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals.
Rick has also served statewide as a board member of the State Bar of New Mexico, New Mexico Bar Foundation, New Mexico Board of Bar Examiners, the Minimum Continuing Legal Education Board and the State Bar's Leadership Training Institute.
In September 1998, Rick was sworn in by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court as President of the then 6500 member State Bar of New Mexico. He has served on the New Mexico Board of Bar Commissioners (the Governing Board for Attorneys) from 1991-2001 having been elected twice in contested elections by his attorney peers in Chaves, Lea, Eddy, Otero, and Lincoln Counties. As a member of the BBC he has chaired Annual Convention Committees, the Strategic Planning Committee, the Long Range Planning Retreat, the Task Force on Improving Public Confidence in Lawyers, and its Leadership Institute. Before being elected to the BBC, Rick served eight years on the New Mexico Young Lawyers Division Board including directing the organization as its President in 1986-1987.